Come to Understanding

They also that erred in spirit shall come to understanding,

and they that murmured shall learn doctrine. ó Isaiah 29:24

So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense,

and caused them to understand the reading. ó Nehemiah 8:8

December 14, 2007

Volume 6 Number 24

We Have Seen A Great Light

As the time approached for Moses to die, Yahweh revealed to him the future of the people of Israel. Yahweh said that they would forsake Him and would "go a whoring after the gods of the strangers of the land." In doing so, they would break their covenant with Yahweh:

16 And Yahweh said to Moses, Behold, you shall sleep with your fathers; and this people will rise up, and go a whoring after the gods of the strangers of the land, where they go to be among them, and will forsake me, and break my covenant which I have made with them. -Deuteronomy 31

Because Israel would turn from Him and worship other gods, Yahweh said that He would hide His "face" from them and allow evils and troubles to come upon them:

17 Then my anger shall be kindled against them in that day, and I will forsake them, and I will hide my face from them, and they shall be devoured, and many evils and troubles shall befall them; so that they will say in that day, Have not these evils come upon us, because our God is not among us?

18 And I will surely hide my face in that day for all the evils which they shall have performed, in that they have turned to other gods. -Deuteronomy 31

In their prosperity (after they "have eaten and filled themselves, and become fat"), they would turn away from Yahweh and break their covenant with Him:

20 For when I shall have brought them into the land which I swore to their fathers, that flows with milk and honey; and they shall have eaten and filled themselves, and become fat; then will they turn to other gods, and serve them, and provoke me, and break my covenant. -Deuteronomy 31

They would deceive themselves into believing that the prosperity which came from Yahweh was from other gods. Comparing Israel with a wife who had become a harlot, Yahweh says she took His gifts of food, such as corn (grain), wine (new wine - juice), and oil, as well as the wealth of gold and silver and offered them to Baal:

8 For she did not know that I gave her corn, and wine, and oil, and multiplied her silver and gold, which they prepared for Baal. -Hosea 2

Those who have rejected the Word of Yahweh walk in darkness. They turn their backs to the living God and call upon "familiar spirits" (the spirits of the dead) and their wizards in their time of need:

19 And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?

20 To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. -Isaiah 8

Frustrated and confused, they give credit to other gods for any blessings they may have received from Yahweh, while blaming Him for their hardships. Unwilling to repent and walk in the light, they walk further into the darkness:

21 And they shall pass through it, greatly distressed and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward.

22 And they shall look unto the earth; and behold trouble and darkness, dimness of anguish; and they shall be driven to darkness. -Isaiah 8

How easy it is to forget the causes for Godís judgement! After being ravished by the Babylonians, the fearful and confused remnant of Judah fled into Egypt and remembered their lives in Judah. It seemed to them that life was better when they had worshipped the Babylonian goddess referred to as the "queen of heaven:"

17 But we will certainly do whatever thing goes forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes, in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: for then had we plenty of victuals, and were well, and saw no evil.

18 But since we left off to burn incense to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto her, we have wanted all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine. -Jeremiah 44

They had forgotten that it was because they were worshipping the "queen of heaven" in the first place that caused Yahweh to finally pass the judgment for their destruction. Yahweh explained what they were doing in Judah and Jerusalem:

18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings to other gods, that they may provoke me to anger.

19 Do they provoke me to anger? says Yahweh: do they not provoke themselves to the confusion of their own faces?

20 Therefore thus says the Lord Yahweh; Behold, my anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place, upon man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched. -Jeremiah 7

Even though the people of Israel had lost their way in the darkness, Yahweh promised that He would again shine His light upon them:

1 Nevertheless the dimness shall not be such as was in her distress, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict her by the way of the sea, beyond the Jordan, in Galilee of the nations.

2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them has the light shined. -Isaiah 9

Darkness was not only upon Israel. It also covered the Gentile nations of the earth. Isaiah, however, wrote that a Great Light of the glory of Yahweh would rise upon them:

1 Arise, shine; for your light is come, and the glory of Yahweh is risen upon you.

2 For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but Yahweh shall arise upon you, and his glory shall be seen upon you.

3 And the Gentiles shall come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your rising. -Isaiah 60

The Great Light is Yahshua the Messiah (called Jesus Christ), who went to the land of Zebulun and Naphtali to show the fulfillment of the prophesies of His coming:

16 The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light has sprung up.

17 From that time Yahshua began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. -Matthew 4

He is that Great Light that shines upon the world. Even though He is the light of men, those who continue in darkness cannot comprehend His light:

4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

5 And the light shines in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. -John 1

The great witness that Yahshua is the Messiah, who came as the Light of the world, was John the Baptist:

7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

9 That was the true Light, which lights every man that comes into the world. -John 1

That Light is God. He came in His own name in the form of a man, in the flesh. He has no darkness in Him. Therefore, those who claim to be in His presence also can have no darkness in them:

5 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

6 If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Yahshua the Messiah his Son cleanses us from all sin. -1 John 1

Those who will not believe that Yahshua is the true Light love darkness and hate the Light:

19 And this is the condemnation, that light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20 For every one that does evil hates the light, neither comes to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. -John 3

Those who believe in Him have the Light of life:

12 Then spoke Yahshua again to them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life. -John 8

The old commandment is that the Light is coming. The new commandment is that the old one has been fulfilled and the Light has come:

7 Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you have heard from the beginning.

8 Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shines. -1 John 2

God commanded that the Light shine out of the darkness:

6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Yahshua the Messiah. -2 Corinthians 4

The Light that now shines in our once darkened hearts reveals the light of the knowledge of the glory of God.



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