Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Light - Genesis 1:2-5

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. Genesis 1:2-5 NIV

וְהָאָ֗רֶץ הָיְתָ֥ה תֹ֨הוּ֙ וָבֹ֔הוּ וְחֹ֖שֶׁךְ עַל־פְּנֵ֣י תְה֑וֹם וְר֣וּחַ אֱלֹהִ֔ים מְרַחֶ֖פֶת עַל־פְּנֵ֥י הַמָּֽיִם׃ וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֱלֹהִ֖ים יְהִ֣י א֑וֹר וַֽיְהִי־אֽוֹר׃ וַיַּ֧רְא אֱלֹהִ֛ים אֶת־הָא֖וֹר כִּי־ט֑וֹב וַיַּבְדֵּ֣ל אֱלֹהִ֔ים בֵּ֥ין הָא֖וֹר וּבֵ֥ין הַחֹֽשֶׁךְ׃ וַיִּקְרָ֨א אֱלֹהִ֤ים ׀ לָאוֹר֙ י֔וֹם וְלַחֹ֖שֶׁךְ קָ֣רָא לָ֑יְלָה וַֽיְהִי־עֶ֥רֶב וַֽיְהִי־בֹ֖קֶר י֥וֹם אֶחָֽד׃ פ

The first thing God created was light. He created the phenomenon of physical light before He created any light source, including the sun and stars. So, on the first day, how could there have been evening and morning? What was the source of that light? There is only one possible solution - God Himself was the first source of light.

Clearly, God is the ultimate source of spiritual light, as 1 John 1:5 says: “God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” And so, significantly, God was the first source of physical light in our universe as well. His light shone into the cold, lifeless chaos, and by His Word, He created order, warmth, and life.

In human experience, darkness is the absence of light. When a light is turned on, the darkness of the room is vanquished, and all that was previously hidden is exposed. Immediately, we can discern the dimensions of the room, its layout, and its contents.

Pornography is born in darkness, in hiding. Porn producers hide their abuse of their actors. Porn actors hide their true identities from the world, as well as their true emotions during filming. Porn users hide their actions and addictions. Porn websites hide their motives, as well as their ways of tracking us. And behind the entire enterprise of pornography lurks the hidden slow destruction of humankind’s ability to enjoy healthy, loving, committed human relationships.

Why are all these things hidden? Because no matter which way we approach pornography, from a user or producer, our inner compass knows that we should be ashamed of these things. However, the more a person ignores and silences their inner compass, the more they become “hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron” (1 Timothy 4:2 NIV). So, there are those whose conscience has been seared and who flaunt their connection to porn. But still, most people know intuitively that porn is shameful, damaging, and immoral behavior, and they instinctively hide it.

In my life, porn has been like a hidden toxin, which others may not know is there, but they certainly feel its effects. It secretly poisons my attitudes, my words, and my heart; and I treat others around me with a coldness they do not deserve and did not earn.

God’s light is able to expose these fatal hidden poisons in my life, if I will allow it. But, shining a light directly onto my own sin and failure is extremely uncomfortable. It lays bare my shame, my lack of self-control, my evil desires, my selfishness, and my indifference. This is a painful process.

Thankfully, light does not only expose hidden things - it also brings life. A physical example is our sun, as NASA says:
“Nothing is more important to us on Earth than the Sun. Without the Sun's heat and light, the Earth would be a lifeless ball of ice-coated rock. The Sun warms our seas, stirs our atmosphere, generates our weather patterns, and gives energy to the growing green plants that provide the food and oxygen for life on Earth.”
Spiritually, this same principle is true. Do I want spiritual warmth and spiritual life? Then I need spiritual light. God is the source of spiritual light. He has shown this light most perfectly in the words and actions of His Son, Jesus.

Do I have the courage to come to God’s light, and ask Him to expose the hidden evils in my life? Do I have the bravery to suffer this shame, for the sake of the new life that His light can bring?
As the source of spiritual light, God can bring light into our darkness, and give us warmth and life in place of our cold and hardened hearts.

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