When we read of “people walking in darkness” or a “land of darkness” it’s not hard to relate. That’s our reality. We feel the burden of the world’s evil daily—injustice, political upheaval, heinous crimes, greed, spite, dishonesty, exploitation, outrage, slander. And that’s all just in the morning’s headlines and a scroll through social media. It feels dark in our land. And in darkness we feel lost, like there is no obvious solution or way out. We struggle to even imagine a light that could drive out this darkness.
But that is what Scripture promises. Or, more accurately, who Scripture promises.
When Isaiah 9:2 says, “a light has dawned on those living in the land of darkness,” it sounds pleasant, like the soft glow of morning. But does it stack up against the overwhelming bleak darkness of this world? Well, consider the following, then answer that question.
This Light will increase the joy and rejoicing of the people (Isaiah 9:3). It will break the yoke and rod of oppression (v.4). It will turn war implements into kindling (v.5). It will establish a government marked by never ending prosperity, righteousness, and justice governed by the Prince of Peace (vv.6–7). That is no metaphor, and it is about as similar to pleasant as the sun is to a candle.
Christ (for, of course, He is the light prophesied about here as Matthew 4:15–16 explains) is no simple spark in the darkness. He drives out the darkness. Jesus is not a candle in a cave, He is the sun burning away the gloom and shadows of evil. That’s why Isaiah said a light has “dawned”—Jesus brought a new day of His perfect, everlasting kingdom.
Yes, it is still dark here, but it’s not pitch black. Jesus did come, that child promised in Isaiah 9. He did establish His kingdom of righteousness and peace. And He will one day return in all His blazing glory to drive out all darkness, forever. In the meantime the light of Jesus shines through His Word and His people by the power of His Spirit. We face evils daily, but we do not face them alone. “The LORD is my light and my salvation—whom should I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life—whom should I dread?” (Psalms 27:1)
Jesus is our light, today, in this dark world. He is our salvation from evil, that which surrounds us and that which lives in us. And that means the darkness will not overcome us. We need not fear. Like Micah, we can boldly say “the LORD will be my light” (Micah 7:8).
This piece was originally published at He Reads Truth, a website of whose purpose is “To help men become who we were made to be, by doing what we were made to do, by the power and provision that God has given us to do it, for the glory of Jesus Christ.” They do this by providing scripture reading plans accompanied by reflections that can be accessed for free online or purchased as print books.