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Read: Isaiah 8:1 – 9:7

Focus:
The people walking in darkness
    have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
    a light has dawned.  Isaiah 9:2

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given,
    and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Isaiah 9:6

After reading about years and years of rebellious leadership, lives full of compromise and sin, and warning after warning of God’s impending wrath, we come to a passage of great hope. Hallelujah! I needed to read that. These words, I have heard so many times. These words sung in songs and preached about during Christmas Eve services are like a healing balm to my weary soul.

Our God promised to send a light, and not just any light, a great light into our darkness. Those living in Isaiah’s time needed this hope – their darkness was thick around them. Likewise, we find ourselves watching the news, listening to people around us and we can be overwhelmed by the darkness of our world.

But take heart! Have hope!

“The people walking in darkness
have seen a great light;
on those living in the land of deep darkness
a light has dawned.”

Matthew quotes this prophecy when describing Jesus in Matthew 4:15-16. Then John refers to Jesus as the light in John 1:9.

In John 8:12 Jesus says it of himself. The verse reads: When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

My NIV Life Application Study Bible has some powerful commentary about Jesus being the light of the world.

“Jesus Christ is the Creator of life, and his life brings light to mankind. In his light we see ourselves as we really are (sinners in need of a Savior). When we follow Jesus, the true Light, we can avoid walking blindly and falling into sin. He lights the path ahead of us so we can see how to live. He removes the darkness of sin from our lives.”

And then when specifically commenting on John 8:12 it says: “Jesus was speaking in the part of the temple where the offerings were put, where candles burned to symbolize the pillar of fire that led the people of Israel through the desert (Exodus 13:21,22). In this context, Jesus called himself the light of the world. The pillar of fire represented God’s presence, protection, and guidance. Jesus brings God’s presence, protection, and guidance.”

All of this commentary points so well to what Isaiah 9 goes on to say in verse 6:
For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Take a moment to personalize this verse. Read verse 6 again and put your name in the place of us.

For to ____ a child is born,
to _____ a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Jesus is the light of the world but more specifically, if you have made him Lord of your life, he is your light, your Wonderful Counselor, your Mighty God, your Everlasting Father, and your Prince of Peace.

Not so he can do your bidding, quite the contrary, so you can look to him for love, protection, guidance, and hope and live as he wants you to live.

I don’t know about you, but I need all Isaiah says that Jesus is.

I need a wonderful counselor to help me navigate this whole mom thing. I need help figuring out how to discipline and train and love my children well. I need good, sound advice on how to be a good wife and friend. Whatever your life situation is, I am sure you need God’s wisdom and direction.

When we look at the world we live in, it is easy to see we need a mighty God. We can look to our mighty God when we fear for the future or when we are up at 3 in the morning with a fevered child.

Because of Jesus we have access to a mighty God who is bigger than our circumstances. We can take comfort in the fact that there is a God who is bigger than the evil in this world. Bigger than the diagnosis, bigger than the rift in the family, and a God who already knows the end of the story.

And not only is he big and powerful, but he loves us better than a perfect earthly father ever could. As a mom of four young children I am constantly giving out and caring for others. But God cares for me and he cares for you.

We have a heavenly father who loves us more deeply than we will ever understand. And because he is our father, we can feel comfortable going to him for counsel and seeking his power and might in times of need.

Last of all this scripture tells us Jesus is our Prince of Peace. When the world is crashing in and the worries of life wake us up at night or flood our thoughts throughout the day, we need the Prince of Peace. We have access to all of this when we put Jesus first and pursue a relationship with him.

He is the light of the world and he is the light of your world.

He is Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace for the world, but because of what Jesus did on the cross, he is all those things specifically for you.

When we put Him first, the unbelievable truth is that we get a relationship with the God of the universe and in him we can have love like no other, protection more powerful than any earthly threat, and hope that pierces through the darkness of this world.

Prayer:
Father, we don’t deserve any of this. But you are gracious and abounding in love. You have not left us in the dark, but have made a way for us. Lord, let your light shine in me, so I can see how I can follow you better and let your light shine out of me, so I can point others to your hope as well. To You be the glory this day and always! Amen

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