Light in the Darkness

By John Thiel, mp3

Scripture reading: Isaiah 9:2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. … 6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

What is meant with these words? The people who were in great darkness saw a great light, which was Jesus. But that still needs to be practically illumined to our minds’ eye. If we want to comprehend light for our blinded, darkened minds, we need to understand the darkness. We must seek Scripture to identify what the darkness is, so that we can then identify more clearly what the light is. It is a little bit like you cannot appreciate the Lord Jesus Christ as your personal Saviour unless you first see yourself as sinful and totally broken; therefore we want to look at what is meant by darkness.

Proverbs 2:11 Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: 12 To deliver thee from the way of the evil [man], from the man that speaketh froward things; 13 Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; 14 Who rejoice to do evil, [and] delight in the frowardness of the wicked; 15 Whose ways [are] crooked, and [they] froward in their paths:

Here is a description of the darkness of this world – a people who speak froward things, who leave the paths of uprightness, who walk in the ways of darkness. They rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked; their ways are crooked. The ways of darkness are the ways and practices of wickedness and sin.

Proverbs 4:19 The way of the wicked [is] as darkness: they know not at what they stumble.

It is the way. It is the lifestyle, the practices, walking along paths that are wicked. That is what darkness is.

Ecclesiastes 2:12 And I turned myself to behold wisdom, and madness, and folly: for what [can] the man [do] that cometh after the king? [even] that which hath been already done. 13 Then I saw that wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness. 14 The wise man’s eyes [are] in his head; but the fool walketh in darkness: and I myself perceived also that one event happeneth to them all.

We see that wisdom and madness and folly are symbolised by light and darkness. “Wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness.” The fool that walks in the error of his foolish ways is in darkness, whereas those who rely upon the wisdom of heaven are in the light.

There is a kind of darkness that is worse than even the doing of error and the paths of sin and evil. What kind of darkness is worse than that kind of darkness? Jesus expressed it in Matthew:

Matthew 6:22 The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. 23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great [is] that darkness!

The things that people see with their eyes, what they perceive, illuminates their inward minds, and if what they are seeing is evil and they think it is light, can you see the darkness of that? “If the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!” If what you think and what you are looking at seems to you as light, as something to understand and appreciate, but it is actually darkness, that is extreme darkness. Jesus emphasised that. He is here speaking to the Pharisees who claimed that they could see, but who were directly in this terrible plight of thinking that they had light, when they were actually in darkness:

John 9:39 And Jesus said, For judgment I am come into this world, that they which see not might see; and that they which see might be made blind. 40 And [some] of the Pharisees which were with him heard these words, and said unto him, Are we blind also? 41 Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.

If they were in darkness, if they were blind and couldn’t see, they would have no sin. But He said, “You claim that you see, you claim that you understand: you are in terrible darkness. Your sin remaineth, you are really in the dark.” How great a darkness is it when people think they have light even though it is actually wrong? Darkness is everything in mind, character and practice that is void of truth and righteousness. If there is some truth and some goodness mingled together inside of a person, there is such a thing as partial light. You know what it is like, in the morning a little bit of light comes, but you still can’t see straight, it is still not perfect. It is just a dimness of vision. You’ve got a little bit of light, but most of it is darkness.

Precious light is to shine forth from the word of God, and let no one presume to dictate what shall or what shall not be brought before the people in the messages of enlightenment that He shall send, and so quench the Spirit of God. … No one can afford to stand back in an attitude of indifference and self-confidence, and say: “I know what is truth. I am satisfied with my position. I have set my stakes, and I will not be moved away from my position, whatever may come. I will not listen to the message of this messenger; for I know that it cannot be truth.” It is from pursuing this very course that the popular churches were left in partial darkness, and that is why the messages of heaven have not reached them. {CSW 28.1}

Partial darkness – They had certain light but they would not listen to any more light. So instead of growing in the illumination, they were in partial darkness. You can have some light and still be in some darkness, and you are not fully illuminated. Let us permit the Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy to illuminate some details of this darkness. We are now seeking to understand the detail of darkness versus light:

Ephesians 2:1 And you [hath he quickened], who were dead in trespasses and sins:

Dead in darkness.

