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God's Light Shines in the Darkness

(2)

Sermon shared by Joel Pankow

January 2012
Summary: Epiphany is a season where we see the divinity and light of Christ shine. It is made to shine in the heart of man. This sermon talks about how the light shines in the heart and what it does there.
Denomination: Lutheran
Audience: Believer adults
Sermon:
January 8, 2012 2 Corinthians 4:6

God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.

God did not create this world to be dark, but that’s the way it started. In this passage Paul takes us back to the origins of creation. He calls it “darkness.” This is what Moses writes in Genesis 1:1-3,

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 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.

It is hard to imagine such a place, where things are not able to seen or grasped or built. But God wasn’t done with His creative work. In this dark and formless world God spoke light into existence. Without a sun and without stars; three days before they were created; with a simple Word, God created light.

Once light was then in the world, God proceeded to put the world in order and shape it into a very organized and useful place. The stars would help us designate seasons and the sun will help us determine days and years. How important the light was! It enables us to see and to work with God’s creation. Creation without the light would not be complete. In some ways you could say that Creation was made and designed to have light in it. So the Light of the world spoke light into our world.

The way in which God created the world and put light within; the same could be said of the human being. God created us to have Light in us as well. Our hands and our mouths, our emotions and are thoughts are meant to be the sun, moon and stars of our being; through which the light of God shines through to the people living in our world. Man was made in the image of God; so that everything that personified God would be reflected in us and come beaming out through us.

God’s Light Shines in the Darkness

I. He shines to expose the darkness

There are many theologians today who like to talk about how precious we are as humans, BECAUSE we are human and because we are given the image of God through which God’s glory can shine. But this kind of talk can lead people astray, because it tends to forget about what the Scriptures say about the Fall into sin, where Adam and Eve LOST the spiritual sense of this existence. In Genesis 5:2-3 Moses seems to contrast the way Adam and Eve were created and what happened to them because of sin.

When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth.

Moses repeats it with two different words, saying that Seth was born in Adam’s likeness and image. Instead of being a source from which God’s attributes of love and mercy and wisdom would flow, Adam and Eve’s children turned into a black hole of sorts. Instead of God’s love and mercy and wisdom shining through them, they turned into self consuming creatures who only want all things to serve themselves; full of darkness; living unregulated and uncontrollably according to their own passions.

In today’s text Paul uses the beginnings of Creation to compare what God does with us. He compares the human heart to the darkness of the unformed
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