Light In The Darkness
A daily devotion for March 22nd
7Therefore do not be partners with them.
8For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light 9(for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) 10and find out what pleases the Lord. 11Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. 12For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. 13But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14for it is light that makes everything visible. This is why it is said:
"Wake up, O sleeper,
rise from the dead,
and Christ will shine on you."
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them (Ephesians 5:11).
Sexual looseness is incompatible with the Christian faith, because the Christian is directed to expose the true character of sexual evil. You cannot expose something and indulge in it at the same time. It is utterly inconsistent. The church of Jesus Christ is directed by the Holy Spirit to be a source of correct information on matters of sex. Paul says the church is
the pillar and foundation of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15). I do not hesitate to say today that it is only the church that can teach the world the true nature of sex. Even the serious worldling, intent in utter sincerity on trying to alleviate the problems of society, does not see clearly. Therefore, we cannot accept statements from the world in these matters without checking them against the truth of Scripture.
But the job of Christians is to speak up in these areas. They should challenge these false ideas. They are to tear away the mask from these wrong concepts and reveal the truth. If we needed any justification at all for a message like this, here it is: The apostle says,
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them to the light, make them visible. He does not mean to denounce them. The world is utterly unimpressed by people who go around denouncing. What the church ought to do is to show the truth helpfully about these things, tear away the lies, and let the world see that what God has intended for sex is wholesome, beautiful, wonderful, and properly protected by the bonds of marriage.
Young people are always looking for a cause to espouse. In common with much of our society, they want to rebel against something. May I suggest something? Rebel against the rebellion! Tear away the veils from these delusions that grip people today, making them hope that they will find something beautiful and healthy and wonderful in the exploitation of sex. They will not find it at all. Help them to see that. Tear away these veils.
But wake yourself up first. Alert your minds and hearts. Realize that in the Word of God you have the truth as it really is. Christ will give you light. Then tell somebody about it. Blazon it abroad. Capitalize on the universal interest in this subject today—it is perfectly proper. Help people to see that this is part of God's great yearning heart of redemptive love that is ever seeking to draw people away from that which destroys and ruins and creates unhappiness and misery, back into wholeness and fullness and joyfulness and the living of life as God intended people to live. Expose these things.
...Everything exposed by the light becomes visible (v. 13). Anything that tears away the masquerade and exposes the facts is light.
Father, may I walk as this verse suggests I walk, shining as light in a dark place. Thank you for the privilege of it in this day of darkness.
Life Application: Darkness is the absence of light like apathy is the absence of action. How do we act to expose the truth of the Light in the Word? When and in Whom do we speak up?
Copyright © 2007 by Elaine Stedman — This daily devotion is from the book The Power of His Presence: a year of devotions from the writings of Ray Stedman; compiled by Mark Mitchell. It may be copied for personal non-commercial use only in its entirety free of charge. All copies must contain this copyright notice and a hyperlink to www.RayStedman.org if the copy is posted on the Internet. Please direct any questions you may have to webmaster@RayStedman.org.