Ephesians 2:2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: 3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.

The people of the world are walking in the darkness of the lusts of their flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, children of wrath suffering in the darkness of the shadows of Satan. When we read this we say, “Yes, I have been relieved from that, this does not affect me anymore, does it?” When you read Galatians chapter 5, the fruits of the flesh, you read them all and you think, I’m not like that, but then all of a sudden variance comes in, and that is also darkness; that is the flesh as well.

We want to understand the elements of darkness that may even affect those who are in the darkness of the evils and corruptions of the world.

The husband and father who is morose, selfish, and overbearing, is not only unhappy himself, but he casts gloom upon all the inmates of his home. He will reap the result in seeing his wife dispirited and sickly, and his children marred with his own unlovely temper. {MH 374.6}

This is darkness: gloom. A morose, selfish, and overbearing character – that is darkness, because it creates gloom. This doesn’t have to be necessarily speaking of a father. A mother can be the same way, when there is a moroseness, a gloom that surrounds the soul. That is darkness. Here is another enlargement of what darkness is, down to the finer detail:

Mercy’s pleading resisted, the impulse of evil bore final sway. Judas, angered at an implied rebuke and made desperate by the disappointment of his ambitious dreams, surrendered his soul to the demon of greed and determined upon the betrayal of his Master. {Ed 92.2}

What was the darkness that got Judas? The impulse of evil, pleadings resisted, disappointment of ambitious dreams – these are elements in darkness. Jesus was working for Judas:

Seeing the danger of Judas, He had brought him close to Himself, within the inner circle of His chosen and trusted disciples. Day after day, when the burden lay heaviest upon His own heart, He had borne the pain of continual contact with that stubborn, suspicious, brooding spirit; He had witnessed and labored to counteract among His disciples that continuous, secret, and subtle antagonism. And all this that no possible saving influence might be lacking to that imperiled soul! … {Ed 92.4}

Did you pick up the darkness here? What is it that He was trying to prevent? The stubborn, suspicious, brooding spirit. Stubbornness, suspiciousness – these are the elements of darkness. And they affected the disciples, and Jesus had to constantly throw light in the path of this to prevent this darkness from overruling the light. Here is darkness in action:

The envious man diffuses poison wherever he goes, alienating friends and stirring up hatred and rebellion against God and man. {CCh 176.1}

Envy – darkness.

He seeks to be thought best and greatest, not by putting forth heroic, self-denying efforts to reach the goal of excellence himself, but by standing where he is and diminishing the merit due to the efforts of others. {CCh 176.1}

The tongue that delights in mischief, the babbling tongue that says, Report, and I will report it, is declared by the apostle James to be set on fire of hell. It scatters firebrands on every side. What cares the vendor of gossip that he defames the innocent? He will not stay his evil work, though he destroy hope and courage in those who are already sinking under their burdens. {CCh 176.2}

Can you see the darkness? Gossiping, defaming the innocent.

He cares only to indulge his scandal-loving propensity. {CCh 176.2}

Scandal-loving – Do we like to hear bad reports about somebody? Some people are on the edge always trying to listen for some exciting scandal. This is darkness!

Even professed Christians close their eyes to all that is pure, honest, noble, and lovely, and treasure up what ever is objectionable and disagreeable, and publish it to the world. {CCh 176.2}

Even Christians do that. Christians can be in the darkness.

It pains me to say that there are unruly tongues among church members. There are false tongues that feed on mischief. There are sly, whispering tongues. There is tattling, impertinent meddling, adroit quizzing. {CCh 176.3}

These are the elements of darkness. “There are false tongues that feed on mischief;” “sly, whispering tongues.” “There is tattling, impertinent meddling, adroit quizzing.

