by Richard Mansel, managing editor
“Alone in the dark,” is one of the most frightening situations that we can face. We abhor the darkness that gathers around us like a cloak. Harmless objects assume a malevolent face when obscured in darkness. Our vision in the dark is untrustworthy because of these distortions and inherent distrust. Hence, we cannot trust our eyes in the absence of light.
If we find ourselves in the woods at night, we will run with all of our might towards a distant light. Darkness terrifies most of us and we resist it with all that we have.
What is fascinating is that we often do the exact opposite with spiritual darkness. We run away from physical darkness while running to spiritual darkness (Proverbs 1:16; Romans 3:10).
Scripture is very clear that light and darkness are excellent ways to understand sin and righteousness. “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5, NKJV). Jesus calls himself the “light of the world” (John 8:12) that is constantly misunderstood by those in the darkness (John 1:4-5; 1 Thessalonians 5:5).
Yet, most still embrace the darkness, the abode of Satan, where God has no place.
The righteous walk in the brightness of a sunny day while, “The way of the wicked is like darkness; They do not know what makes them stumble” (Proverbs 4:18-19).
The light entered the world but mankind “loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil” (John 3:19). The words “were” and “evil” denote continual action./1 He continues, “For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed” (John 3:20). The word “evil” in 3:19 is a different word than the one in 3:20. The latter word refers to “worthlessness.”/2
The behavior of those in darkness has no redeeming qualities, in the eyes of God. They cannot see the good around them because of the darkness in their eyes. A roach doesn’t know the benefits of cleanliness because it is unnatural to them. Likewise, a person immersed in darkness has so much goodness in the world that they cannot see.
Spiritual darkness obscures hope, peace, unity, faith, love and truth. We become blind to all that is great without the light of the Lord. Evil becomes our default position, leaving the world immeasurably bleak and hopeless.
We must let the Lord’s light bathe our lives in grace and mercy and open our hearts to endless possibilities for joy or we will never see the beauty of God!
1/ Marvin Vincent, Vincent’s Word Studies in the New Testament (Peabody: Hendrikson Publishers, n.d.), 2:101