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Sermon 2/28/10
Isaiah 42:16 - He Is Light

Audio Sermon

He Is Light

"I will lead the blind in a way they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them” (Isaiah 42:16)

One of the amazing attributes of God is the gift of light to a dark and sinful world. Most of us have been given physical eyes to see (though it is not true for all), but for any one of us, without some semblance of light we can't see anything! Isn’t it interesting that He would give us eyes that can see, but a characteristic of those eyes is that in total darkness, they become essentially useless? It takes LIGHT for us to see, to understand.

In Arizona, where I lived for many years, the State Mine Inspector’s Office has inventoried thousands of abandoned mines, but it is estimated that there may be as many as 100,000 such mines there. Over 13,000 of the known mines are dangerous pits or shafts, and it is believed, as suggested in newspaper articles about the problem that the locations of many of the dangerous mines are unknown to State authorities. We live in a dangerous world full of “pits” that we can fall into, and once there, we need help to get out. The social drinking of alcoholic beverages seems innocuous enough, but all too many fall into the pit of alcoholism and lives are ruined. Drugs other than alcohol ruin us and so do certain behaviors that lead to physical and mental wreckage inside our very lives. We see the need to have fun, for companionship, but in darkness of thought we don’t see the sad future that results from our decisions.

Assume for a moment that you are walking along in the Arizona desert, as I often used to do, and suddenly you crash through a thin layer of foliage and drop into an abandoned mine! You hurt in several places though nothing seems to be broken, but you also realize that you can see – nothing! The most terrible darkness is in front of you and it's like a weight on your mind. You literally cannot see your hand in front of your face. There is a heaviness, a blackness in front of you so complete that it makes you afraid to move. You might fall if you did! And that’s why so many in this world “freeze up” and become afraid to move through life – All of us have been born into the “darkness” of not trusting in the Lord and it makes us fearful.

There is a “darkness” in this world that is utterly complete beyond our ability to comprehend it, and yet most don’t know it exists. God, through His prophets, has spoken often to humanity about this unseen need. We glimpse His provision for us in places like Isaiah 42:6-7 – “I the Lord have called you in righteousness, and will hold your hand; I will keep you and give you as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations, to open blind eyes; to bring out prisoners from prison, those who sit in darkness from the prison house.” When Jesus cried out in the Temple, “I am the light of the world, He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life” (John 8:12), the words had great significance to His listeners because they had heard the words of Isaiah all their lives. But the "light" we need is to understand through trusting in the Lord.

Most of us have the ability to taste, smell, see, hear, touch and think, and consider it a great loss if one of those abilities is missing. Something greater than all of them put together is gone from all who are born into humanity and yet a lot of people have refused to believe that the possibility of more even exists. Jesus told us clearly that much more is offered in life than we have previously known. He said, “I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper that He may abide with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you” (John 14:17). He continued… “The Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name; He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you” (John 14:26). And He said, “When He, the Spirit of truth has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come” (John 16:13).

If we are able to look with our eyes, we think we can see, but we are born blind in the most important way of all – We cannot in our natural state see the things of God. We cannot see the future, we don't see His face, but He is here. Just as surely as you could see my face if I was near you, we begin to KNOW the things of God, when we trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. All who place their faith in the Son of God receive the Holy Spirit of God and can KNOW that which was invisible and unintelligible to us before.

Simon Peter, also called Cephas in his life and in Scripture, had great doubts, concerns and he misunderstood a lot, but He trusted in the Lord, and when the Holy Spirit was liberally given to the followers of Jesus on the Day of Pentecost, as seen in Acts Chapter Two, he began to SEE like never before. The disciples of Jesus were so filled with the joy of the Lord that onlookers thought they were drunk (Acts 2:12-13). With his newfound ability to receive and transmit the words that come from God, “three thousand souls” came into the kingdom of God at that moment. Peter said, “Repent and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you SHALL receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38-41).

Do you WANT to see God? Do you want to hear in your heart the words that come from God and be able to bless others by those words? Do you want to know things and understand things that cannot be known by mere intellect? Then trust in Jesus Christ and you will be filled with the Holy Spirit of God. The future is closed to us, but He will even “tell you things to come” as it is said.

We fell into an emotional, physical and spiritual mine shaft a long time ago. Our understanding was darkened and we did not see; strangely we sometimes have not even WANTED to see. But at some point the damage began to be felt in our lives and we need help. We need the Lord Jesus Christ. We need God's Holy Spirit.

There is a blueprint for you that was intended from before the beginning of your life on this earth. God has always had great intentions for Israel, just as He has good intentions for the church, and He has a fine plan for you. But He shakes His head with sadness because we substitute programs in place of vision, placing our own ideas ahead of His. The prophet said, “Hear you deaf; and look, you blind, that you may see. Who is blind but My servant, or deaf as My messenger whom I send?... Seeing many things, but you do not observe, opening the ears, but he does not hear” (Isaiah 42:18-20).

Even those who have trusted in the Lord at some point can suffer from partial blindness and we all need the Lord who is “light continually. Peter later in his life said, “He who lacks (the things of God) is shortsighted, even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins” (2 Peter 1:9). And it’s astonishing and sad that the spiritually blind of this world do not even understand that they ARE blind (Revelation 3:17). They are "blinded by the god of this world,” this “age,” as it is in some translations (2 Corinthians 4:4).

Take another look at our Scripture for today - "I will lead the blind in a way they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them. I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground. These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them” (Isaiah 42:16). You are not alone – He will lead you and guide you. He will turn the darkness of your circumstances into light. He will keep His Word and be with you in your need.

Father, I need the Lord. I confess that I have been blind to You, blind to my need; and I long to see. Please forgive my sins. I trust in Your Son. Fill me with Your Spirit. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Ron Beckham, Pastor
Friday Study Ministries

Write to: Letters@FridayStudy.org

"While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8)

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Friday Study Ministries
P.O. Box 92131
Long Beach, CA 90809-2131 USA