Lights in the Darkness

Bible Reading: Philippians 2:9-16

Philippians 2:14-16, “Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life.”

An Arkansas woman was with her teenage son, waiting in the drive through at a
Starbucks, when they noticed something unusual. The Starbucks employee was
praying with a customer at the front of the line. The woman was touched by the
employee simply being a light for Jesus and hopes the situation will inspire others to demonstrate kindness. She went on to say, “This act of kindness and boldness in faith… gives me hope and reminds myself and hopefully others that being kind and praying for someone doesn’t cost anything.” It’s a good thing to shine as a light in the world.

Two terms speak of the nature of the world in which we live. The first, crooked, comes from a Greek term used to describe winding rivers, or crooked roads. Here it is used of behavior contrary to God’s standards. Paul, speaking of that society and all societies, says they miss the mark when it comes to upholding God’s standard (Romans 3:23).

Now, of course things are this way because of sin. When Adam and Eve sinned against God in the garden, they unleashed a contagion of sin in this world which has infected every person who has been born ever since (Romans 5:12). The evidence of this contagion is everywhere apparent.

The other term, perverse, means to twist or distort. Here it speaks to the condition in which wrong becomes right, a condition readily apparent in our own day (Isaiah 5:20). In a perverse generation, things are turned around. Romans 1:18-32 speaks to this. In the downward spiral of sin, what is good is rejected and what is evil is celebrated (Romans 1:23, 25, 26, 27).

There is a temptation to focus on such flaws and curse the darkness, yet that’s not what God has called us to do. Though the children of God whom Paul addressed lived amid a crooked and perverse generation, what was true for them is true for us, true for believers around the world today and will remain so until Christ’s return. If we are expecting anything different, then we are going to be disappointed. God has called us instead to confront the darkness by living out our relationship with Jesus before the lost. The difference in our lives working to adorn the gospel message of which we speak (John 13:34-35; 1 Peter 3:15; Colossians 4:50).

When Dr. John Mitchell served as president of Multnomah Bible College one of his students came to him with a problem. He asked Dr. Mitchell to pray for him that God might provide him with a different job. It seems that he was forced to work in a tough environment surrounded by nothing but unbelievers. He had to put up with a lot of cursing and swearing and rude language. Dr. Mitchell surprised the man in his response, saying, “I’m not going to pray God will take you out of that place, but that God will keep you there where God has provided you a unique opportunity to bear witness for Jesus Christ.”

There are people all around who are living in darkness, without God and without hope. God incredibly blessed you by opening your eyes to the light of the gospel. His intent is that You in turn, would be used by Him in making the gospel known. Let His light shine through you!


Let your love flow through me
Let your love flow through me
Make me a blessing Lord wherever I may be
Keep me pure, Keep me clean
So that you may be seen
Let your love, Let your love flow through me

So many folks are lonely
O they need someone To care,
And when I look about and see them
I can’t help, making this my prayer

Let Your light shine through me
Let Your light shine through me
O Lord make me a blessing wherever, I may be
Keep me pure, keep me clean so that You might be seen
O let Your Light, let Your light shine through me

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

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