Among the lovers of gossip some are actuated by curiosity, others by jealousy, many by hatred against those through whom God has spoken to reprove them. All these discordant elements are at work. Some conceal their real sentiments, while others are eager to publish all they know, or even suspect, of evil against another. {CCh 176.3}

We have read the elements of darkness beyond the blatant darkness of the evil world around us. This is something that is even in the lives of Christians of the church that Sister White is writing to. I could go on and on ad infinitum to describe what darkness is, but we’ve seen enough, haven’t we? Jesus came as light, and all who dwell in darkness have seen a great light. We can see that we have all been in this darkness, and sometimes I wonder whether we are right out of it. But Christ is there so that we can see a great light. The question is, What will they do that see this great light? They know the darkness, and they see this great light. But the question is what they will do with it. What will they do with Jesus, the great Light that they can see? One class will respond. One class will see this light of Jesus and will respond. Let us see the response that is spoken of in the Bible; the One who illuminates the darkness is here speaking, and He says to these people who are responding to the light:

Proverbs 23:26 My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways.

The light shines in the darkness, and now the people in the darkness are invited. Even the people of the world, they can’t help but see Jesus, and will they respond? He says, Give Me your heart. Observe My ways; observe My light; focus upon it. For those people that will give Him their heart and focus upon the ways of the Lord, what will happen to their darkness?

2 Corinthians 4:6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to [give] the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

Give Him your heart, and what will happen? He who can bring light out of darkness, will shine into our dark hearts. With all its dark activities He will shine in our hearts “to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” Jesus will be illuminating our hearts as we give Him our hearts and consider to behold His ways. Look at Him. Look at the ways of Jesus, and our dark hearts, the darkness in our hearts with all its gloom, guilt and oppressive darkness, will be illuminated.

These people who give God their hearts, are they upright ones?

Psalm 112:4 Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness: [he is] gracious, and full of compassion, and righteous.

Those people who open their hearts, who give Him their hearts, they are the people whom God acknowledges as the upright ones, and light shall arise in the darkness. As we dwell in the darkness, there comes light, and what happens to the darkness? You can’t shut darkness out, darkness is always there, but you can let the light shine in, and it will dispel the darkness.

We want to understand the practicality of this. It is so easy to read these things, often these words are cliché to us. But what is the practical reality of letting the light shine in, of giving Him our hearts, observing His ways. What is meant with this?

Pure and undefiled religion is not a sentiment, but the doing of works of mercy and love. {MYP 142.1}

We often get caught up in sentimentalism in religion. Sister White calls it poetic fancy. It’s so poetic, isn’t it? There are beautiful things stated in the Bible, they are so lovely, but pure and undefiled religion is not just that. It is doing the works of mercy and love, opening our hearts, doing something about the truths that come to us.

This religion is necessary to health and happiness. It enters the polluted soul-temple, and with a scourge drives out the sinful intruders. {MYP 142.1}

When light comes in it scourges out the darkness. That’s what it is. If the religion of Jesus is embraced in its practical terms it enters the polluted soul-temple, the dark heart, and with a scourge drives out sinful intruders.

Taking the throne, it consecrates all by its presence, illuminating the heart with the bright beams of the Sun of Righteousness. {MYP 142.1}

Jesus is the light. Let Him in. Contemplate Him. What does it do?

It opens the windows of the soul heavenward, letting in the sunshine of God’s love. {MYP 142.1}

This is pure and undefiled religion.

With it comes serenity and composure. Physical, mental, and moral strength increase, because the atmosphere of heaven, as a living, active agency, fills the soul. Christ is formed within, the hope of glory.– Review and Herald, October 15, 1901. {MYP 142.1}

This is practical knowledge. We need to engage in practical, pure religion. What are we to do? We are to give Him our heart, we are to observe His ways, and as we act on that, as we do that, in will come the light, and then it will open the windows of the soul heavenward, and in floods more light. Physical, mental, and moral strength will then be for us as we do that.

