Today's Reading: Isaiah 9:2
Devo Author: Bart Sego
Date: November 28, 2022
One by one, we jumped about four feet down into a small hole in the rocks, arriving in darkness and standing water. Disoriented from the landing and unable to see, we followed the voice of the guy ahead saying, “Stay to your left, and climb out of the pit.” After crawling through a narrow tunnel that bent deeper into the hillside, the cave opened up into a tiny room about the size of a minivan.
Six guys from a men’s Bible study, all in our twenties, had decided it would be exciting to explore a cave on the first afternoon of our weekend camping trip. Traveling only the initial 40-50 feet, we were now wet, cold, and a bit scraped up. It already was much more of an adventure than most had anticipated. However, the most unnerving thing was the absolute darkness - that is, outside of the three tiny flashlights that we shared between the group.
The excursion was just getting started. Over the next two hours we would hike, crawl, and climb our way through a series of underground channels at Devil’s Den State Park. We endured physically difficult segments, one very scary moment bridging a steep ravine, and a few laughs along the way. However, the most anxiety in this cave experience came from the darkness.
Unlike the trail hiking that we did that weekend, we were unable to see what lay ahead. The darkness caused us to misstep and stumble, move slowly to avoid danger, lose bearings, and separate from each other at times. This led to fear, caution, some panic, and a strong desire for the ability to see again. At long last, we turned a corner in another small tunnel and saw a shaft of sunlight that would lead us safely out of the cave.
In the Old Testament, a Hebrew prophet named Isaiah wrote a lot about light coming to darkness. That’s how he described what it would be like when God would send the Messiah to a world living in moral darkness. Darkness represented the sin of mankind, the wandering through life and trying to find a way, the striving and stumbling, the need to avoid dangers, of living without bearings and separated from God.
Isaiah wrote almost 700 years before the birth of Jesus and described that event as a “great light” that would come to “people who walked in darkness.” The connection to the child’s birth becomes clear in tomorrow’s passage, Isaiah 9:6-7
. (Interestingly, the theme of light is used repeatedly in Isaiah’s writings including 49:6
“salvation” and 60:19-20
When was the last time you expressed your gratitude to God for sending us the “great light” of Jesus? Do you find yourself in a season now where you feel surrounded by darkness in life? Trust in the promise written by Isaiah – written to the Hebrew people, but also written for you and me. The Good News for us is that the Light has come, and His name is Jesus!