Editor's note: "A pandemic advent: the arrival of a Savior for all" is a sampling of biblical meditations composed by members of the Concordia University Ann Arbor community. It is our prayer that you will take time during the Advent season to read and reflect upon God's Word and await the coming of Jesus with newfound anticipation and zeal through the Holy Spirit.
December 2 – The light shines in the darkness
Isaiah 8:9–9:7, 1 Peter 4:1–19
As the sounds of the season flow through the air, we are reminded that it is the happiest season of all—or is it? Unfortunately, not all the Christmas songs we hear are full of joy and good cheer. Think about poor Rudolph, a reindeer of small stature taunted and bullied, or Frosty, who laughingly plays with the children, but later melts away. Then there’s Elvis’ Blue Christmas, which sings of loneliness and heartache. I’m sure you can recall others that also miss the mark of joy and good cheer. These songs resonate with people not only because of their catchy tunes but also because the words verbalize their thoughts and emotions.
Like songs, announcements can also convey sadness or even gloom and doom. In our readings from Isaiah and 1 Peter we hear the sad news of people living in the darkness of their worldly passions. In Isaiah 9:2, however, we read, The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness on them has light shone. Albeit an announcement of good news, this passage is also a recognition of the reality of the Darkness.
Isaiah is not talking about darkness as an absence of physical light. This darkness—spiritual darkness—is much worse. Spiritual darkness does not just go away when the sun comes up in the morning. It is a darkness controlled by the Devil, and he has many “catchy” ways to keep us in the dark.
As sinful people, we have all walked in this darkness, and many of us feel like we still do. Yet listen to the song and announcement of GREAT NEWS to dissolve the darkness: For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given (Isaiah 9:6). Moreover, the Gospel of John announces, The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it (1:5).
The Son of God, Jesus Christ, is the Light of the world. He has come to give you hope, life, and peace! He comes to shine His light in the Darkness of sin and the Devil. He has come to bring the truest and holiest Joy to the World!
JOSHUA SCHUMACHER is the Head Football Coach at CUAA and has served at Concordia since 2013
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