Let envy and jealousy be banished from the heart, and let the peace of Christ come in to unite, the members of the church in true Christian fellowship. Let the windows of the soul be closed against the poisonous malaria of earth, and let them be opened heavenward to receive the healing rays of the sunshine of Christ’s righteousness. {6T 202.1}

Are you picking up what it means to let the glory of Jesus shine in our hearts? What are we to do? We are to shut the windows earthward. If you look at the darkness around you, if you permit the darkness to affect you, what will happen? Darkness will come in. What then are we to do? Close the windows earthward. Open the windows heavenward. As we receive the rays of the sunshine of Christ’s righteousness, the spirit of criticism and suspicion is banished from the heart. The darkness is banished from the heart. When the windows are lifted upward it will scourge out the spirit of criticism and suspicion. I thank God that He gives us practical things, not just poetic things, looking at the cliché without knowing what they mean. Here is the detail. When we talk about light in the darkness, we are talking about opening the windows of the soul to heaven to contemplate the ways of God, to let His beautiful light of character shine in, and the darkness can’t remain there. But when we don’t open the windows to heaven and we open them to the earth and we look at the things around us, darkness floods in again, suspicion, negativities, doom, gloom, moroseness. This is what happens. But God is calling us, and if we will open the windows to heaven, we will be those people:

1 Peter 2:9 But ye [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

Out of darkness into His marvellous light – This is a meaningful understanding of what we have been reading so far. What is the darkness? We have established it. The point is that when we open our hearts to heaven, opening the windows of the soul heavenward, then the light of the contemplation of those heavenly things will illuminate us, and we will no longer be that which is spoken of in verse 10:

1 Peter 2:10 Which in time past [were] not a people, but [are] now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

What have they done? They have opened their windows heavenward, and they are this peculiar people.

Ephesians 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now [are ye] light in the Lord: walk as children of light: 9 (For the fruit of the Spirit [is] in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

That is what light is about.

Ephesians 5:10 Proving what is acceptable unto the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove [them].

If we do not relate to these statements in the practical way in which we have sought to do in this study, we will keep on playing around with the darkness. But we are to have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness. What is fellowship? We are to reprove them, not have fellowship with them, because we were sometimes in darkness. And if we start fellowshipping with them again, what will that do to us? Have you ever related with someone, or with some people whom you had been in darkness with, and you come back to them and have more dialogue with them? What does it do to your soul? Doesn’t it fill you with darkness? Doesn’t it fill you with negative thoughts and feelings? That is darkness. We are called upon to open the windows to heaven, not to the darkness around us. That is what is meant by these words, “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light. … And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them.”

As we realise that this is what light versus darkness is all about, we follow the instruction willingly, knowing that this is the only way by which we will see the light of Jesus Christ and be benefitted by it. This class of people will be benefitted by the light when they see it shining upon them in the darkness. Here is the instruction for those who are upright, who open their hearts’ windows to heaven:

Proverbs 4:10 Hear, O my son, and receive my sayings; and the years of thy life shall be many. 11 I have taught thee in the way of wisdom; I have led thee in right paths. 12 When thou goest, thy steps shall not be straitened; and when thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble.

Have you ever had trouble walking? It was difficult, it was narrow and you couldn’t quite walk straight. “Thy steps shall not be straitened; and when thou runnest, thou shalt not stumble.”

Proverbs 4:13 Take fast hold of instruction; let [her] not go: keep her; for she [is] thy life. 14 Enter not into the path of the wicked, and go not in the way of evil [men].

Have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness.

Proverbs 4:15 Avoid it, pass not by it, turn from it, and pass away.

There is this hymn that says, I’m a pilgrim, and I’m a stranger, I must leave you, and be gone.

Proverbs 4:18 But the path of the just [is] as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.

We have come out of darkness, and as we let the light shine in, it gets brighter and brighter, as we keep on opening wider and wider.

Proverbs 4:19 The way of the wicked [is] as darkness: they know not at what they stumble.

The people who will let the light shine in, what will they become? Like Jesus, they will become the light of the world. That is what Jesus says, “Ye are the light of the world.” It can only be light if the light is in there. If there is darkness inside, we will dispel gloom and moroseness. While the light of Jesus produces such things in those who open their hearts to it, how does the class of people who are in darkness respond to that light that they see? I find it very interesting that even the wicked people out there quote Scripture. The most wicked people quote scriptures. They see the light. They know what is in the Bible. What is the problem then? Why can they quote Scripture and still be in darkness? Here is the reason:

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

Every man is lit with this.

