2 Corinthians 4:6 NIV “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.”
The punch line of the verse seems to be a vein of ore that could be mined forever. “. . . to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.”
the light of the knowledge
the knowledge of the glory
the glory of God in the face of Christ
What does that mean on Monday morning?
I default first to the Mount of Transfiguration and the fact that Jesus asked Father to restore the glory He had before coming to earth. The Revelation 1 portrayal of Jesus certainly has a blaze to it.
Revelation 1:14ff AV His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire; and his feet like unto fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and his voice as the sound of many waters. And he had in his right hand seven stars: and out of his mouth went a sharp twoedged sword: and his countenance was as the sun shineth in his strength. And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead.
The only problem with grabbing this simple application is that it does not work with the rest of the verse.
Clearly this is universal for believers so we can’t just allocate it to Paul and John who had special privileges.
Furthermore, God “made his light shine in our hearts . . . ”
By God making His light shine in our hearts, we can then know (as in experiential knowledge) God’s glory in the face of Christ. That is a current thing, not a future, heavenly snap shot.
OK. Let’s make it official.
I don’t have the slightest comprehension of the actual mechanics of this sequence of divine actions.
However, there are at least three take aways that I can extract from this verse.
First is that this is God’s will. No question. It is His idea. He wants us to experience this sequence. Whatever it is of Him that is in the face of Christ, He wants us to have access to it.
Second, God is doing it unilaterally. There is no hint of our playing a role in this process. Paul uses the picture of creation and there it is absolutely clear that God acted upon darkness in a very one sided manner. Darkness did not ask for light or give a helping hand in the process.
Third, and most spectacular, our crud is no barrier to God doing that. This is not the privilege of the high and holy ones. The darkness that was over the face of the great deep was pretty immense darkness. God didn’t just overrule the darkness and impose light on it. According to Paul, God showed His immensity by bringing the light “out of” the darkness, not just imposing it on the darkness.
I checked the Greek in my Bible study app. It says this word “out of” is “a primary preposition denoting origin (the point whence action or motion proceeds), from, out (of place, time, or cause; literal or figurative).”
So God extracted light from the darkness before Him. Impressive. Stunning. We see darkness. He sees building blocks.
Now bring that home to you and me.
With the exception of the narcissists in our midst and those with advanced degrees in the art of denial, most of the Sapphire tribe is fairly impressed with the unfinished work within us. We see the darkness or brokenness or incompleteness.
It grieves us.
How long does it really take to ever grow up? Are we still dealing with THIS and THAT at this age? Really?
But God doesn’t see us that way.
He looks at the darkness in us and sees building blocks from which He can make His light shine in our hearts.
How wild is that?
It is God sized.
That is what He does. He looks at darkness and sees building blocks.
That is not the world’s way.
ISIS sees all non-believers as enemies. NATO sees ISIS as enemies.
Cops and Blacks see enemies in each other.
NYC cops look at their mayor and see an enemy.
Sony has seen enemies and is now the enemy of many.
The right and the left see the centrists in Congress as enemies.
The list of enemies is endless.
Blessed is the man who can see building blocks in the place of deepest darkness. He is like God in a very important way.
Copyright December 2014 by Arthur Burk
From home, with joy