Were you ever afraid of the dark when you were a child? Perhaps a cold shiver of fear crept upon you when you found yourself alone in the dark. As I look upon our world it is obvious that the dark shadows of sin are lengthening. To me, it seems that our society is plunging headlong into the darkness of evil. Crime and violence, greed and materialism, anger and hatred are on the increase. Our society, that used to side with many of the biblical principles of morality is embracing the dark side. We see an abandonment of the sanctity of marriage, an all-out acceptance of homosexuality, and a confusion on what is right and what is wrong.
As the Apostle Paul began his letter to the Romans he painted a dark picture of the heart of man. He uses words to describe the human condition without God that are not politically correct today. Phrases like: “the wrath of God”, “without excuse”, “darkened heart”, “became fools”, “God gave them up”, and “worthy of death” are all listed in Romans 1. The dark shadows of our sinful heart described here are truly devastating. When I was a child playing hide-and-seek outside, I often would get a little afraid of the dark. It was then I looked up. The darkness was pierced through by the brightness of the stars and moon. The stars and moon are there in the daytime as well but in order for us to appreciate the brilliance of these lights we need to see the darkness. As Romans 1 paints the picture of the dark shadows of sin we encounter a brilliant light in Romans 5:8: “But God demonstrates His own love toward us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us”. In order for us to see the brilliance of the good news we must see the awful darkness of the bad news.
Jesus Christ and the good news of His salvation is the only light that will penetrate the dark shadows that are lengthening around us. May we shine the light of the gospel everywhere we go.
Pastor Stultz has been writing this weekly devotional for many years. In 2009, he published a compilation of devotionals in book form, also called Moments of Meditation