“Shining Ever Brighter”
September 20, 2016
Message Summary: As followers of the one true God we are on the “path of the righteous.” The world is spiritually dark yet as we “keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25b) we are moving forward toward the light. We can be assured, in our hearts, on the veracity of God’s Word that “the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.”
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“The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day” (Proverbs 4:18). “Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in Him and you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining” (1 John 2:8).
We enjoy living out in the country. Around 5:30 this morning I, Brooksyne, stepped out on the deck to let the dogs out and to get an early peek of the new day. We finally got an inch of rain yesterday and I was somewhat hopeful for more evidence of rain in the form of an overnight shower. There was not but I caught a glimpse of the fading moon as the dawn would soon break. The temperature was a comfortable 70 degrees which felt wonderful as I took a deep breath.
I lingered on the deck and began to recite a familiar Scripture verse, “Let the morning bring me word of Your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in You. Show me the way I should go, for to You I lift up my soul” (Psalm 143:8). Just as I was completing the verse I was accompanied by the morning cry of our neighbor’s rooster, “Cock-a-doodle-doo”*. I smiled as the rooster crowed his uplifting “Amen” to the verse I had just quoted. Due to ground fog we did not have a visible sunrise, nevertheless the sun did rise!
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes
We both enjoy sunrises and sunsets. We tend to take more sunset photos since, due to the layout of our property, we don’t see a dramatic sunrise because of the tree line behind our home. However we often post sunset photos we view of the farm field across the street with an old stone farmhouse and silo in the distant background.
About twenty years ago we were on vacation in Acadia National Park in Maine and drove to the top of Cadillac Mountain that offers a stunning panoramic view. Many consider the view of a sunrise on top of Cadillac Mountain to be the point where “the first gleam of dawn” is visible in the United States. It’s a stunning sight drawing many out early for the spectacular view.
Today’s first text is from the Proverbs. I still recall a Bible College definition of a proverb being a “short pithy saying.” Now “pithy” is a not a word I ever recall using apart from this description, but it is in the Microsoft Office dictionary system with synonyms such as “terse, to the point, succinct.”
So let us consider today’s short pithy saying, “The path of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” Isn’t that a descriptive verse? It’s both an observation and a promise from God’s Word.
It’s a universal physical observation. All around this terrestrial ball. the first gleam of dawn is the foretaste of the day’s coming brightness. Although it begins faintly it progressively brightens. When I am near the ocean I enjoy watching the sunrise. The sky gets lighter and lighter even before the sun rises. It can seem like a long wait. Then suddenly it appears on the horizon drawing our eyes to its brightness.
It’s a universal spiritual promise. The Proverb is illustrating the path of the righteous. This path is “like the first gleam of dawn, shining ever brighter till the full light of day.” The Biblical Illustrator commentary notes, “The essentials of a just man’s character have been in all ages the same. The path, the life-course of such a man, is like the shining light.”
There are two other Bible verses that seem to have a similar sense. 2 Peter 1:19 reads, “And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.” 1 John 2:8 states, “Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in Him and you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.”
Consider the expression, “a light at the end of the tunnel.” As we journey through life we can experience times of intense darkness, particularly during a personal trial. The light is distant, small and barely pierces the overwhelming darkness. But as followers of the one true God we are on the “path of the righteous.” The world is spiritually dark yet as we “keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25b) we are moving forward toward the light. We can be assured, in our hearts, on the veracity of God’s Word, that “the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.”
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Father, as we walk in the path of righteousness we also walk in light. The world is full of darkness engulfed by the enemy’s presence but we, by faith, keep our sight fixed on You the invisible One. We persevere and overcome as we look ahead to our eternal reward. There truly is a light at the end of this world’s tunnel when the Son of God takes us by the hand and leads us to the Promised Land. What a grand and glorious day that will be! But until then we keep our eyes on You who shines ever brighter in a sin-sick world that is growing ever darker. In the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
For those desiring further study: Here’s an excellent online commentary collection with notes on today’s text: StudyLight
“Sometimes I Wonder” Video Ernie Haas and Signature Sound
“That’s Why” Video Ernie Haas and Signature Sound
“Ten Thousand Reasons” Video Veritas
* Rooster Crowing Compilation Plus Video Just to bring a smile!
David, a British reader comments concerning yesterday’s message: I read your title: “There’s Too Much To Gain To Lose” too quickly. It reminded me of the words of a farmer some years ago, who used to welcome our youth camp of around 200 youngsters. After we had closed the camp down one year, I went to say good bye and thank you. He was harvesting and from the cab while stopping a few moments… he said: “Can’t stop, we are harvesting”. His words have remained as an incentive over the years. Guess these should be our regular comments… the Kingdom’s priorities are important.
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