Saturday, August 20, 2016

Spiritual Darkness

Today I listened to a message from Robert Morris of Gateway Church in Texas as he discussed the political climate of the world today. He said something that both described what is going on, yet gave a reminder of the hope that followers of Jesus Christ have in spite of the turmoil, rage, and spiritual darkness surrounding us. He was talking about a dream he once had and that he had referenced the 9th Plague in a discussion he had during the the dream.

The background story, for any who may be unfamiliar, is when Moses was asking to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, where  they had been held as slaves for hundreds of years. At each refusal from Pharaoh, the Lord sent another plague. Yet, Pharaoh stubbornly hardened his heart each time. Read (or listen to) The 10 Plagues of Egypt in Exodus 7- 11.

But the 9th Plague---The Plague of Darkness---is the focus this time.

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand toward heaven, and there will be darkness over the land of Egypt, a darkness that can be felt.”  So Moses stretched out his hand toward heaven, and there was thick darkness throughout the land of Egypt for three days.  One person could not see another, and for three days they did not move from where they were. Yet all the Israelites had light where they lived. ~ Exodus 10:21-23

Can you imagine a darkness so thick it can be felt? So dark that you cannot see anyone around you, and you are paralyzed with fear? In referencing that passage, Pastor Robert said, "God is saying it is going to get darker and darker in our world, but we will have Light in our dwelling." For those who follow Christ, we will not be consumed by the darkness that is creeping across our world at a faster and faster pace. Ephesians 5:12 tells us, "But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for everything that is illuminated becomes a light itself."

Jesus said in John 3:19-21 , “This, then, is the judgment: The light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil. For everyone who practices wicked things hates the light and avoids it, so that his deeds may not be exposed. But anyone who lives by the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be shown to be accomplished by God.”

Of course, people do not measure good and evil by the same standard, and it is evident that the struggle between darkness and light is growing stronger. The gradual slide into acceptance has become a raging battle. If you disagree, you are called vile names or everything about you is based on your belief system. No longer content to mock and ridicule, people now want to destroy anyone that has a different point of view. The Bible foretold this too. Even among fellow believers, we fight over interpretation. I confess, I can get as furious at a believer who does not view some Scriptures as i do...but I still love them. I just pray that their eyes be opened...or mine! (I have been mistaken, repented... and then continue to mature spiritually.)

It is important for us to remember that darkness and evil (even when disguised as something good and loving) will continue. We are, no doubt, in an age of spiritual darkness as we draw closer to the time Christ promised to return for His Bride. Now, more than ever, we need to pray for ourselves, our family and friends, our nation, and our world. But, also remember always that
Jesus said, "I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life." We Have HOPE!

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