Sunday, 19 July 2015
For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6
Following Paul’s order of thought, we can see how he is weaving together his words in order to best reveal what God has done in the giving of the gospel. In the previous verse, he seemed to stop his train of thought and redirect his readers to the understanding that everything he is conveying is not about himself, but about Jesus Christ.
And the verse just before that, he wrote –
“…whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.” (verse 4)
He now pens verse 6 which is given to contrast what was seen in verse 4. The “god of this age” is now contrasted with ” the God” (meaning the true God). Those who have rejected Christ have their minds blinded. However, the true God who “commanded light to shine out of darkness” has once again revealed light. The creation account in Genesis 1 is being equated with the “new creation” in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). What occurs when the veil is lifted is as marvelous as the original light shining out of darkness!
And the intent for this is that God “has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” There is a definite point in time – in the life of Paul, in the life of each of the apostles, and in the life of every person who comes to Christ, at the time of their conversion, when the light of what God has done through the work of Jesus shines upon our hearts.
At that wondrous moment, the veil is lifted and Christ is revealed. However, there is another contrast in these words. The glory of the law was a reflection from Moses’ face to the people of Israel. However, the glory of Jesus is not a reflection, but the transmission of God’s glory. This is seen, for example, in Hebrews 1 –
“God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, 2 has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; 3 who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power…” Hebrews 1:1-3
In Paul’s words here, we find the second and final use of the word phótismos, or light, in Scripture. He used it in verse 4 (cited above) and now he uses it again to show that in seeing Christ, we are seeing the full illumination and splendor of God who is the Source of all light. In other words, Jesus is the one who reveals our heavenly Father. As he said in John 14 –
“He who has seen Me has seen the Father.” John 14:9
The light came into the world at the spoken word of God and Jesus is that spoken Word. In Him the fullness of the Godhead dwells bodily and in Him we have our eternal light and life.
Life application: If you feel beaten up by the world, refresh yourself in the word. Pick up your Bible and remind yourself that God has it all under control. He has given us Jesus and Jesus is fully sufficient to carry you through this world of darkness and into God’s marvelous light.
Heavenly Father, thank You for the light of Christ in my life! I have every assurance that no matter how bad things get, I have an eternal hope because of what You have done through Your Son. There is light, there is joy, and there is peace in opening Your word and finding there wonderful passages which show me Your love for us in the giving of Christ to bring us back to You. I love You and will stand content in You until the day You come for me! Amen.