“16 “No one after lighting a lamp covers it with a jar or puts it under a bed, but puts it on a stand, so that those who enter may see the light. 17 For nothing is hidden that will not be made manifest, nor is anything secret that will not be known and come to light. 18 Take care then how you hear, for to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he thinks that he has will be taken away.”” (Luke 8)
Jesus, the smartest man who ever lived, though never at a loss for words when describing the kingdom of God, never comes out and says exactly what it is. Exactly what it will be like. He mixes and matches metaphors to fit the given situation. Some of this may be so that, “‘seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.’” But the larger reason is probably because it is so far beyond anything we’ve ever experienced, nothing he said would even come close to conjuring up the right picture in our heads. Don’t believe me? Ask Ezekiel, Zechariah and John the Revelator. Like describing light to a man born blind, we just do not have the context to know what the kingdom is.
Jesus tells us though we yet lack the understanding of what it is, we can already begin to see what it does. Little by little, like a slowly breaking dawn or a lamp that is turned up by degrees, we see more and more. Hidden things are made manifest, secrets are brought to light. This is not from us. Our wisdom. We did not make the light; the light is given to us.
“2 The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness,
on them has light shone.” (Is 9)
“1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through 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. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” (John 1)
As handy as it is to know what light is and what it does, it’s what we do with the light we’re given that is paramount! Day has come and we must work while it is day. Just like dawn is given to the whole world, God’s light which John tells us is the life in Jesus, is given to the whole world, it’s what we do with it, how the soil of our hearts receives it, which matters. We have a part to play, “8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret. 13 But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible, 14 for anything that becomes visible is light.” (Eph 5)
Who says the Bible is against science? Here’s Paul, over a thousand years before Descartes, telling us how light works. In as much as it depends on us, we must respond, one way or the other. Darkness retreats from the light, hides from the light, hides its deeds from the light. The children of the light will reflect it and more! And not just reflect, we take it in, like lanterns, the flame of God will burn in us and on us! And here in Luke, Jesus promises as we take it in, more and more will be given to us!
This is why we must be the fourth soil! “But,” the soil cries, “did I make myself? Can I plow myself? Can I weed myself? I am but dirt! God made me what I am and I am helpless against Him!” Au contraire mon frere! “12 So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. 13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” (Rom 8) “5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1John 1) The more light we are given, the more we see our sin, the more we are faithful to confess our visible sin, the more light he gives us, the more light he gives us, the more we see our sin… a wheel of purification, rolling us towards paradise, rolling us towards Him! Making us dizzy, yes, but also making us a pure and spotless bride!
But it is not just for ourselves! Lest we forget, “14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” (Matt 5)
We are given light to be light so that all may see the Light! We serve the Light. It is by the Light we view all things… “22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, 23 but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
24 “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other.” (Matt 6) We will view all things through the lens, by the light of the one we serve. The one we love! If it is our selves, our happiness, our comfort, our security, then it will be darkness. If however, the Light has come and set us free from our darkness and healed our eyes and we turn and love Christ then we love the Light. And if by that light and through him we see and love the Father, then, my brothers and sisters, a new and glorious day has dawned!
Shine on you crazy diamonds!