Monday, October 22, 2012

Are You Afraid of the Dark?

Lots of people are afraid of the dark. Why is that? Why are we afraid of the dark? Some people think that when we can't see what is around us, we begin to imagine all kinds of scary things that might be out there. Plus, if something really was there, we wouldn't be able to see it.

But there is another kind of darkness which is even more scary than anything we can imagine, and just as real as anything we can see. It's the kind of darkness that the Bible talks about: the spiritual darkness that comes from ignoring or rejecting God.

Are You "In the Dark?"

Many people spend their lives "in the dark" about important spiritual things. They have not read much of God's Word, the Bible, and nobody has ever taught them what it says. Just like it's easy for us to trip over things when we walk in the dark, if someone doesn't know what the Bible teaches, their view of life "is as darkness: they know not at what they stumble." 1

The Darkness of Evil

When the Bible talks about darkness, it is usually telling us about evil. Evil is the opposite of good. Every time we do something that we shouldn't do, the Bible calls it sin. Sin, which is a kind of evil, is called the "unfruitful works of darkness2 in the Bible.

It is important for us to remember that God is not the only spiritual being trying to get our attention and loyalty. Satan, the enemy of God, is the ultimate example of evil and darkness. The Bible warns that our greatest enemies are Satan and "the rulers of the [spiritual] darkness of this world." 3

Eternal Darkness

Any time I get scared of the dark, I think about how much worse it will be for the people "to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever." 4 The Bible says that because of our sin, we all deserve an eternity of darkness apart from God in hell. Some day He will say about many: "Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." 5

Where Can We Find Light?

We all know that turning on a light makes the darkness go away. This is why we need to turn to God, who "is light." 6 Let's find out how from the Bible, which is "a lamp unto my feet, and alight unto my path." 7

The first thing we learn is that God is so perfectly holy that sinners cannot be with Him. 8 Next, it teaches us that we are all sinners. 9 Finally, it shows that none of the good things we try to do can take our sins away. 10 Does this mean that we are all doomed? Yes, but it's not the end of the story. Read on for the good news!

The Bible also tells us about Jesus Christ, God's only Son, who came to earth to show us the way to God, and also to make the way to God by dying as a sacrifice for sin. Jesus taught that we must all "repent … and believe the gospel." 11 To repent is to tell God that you have been doing the wrong things, thinking the wrong things, and going the wrong way in your life. The Gospel is the good news that Jesus Christ died for your sins and rose again from the dead. 12Believing the Gospel means not only accepting it as true, but also trusting Jesus Christ completely as your Saviour.

The message of the Bible is that we can only be saved from hell, rescued from darkness, and given a home in heaven some day 13 because of what Jesus Christ has done. Salvation is a gift purchased by Jesus Christ and given by God to sinners like you and me who see their need of it and receive it by faith. 14

Walking in the Light

Spiritual darkness like evil, Satan, and eternal separation from God are all scary things. But when we are saved and begin to follow Jesus, we don't have to be afraid of them anymore. Jesus said, "I am the Light of the world: he that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life." 15

Bible references: 1 Proverbs 4:19  2 Ephesians 5:11  3 Ephesians 6:12  4 Jude 1:13  5 Matthew 22:13  6 1 John 1:5  7 Psalm 119:105  8 Isaiah 59:2  9 Romans 3:23  10 Isaiah 64:6; Ephesians 2:8,9  11 Mark 1:15  12 1 Corinthians 15:1-4  13 Acts 26:18  14 Romans 5:6-18; 6:23; Ephesians 2:8,9  15 John 8:12


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