John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

This is another class of people. The light shines, but they comprehend it not. Why? Why can light shine upon them and they not comprehend it? Why? Jesus gives us the answer:

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already,

Why?

John 3:18 …because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20 For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.

Here is the answer why the light comes and shines in the darkness, and the darkness comprehend it not. Here is the problem. People who are of the class that finds the light of Jesus shining upon them, love the darkness rather than the light. Therefore the darkness comprehended it not.

…but the world, unaccustomed to gaze upon truth, turned from the light to the darkness of error; for error was more to their perverted taste than truth (RH Aug. 6, 1895). {4BC 1153.5}

These are heavy, serious things to understand. If people do not comprehend the light, what is the reason? It was not according to their accustomed way. They didn’t like it. They turned from the light to the darkness of error, for error was more to their perverted taste than truth. This is where all of us can examine ourselves. Do we enjoy being corrected by the servants of God, by the word of God? Is it uncomfortable, and I’d rather not have that? It’s when the light shines in that there is a problem which causes the darkness not to comprehend the light. It is not pleasant. They love the darkness rather than the light. Oh yes, people don’t like the consequences of darkness, but they love the darkness, they love the sins. They love to indulge their passions; they love to indulge their tattle-telling, they are listening to reports, and they will report on. It’s part of the excitement. To these the light is not welcome.

They do not appreciate their opportunities. They close the windows of the soul that should be opened heavenward, and open their windows wide earthward. But when they see the excellence of the human soul they will close the windows earthward, which depend on worldly amusements and associations in folly and sin, and will open the windows heavenward to behold spiritual things. The word of God must be their assurance, their hope, their peace. Then they can say: “I will receive the light of the Sun of Righteousness, that it may shine forth to others.” {6T 114.3}

Let envy and jealousy be banished from the heart, and let the peace of Christ come in to unite, the members of the church in true Christian fellowship. Let the windows of the soul be closed against the poisonous malaria of earth, and let them be opened heavenward to receive the healing rays of the sunshine of Christ’s righteousness. {6T 202.1}

We are to close the windows of the soul. But you know what it’s like, something is going on outside, and we go to the window and say, That’s interesting, come and have a look. The things that are happening in the earth are exciting, but it’s darkness! Gross darkness. And we are to close the windows and focus our attention on the light from heaven, for the light to shine in and free us from the darkness. But the wicked don’t want that. That is why God says, Okay, leave them alone. Ephraim is joined to his idols, leave him alone. When people want to stay in the darkness, and they don’t want the light, no matter how much they may sometimes be fascinated with some aspects of the light, but their attitude is really, No thank you; then leave them alone. The following scripture describes their case. God makes here an interesting point. Satan comes with lying wonders,

2 Thessalonians 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

Remember the story of Ahab. What did Satan come up to God with? “I will get him to do what you want him to do, I’ll get him to be killed.” With all deceivableness of unrighteousness he begins to work in them that perish, Ahab, “because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.” Ahab loved his Baal worship. People today love their Baal worship, their sun-god, their sports, their excitements of the world, their amusements. They love all that, and therefore Satan will come along and lead them into destruction by that. And that is what you see. People go to the soccer games, and they trample upon each other. That has happened not so very long ago. It goes on and on.

2 Thessalonians 2:11 And for this cause [because they loved not the truth] God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

The light is shining upon the people in darkness, but it’s what they do with the light that either saves them, or condemns them. In spite of all this darkness that people choose, we who will welcome the light are to take courage, because if we will let the light shine in and get brighter and brighter, the words of Isaiah sixty are the comfort for us. The light will grow brighter and brighter, and we love the light, we shut the windows of the soul earthward and lift them up heavenward so that the rays of the Sun of righteousness may come in:

Isaiah 60:1 Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee. 2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people:

Remember what the darkness is: they think they are right, when they are all wrong.

Isaiah 60:2 …but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.

What is written in reference to that glory, that beautiful light that is to shine through God’s people who have shut the darkness out by opening their hearts to the light?

