Summary: Epiphany 3(A) - Isaiah declares: "There will be no more gloom!" The Light has dawned. God's people rejoice.

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January 24, 2010 -

Epiphany 3 -

ISAIAH 9:1-4

INTRO: The past week has been unusually cloudy and foggy. It has been almost gloomy. In the midst of any gloom the light chased away the darkness. During the season of Epiphany we are reminded how the Light of the world came to drive out all darkness. "He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him"(DANIEL 2:22). Christ is Light!


I. The Light has dawned.

II. God’s people rejoice.


A. Verse 1a. God’s promise was bold and filled with hope for God’s people.

1. Verse 1b. Zebulun and Naphtali were two tribes at the north end of the land of Israel.

2. Conquering armies made these two lands doormats as they invaded the Promised Land.

3. Very often these people lived in fear, dread, and gloom of what army would come next.

B. Verse 1c. Jesus’ ministry would take place in this area. There would peace – honor for these tribes.

C. Verse 2. God’s Son, the Light of the world, lived among these people once doomed in gloom.

D. Darkness and light are complete opposites. They have nothing at all in common with each other. Where there is darkness there is an absence of light. When there is light darkness is gone. By birth our natural condition is wicked = darkness. Miracle of miracles, God in his grace and mercy changes our lost and sinful condition. "The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day. But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble" (PROVERBS 4:18,19). There is still darkness today because mankind fails to recognize it. Sadly, many still stumble in the darkness called sin.

E. Why are we not in the dark? It is only be God’s grace that anyone would ever be in the light. It is only by God’s grace that you and I or anyone believes. "For 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" (2 CORINTHIANS 4:6). The Lord God Almighty who created the heavens and the earth has also created faith in our hearts. In our hearts the Light has dawned. In our lives the Light shines forth. There is no more gloom.

F. By nature our sinful heart would love to live in the dark. By grace the Lord reveals to each of us his light. By grace the Lord brings us out of the darkness into the light. Living in God’s light we strive to continue to walk and grow in the Light of the Lord. "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life’"(JOHN 8:12). The Light has dawned in our hearts that it may shine in our lives in this dark world. There is no more gloom.


The Light has dawned. By grace we are saved.


A. For Zebulun and Naphtali God’s light would dawn. Jesus would shatter the darkness. They re-joice.

1. Verse 3a. During Jesus’ life there would be peace. The gospel would be freely preached.

2. The nation of believers would increase. Gentiles would come into God’s kingdom. Re-joice.

B. Verse 3b. There would be great joy. The harvest is done, great joy. A battle is won, great joy.

C. Verse 4. Gideon defeated the Midianites with only 300 men [(not 22,000 that he first had) see Judges 7].

D. God’s kingdom is not a kingdom of this world. The victory that our eternal King provides for us far surpasses our limited earthly thinking. All too often, all too many look to the Lord to provide a nice, easy life here on earth. God can do that. At times God does do that. But more importantly are all the spiritual blessings the Lord wants each to have. "For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit" (ROMANS 14:17). Rejoice in God’s peace and joy.

E. How do we access God’s great blessings? We might not always appreciate God’s “righteousness, peace and joy”. Why not? God, through his Son the Light that has dawned, freely provides each of us and every believer with forgiveness. God’s forgiveness provides peace that the world cannot give. God’s forgiveness is the source of eternal joy. The doom and gloom of wickedness that surrounds us in this world would try to rob us of the joy found in the light of Christ. "And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts"(2 PETER 1:19). God’s word brings joy.

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