He Shall Overcome

Last week we talked about the fact that Jesus was not a new idea for God. He is God. 

“And the Word was. And the Word is. And the Word will be…” – Sara Groves

We celebrate Christmas because it is the advent “…the Beginning” of God’s plan for the salvation of all men. But God’s plan for our salvation did not begin in a manger in Bethlehem.

John 1:1-5

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning.

3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

But this week we are going to take a look at how His plan manifests itself.  We are going to look at the scripture from the perspective of those of us left here on Earth to contend with the darkness.

What part of this world did Jesus Christ, the Word, make?

Verse 3 “All Things”

How much of this creation did Jesus Christ, the Word, create?

Verse 3 “All Things”

 How much of God’s creation was made without Jesus Christ, the Word?

Verse 3 “nothing”

How much of this creation is a mystery to our Lord, Jesus Christ, the Word?

Verse 3 “nothing”

 John 1:4-5 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

So in the beginning God said let there be light. When did the light stop?

Verse 5 “The light shines in the darkness”

John isn’t saying that the light shined until the darkness came. John is saying the light SHINES in the darkness. It is continuous.

This light is not just the opposite of the darkness, he is beyond the darkness.

When we are in the darkness this light shines.

Verse 5 In him was life, and that life was the light of men.

…that life was the light of men.

Life

Does it ever get dark? Yes

It gets dark everywhere for everyone and in everyone’s life.

But will it get light again? Yes it will

There is a phenomenon called “Polar Night”. 

 Polar night is experienced at that extreme ends of our Earth. The Poles.

In regions inside the polar circles, the length of the time when the sun is below the horizon varies from 20 hours at the Arctic Circle and Antarctic Circle to 179 days at the Poles.

People who live in Alaska and in the arctic circle can become depressed and can feel like things are hopeless as the darkness last longer and longer. They may sleep too much, have little energy, and crave sweets and starchy foods. They may also feel depressed.

Sound familiar?

Sound like your life?

Amazingly the rate by which people are affected by this seasonal affect disorder can be measured by where they are in exposure to the darkness.

1.5 percent in Florida and about 9 percent in the northern US

So what is the answer? Light

For the people who suffer from seasonal affect disorder the answer is to be exposed to light.

A couple of weeks ago we talked about us being the light. We talked then about the fact that others would gain access to the light through us.

This light that John is speaking of is the source, the source of life, Eternal Life. We must expose people to the light. But we must believe that the light is eternal and will always win.

John 3:16-18 16″For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Just as the light had no beginning this light has no end.

This light cannot be contained.

For the believer, No matter how long it is dark, it will be light again.

But no matter how close to the poles you get there will always be light again.

Verse 5 – The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

Those who don’t believe don’t grasp this one thing.

You see human nature is to be pulled into the darkness.

We aren’t perfect. We do stuff and we have to pay the consequences. Other people do things we have to pay the consequences for.

It’s “human nature”

Alone we’re helpless, vulnerable, flawed… Broken

John 1:1-5

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning.

3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

“the word” has never been flawed, never been vulnerable, never been broken.

John 1:4-5 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness

“the word” overcomes.

No matter how depraved we might be, He will overcome

His light will shine through it.

No matter how hurt we might be… eventually, He will overcome

His light will shine through it.

No matter how deep into the darkness we might wonder if we will follow Him, we shall overcome

His light will shine through it.

 Genesis 1:3 God said, “Let there be light—and there was light.”

Eternal and ever existing; Jesus Christ. The light will overcome.

You know for many people in this world the United States is a light that shines through their darkness. But one of the darkest chapters in human history is reflected here in the way we treated each other.

From the 1500’s to the late 1800’s this country operated what we now know as the Atlantic slave trade. This wretched business run by white slave traders brought 9+ million African men and women to the New World to be sold as slaves. Their crime? Their color.

These men and women were property. They were ox to pull a plow. They were tractors to pull cotton. They were cooks, cleaners, stable cleaners, wheeler barrels, and drivers. But worse yet they were the objects of their masters anger and beaten to shreds. They were objects of their master’s lust as they were raped and molested. They were chained, whipped, confined, and dehumanized for four hundred years.

Where was the light?

Abraham Lincoln, Speech at Peoria, Illinois

October 16, 1854 

I cannot but hate the declared indifference for slavery’s spread. I hate it because of the monstrous injustice of slavery itself. I hate it because it deprives our republican example of its just influence in the world — enables the enemies of free institutions, with plausibility, to taunt us as hypocrites — causes the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity, and especially because it forces so many really good men amongst ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil liberty — criticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest.

Lincoln was not a messiah for the black people of this country. He was a reflection of the light.

Freed by the “emancipation proclamation” and the blood of the civil war spilled by themselves and their white brothers of the north they found themselves in a country that found there freedom possible, but there equality ludicrous.

In fact a phrase was coined. “Separate, but equal”

For another hundred years; If they stepped outside of the separate world again they were beaten, hung, and dehumanized.

They couldn’t drink from the same fountain, use the same bathroom, eat in the same restaurant, or even site in the front of a bus.

Where was the light?

[SLIDE]

In 1955 in Montgomery, Alabama, a 42 year old woman named Rosa Parks looked at the bus driver James Blakes and refused to move from her seat to allow a white passenger to have her seat.

A 26 year old preacher named Martin Luther King Jr. joined Ms. Parks in Montgomery for what became a 382 day boycott of the bus system in Montgomery.  The days that followed in the fight for the right live as human beings in this country would include dog attack, hangings, beatings, and eventually would cost Dr. King his life.

Where was the light?

In 2008 a black man cannot legally be denied a job because of his race. A black woman cannot be denied access to a college because of her race.

Racism will never be dead. But really… How bizarre would it be to our children to a black man escorted from a restaurant because he is black?

Today things are not perfect, men are still involved. But the darkness has not been able to contain the light.

Light will find a way.

We must know that the power that created all things, the light that is the life of men is unable to be repressed.

We must know that nothing is beyond His ability to accomplish.

There is always hope. There will always be victory in the end.

The polar night in your life may last  20 hours or 179 days,  but the light will shine again.

Paul and Silos Singing

Acts 16:23-30

23After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24Upon receiving such orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.

 25About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose. 27The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. 28But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

 29The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. 30He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

I liked to think they were singing “We shall overcome”

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About toddcbrown

The body of Christ will never grow if the Pastor is the one using his gifts to MAKE IT grow through some cool program or inspiring turn of a phrase.
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