Habakkuk 2:13 Behold, [is it] not of the LORD of hosts that the people shall labour in the very fire, and the people shall weary themselves for very vanity?

The people of God will have to work and labour in the very fire.

Habakkuk 2:14 For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea. 

In this gross darkness that surrounds God’s people, they shall stand up and shine, and the glory of the Lord shall cover the earth like the waters cover the sea. This is God’s foresight, and if you read Revelation 18:1 you see that it is the angel whose glory shall fill the whole earth. As that angel shines, God’s people will display the light – because, like Jesus, God’s people are that angel, and they are to light the world.

It is to the thirsting soul that the fountain of living waters is open. God declares: “I will pour water upon him that is thirsty, and floods upon the dry ground.” To souls that are earnestly seeking for light and that accept with gladness every ray of divine illumination from His holy word, to such alone light will be given. It is through these souls that God will reveal that light and power which will lighten the whole earth with His glory. {5T 729.2}

Through which souls? Those who have opened the windows of their hearts to the heavenly light. As they thirst and hunger for the light, as they open their hearts to that, and as with gladness they receive every ray of divine illumination from His holy word. It is these who will lighten the whole world with God’s glory. It is these.

Therefore what would you expect? If you are such a person, if we are such a company, what do you expect from the darkness around you? We need to take courage in the message of this hour. Like Jesus came unto His own and His own received Him not, like the world were walking in darkness, and were given the light, and saw it, but did not comprehend it; is it going to be any different at the end?

Of the vast population of the earth before the Flood, only eight souls believed and obeyed God’s word through Noah. … So it will be now. Before the Lawgiver shall come to punish the disobedient, transgressors are warned to repent, and return to their allegiance; but with the majority these warnings will be in vain. Says the apostle Peter, “There shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, and saying, Where is the promise of His coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning.” 2 Peter 3:3, 4. … Jesus asked the significant question, “When the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8. Paul warns us that we may look for wickedness to increase as the end draws near: “The Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils.” 1 Timothy 4:1. The apostle says that “in the last days perilous times shall come.” 2 Timothy 3:1. {PP 102.2}

If we will be the children of light, if we will be that company that sees the light in the darkness and opens its hearts to it, then we will be a light to the world, and we must not expect that the world will accept it. This is the most puzzling experience to a person who has found the light, and has found it so wonderful, Why do they not see it? So there are many Christians that go out today bombarding the people with the darkness, the darkness, the darkness that is around them, telling them, Look, look! Here is the light! Come here! and the people don’t want to know, and those Christians create persecution upon themselves.

It is so essential that we get it very clear in our minds that we are to shine, but we are not to ram our shining down the dark alley that doesn’t want the light. Courage, brethren, the time in which we are living is the time of Jesus as our High Priest next to the throne of God, and although people don’t want to know any of this, we who know it and who open our hearts to it, are to keep on opening our hearts.

What is Christ doing in heaven? He is interceding for us. By His work the threshold of heaven is flushed with the glory of God which will shine upon every soul who will open the windows of the soul heavenward. As the prayers of the sincere and contrite ones ascend to heaven Christ says to the Father, “I will take their sins. Let them stand before you innocent.” As He takes their sins from them, He fills their hearts with the glorious light of truth and love (MS 28, 1901). {7BC 930.16}

This is our time, and while the rest of the world doesn’t want it, don’t you? We see the light and we say, Oh that is beautiful, I gladly receive every ray. Or, do I? We are clearly illuminated here today with the light that shines from heaven, so that we can see the darkness versus the light so vividly. The Spirit of Prophecy is precious, it is the testimony of Jesus, the light of the world, and I am baffled how people today are laying it aside. It is too troubling to the darkness that wants to dwell within.

Let us determine to make our calling and election sure. Let the light take root. Let it illuminate every crevasse of our heart, so that the dark heart is illuminated with the glory of the face of Jesus imprinted upon it. May this be our determined choice to shut out the darkness by letting the light shine in.

Amen.

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Posted on February 2, 2017, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons by John Thiel and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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