I sat awhile in the light today, this light, reading a beautiful passage from a beautiful book, John 1: 1-5. Going deeper into the light, I turned from there to Psalms 36:9 For with thee is the fountain of life: in thy light shall we see light. That is prophetic of Jesus. I marveled at the use of the phrase to see light in light. Of course, it is obviously a figure of speech, much like the words " see the light of day" in our language, because the Hebrew word "ore" means light, illumination, luminary (in every sense, including lightning, happiness, etc.) as well as day, morning or sun. So, you could just as easily say that he is the light in our day (or the light in our light.)
I like the many ways John uses the "I am" phrase for Jesus. I am the bread of life- I am the bread which came down from heaven- I am that bread of life- I am the living bread which came down from heaven- I am the light of the world- as long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world- I am the door of the sheep- I am the door- I am the good shepherd- I am the good shepherd- I am the resurrection, and the life- I am the way, the truth, and the life I am the true vine.
All of these labels provide either life or access to life. Light gives life. Bread gives life, which is why Jesus called Himself the bread of life and living bread. Similarly, the door, the way, and the truth all provide access to Jesus who is the life. Jesus is everything. There is nothing that He is not.
Morn of morns, and day of days!
Beauteous were thy newborn rays:
Brighter yet from death’s dark prison
Christ, the Light of lights, is risen.
He commanded, and His Word
Death and the dread chaos heard;
Oh, shall we, more deaf than they,
In the chains of darkness stay?
Nature yet in shadow lies;
Let the sons of light arise,
And present the morning rays
With sweet canticles of praise.
- "Morn Of Morns, And Day Of Days" part of a Hymn written by Charles Coffin 1736
I am intrigued by the interplay of light and darkness in these three stanzas. It points right back to John's words...for he says it best... "And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not." (1:5)
That word comprehended is from the Greek word katalambano, which means to take eagerly, to seize, possess, apprehend, attain, come upon, comprehend, find, obtain, perceive, or to overtake. It is a picture of opposition...a struggle between light and darkness. We often see darkness as the absence of light. But, it is striking how a lit match will dispel total darkness for a large area. The fact is, any light at all will prevent you from being in darkness. When we go stargazing or astroid watching, we have to wait for awhile for our eyes to adjust to the darkness. You feel blind at first when the light vanishes. I'm sure that must have been how John and the disciples felt when Jesus gave up the Spirit on the cross. Sudden dread chaos as the hymn says. The earth shook, the veil was torn, the dead walked earth...what a dark night! Darkness had seized the Light of the world. A full battle raged. Jesus had said that He was the Light of the world, as long as He was in the world. Now He was gone, and they felt the chains of darkness. But, when Jesus conquered death, suddenly the morning rays of the Light of lights dispelled the darkness all around us sons of light. He is morning and He is day. He is light. Do you see it?