Faithlife Sermons

Light in the Darkness

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Intro

Intro
Flashlight Object Lesson
Would you know good if everything were good?
Would you know evil if everything were evil?
Why the tree in the garden?
The separation of the light from the darkness is a necesary part of humanity.
Knowing in Genesis means intimacy.
Adam and Eve knew good, because they knew God. But they couldn’t see God’s goodness, because everything they knew was good.
They didn’t know it was good until after they came to know (be intimate with) evil when they ate from the tree.

(8) Light an Darkness Theme

The original creation was only darkness. God created the light because it was good and separated the light from the darkness.
God calls light day and darkness night.
The sun, moon, and stars were created to demonstrate the difference between the light and the dark.
Ancient people believed the sun, moon, and stars were divine beings.
cf. Jesus as bright morning star—the star that appears during the day—other lights as astral deities that rule the nations—sons of God, gods of nations, etc. that appear at night.
FULL BIBLICAL THEME: Not just light and dark: God creates light out of darkness. He differentiates the dark from the light to bring attention to the goodness of the light.
Where did the darkness come from in the first place?
Our idealized picture of creation
In it appears God created it as part of the 1st creation. The first matter God created was dark.
God created the darkness; not just literally, but even the disaster or calamity that is the night.
Emphasizes that God created both night and day.
Why did God create the darkness?
God created the darkness so that Jesus would have a place to shine.
A light that shines in the light is nothing, but a light shining in the darkness brings sight. “This came about so that God’s works might be displayed in him” (3).
TRANSITION: (b) Live as children of the light because Jesus is the light.

(9-10) Live as Children of the Light

() Some later Bible texts say ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ not ‘Fruit of the light’ see KJV
Scribal elaboration. The early Christians understood that it is the Spirit of God that allows us to live in goodness, righteousness, and truth and so they changed the word in the text to reflect that.
Children of Light pursue this fruit: Goodness, righteousness, truth.
(, ) Children of the light test what is pleasing to God.
ESV, try to discern — which is more like learning
To test is to learn by doing—kinesthetic.
Practice the light—too many Christians thing our faith is about NOT doing bad things.
Children of light are active in goodness.
ILL: Positive classroom rules (NOT “Don’t leave trash in the classroom.”, but “I will keep my workspace clean.”)
Why don’t Christians seek out good things to do?
They think that they are not ready to carry out God’s purposes yet.
They think they have to get rid of evil temptations before they are worthy of doing good.
They are too busy or lazy to actually do anything.
ILL: At least Peter tried to walk on the water — note: when he stumbled Jesus caught him. — What did the other disciples think about this?
ILL: Need a personal story here
cf.

(11-13a) Expose the Works of Darkness

ILL: Working on a car with a flashlight. (Light exposes what is hidden)
() Whose works of darkness are to be exposed?
Many people take this as a command to expose other people’s works of darkness, equating the preaching of the Gospel with condemning them because of their sin. (…it is shameful even to speak of the things that are done by him in secret…)
Implication, How much more to do them!?
The command, in context, has to do with your personal sin
v. 8, you were once in darkness
v. 8, you are now light
v. 10, you are commanded to test what is good
v. 14, you are commanded to ‘Get up’
It is your sins—your darkness—that you are called to expose with the light of Jesus.
Every area of life, every dark corner, comes under the scrutiny of the light of Jesus.
() NOTE: It is shameful even to talk about what is done in secret in the dark.
1 Thessalonians 5:5 CSB
For you are all children of light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or the darkness.

() EXH: Get Up, Sleeper

Early Christian Hymn (probably)
Genesis 1:1–5 CSB
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness covered the surface of the watery depths, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the surface of the waters. Then God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” There was an evening, and there was a morning: one day.
Sleep = Dead
It is by Christ’s power that we rise—that we are brought from death to life
But, the Gospel of Jesus beckons you to get up, to rise from the dead, and to live in the light of Christ.
ILL: Lazarus ()
Jesus beckons you to rise from the dead.
Jesus beckons you to come to come out of the grave and into the light.

() Jesus is the Light of the World

Psalm 74:16 CSB
The day is yours, also the night; you established the moon and the sun.
cf.
Isaiah 45:7 CSB
I form light and create darkness, I make success and create disaster; I am the Lord, who does all these things.
Follow Jesus
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