And his father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied, saying, “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for he has visited and redeemed his people and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David, as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from of old, that we should be saved from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us; to show the mercy promised to our fathers and to remember his holy covenant, the oath that he swore to our father Abraham, to grant us that we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” And the child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the wilderness until the day of his public appearance to Israel. Luke 1:67-80
Have you ever been in a really dark place? I do not mean in a house in a city with the lights out but a real absence of light. It is hard to find a place like that in today’s world but when I was young you did not have to get far outside of the city to experience real darkness. I mean the kind of darkness that you can put your hand in front of your eyes and not be able to distinguish you hand from the dark. I have also experienced total darkness in both Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico and Longhorn Cavern in Texas. Total darkness can be a bit unsettling especially if you have a fear of darkness of small spaces.
One thing is for certain, in total darkness there is little you can do. Moving around is dangerous. You cannot read nor do most of the things you usually do. You cannot see the person right next to you. You feel totally alone. That is how humanity is with God’s light. Except that the darkness we endure without God is infinitely greater than any darkness we experience here on earth. It is a darkness of the soul. That is how almost the entire world lived before Jesus came. It is how a great deal of the world still lives even after Jesus brought God’s light to the world.
God sent John to prepare the world for God’s light. John’s duty was to let the Jewish people know that their promised Messiah was coming. Zechariah saw this in his new born son. God gave Zechariah the knowledge of what was going to happen in about thirty years. Zechariah most likely did not live long enough to hear Jesus and to watch Him as He did miracles but God would not let Zechariah die without the knowledge that what Israel had been waiting for for centuries was at hand.
Today too many chose to live in the darkness when there is a chance for light all around them. God’s light is a light that cannot be extinguished and it cannot be hidden except that we chose to ignore and deny it.
Have a blessed day,