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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

Reflecting the Brightness of Christ in our Dark World


 

Today’s Reading: Isaiah 60:1-9 (1)


“Arise [from spiritual depression to a new life], shine [be radiant with the glory and brilliance of the Lord]; for your light has come. And the glory and brilliance of the Lord has risen upon you.”

(Iv1 AMPV)

 

This prophecy translates that God will come to live with his people, the remnant. He will transform Zion’s destiny from darkness as black as the thickness of the night caused by sin, which is the wrath of God and judgement (vv. 1-3). The transformation will be so rapid and drastic that all nations will notice it and would be drawn to the Lord by the sudden transformation (light) of his people. All that Jerusalem lost through warfare would be restored by the wealth of many nations because foreign nations will be excited to contribute to their restoration. In the passage, after having announced God’s decision to show mercy to the penitent (59:17a, 20-21), Prophet Isaiah commanded the people to reflect the light of their salvation from God to the darkness of the world around them. The first command is to reflect clearly the light of God’s glory. The Lord is the everlasting light of His people Israel (v.19). The glory of God announces a new manifestation of the redeemed of God. In this context, the Lord himself is viewed at the Light (vv. 19-20; John. 1:3-5). Darkness stands for a very serious gloom, oppression, wickedness and sin (8:22; 9:2; 59:9). Jerusalem would be so enriched by the nations that plunder her that the world would see it. Some interpreted this to refer to be a partial fulfilment of this prophecy, which could be the contribution of King Darius to Zerubbabel’s rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem (Ezra 6:8-9). And others refer it to a condition during the future phase of the Messianic kingdom. Yet others apply it to the period of influx of Gentiles into the church (Isa. 2:2-4; Rev. 21:26 [the New Jerusalem], Hag. 2:7; Zec. 14:14).


Today also, the light of our salvation will so shine that it would draw unbelievers to our God. Three things should be noted in the passage: i) the announcement of the people returning to God in repentance (v.4); ii) the announcement that foreign kings would go out of their way to meet the needs of God’s people (vv. 5-9). The relationship of the foreign kings are described as relationship of nursing mother and child (v.16); and then, iii) the kings bowing down before Zion, the city of God (vv. 14-15).


In the same manner, our world today is full of wickedness, oppression, persecution and glaring sin. Recently the media reported the story of a lover who killed in a gruesome manner, his university girl friend for money ritual, and buried her remains. The young lady was to have returned to the campus two days before. She ignored the mother’s plea for her to wait, but on receiving the lover’s phone call, she left the house and was never to return there again. The lover later pleaded that he needed money to take care of his poor parents. This is the height of wickedness on an innocent lady who trusted him. The world around us is full of all sort of open evil activities, kidnapping of the innocent for money rituals and for ransom, envy, jealousy, covetousness and sins. There is no fear again for the Lord and people take for granted the commands of God. They manipulate the laws of God to suit their purposes. Our God is no respecter of persons, when the cup of our iniquity is full he will surely punish. The unfortunate thing there is that when sinners are being punished, the righteous are affected.


As believers and like the ancient Israelites, we need to return to God in repentance and also to intercede for others still in rebellion against God, because we cannot help ourselves. The scripture also says that if my people that are called by my name (Christians), would humble themselves in repentance and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land (2 Chronicles. 7:14). This is the very reason we need revival in our nation and the nations of the world. We need to go back to the path Nehemiah tred and seek God’s face in repentance, for revival and restoration our nations. Then God will forgive, make his light to shine on us by restoring his goodness and glory on us so that this light will draw others still in darkness to the light of God.


We should be filled with the love of Jesus towards all we come across, for while we were yet sinners, God demonstrated his love for mankind through Him. He translated us from darkness into the light of his Son Jesus Chris by his death on the cross. He declared us not guilty by the remission of our sins through His blood. God made us to seat in Christ Jesus at his right hand side. And made us co-heirs with His Son in his kingdom (Rom.5:8).

God will then raise helpers on our behalf, stir the hearts of people to help restore us because the heart of the king is in the hands of God. He will use those who oppressed us and hated us before. And God’s sudden turn around of peace, wealth and comfort in our lives will draw others to serve and worship God.

To experience this kind of turn around, we need to give our lives to Jesus Christ if we have not done so. And if we have backslide, we need to return to God and he will save us. We need genuine repentance and then the baptism of the Holy Spirit. We also need to be carrier of the fire and power of the Holy Ghost, be prayer addict, daily feed our souls with the word of God, and always be thankful and appreciative of the grace and mercy of God in our lives.


Then our re-built, re-populated, renewed and re-stocked life will be able to retain the power and fire of God and fight the battle of faith and sin by the power of the Holy Spirit. The kingdom of God where we are sited with Christ is not a matter of talk or words; but of power in the Holy Spirit (1Corin. 4:20).

Olufunmilayo Titilola Adekusibe


Prayer:

1. Father, thank you for drawing me to the light of your Son Jesus Christ and letting me be carrier of your light, the reflection of which will draw others to you, in Jesus name.

2. Father, forgive my sins of ignorance and lack of knowledge of things of you; create in me a pure heart Lord; renew a right spirit in me and do not cast me away from your presence, in the name of Jesus.

3. Father, let the flame of fire of your revival fall upon me, my family and environment in Jesus name.

4. Father, revive your church as of the day of Pentecost and let your will be done in your church, in Jesus name.

5. Father, thank you for up-holding our nation with your mighty hand of power, pull down the stronghold of wickedness and revive your work, in Jesus name.


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