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Let-there-be-light

Depiction of Light

Light is that property of nature which illumines objects and space allowing vision and life in the world. First introduced on the first day of creation[1], it separated the night from the day. In its manifestation on earth, it is called "Day"[2]. On the fourth day of creation, luminaries ("light bearers") were created to perpetuate the original manifestation of day one.

Light is also a property of God in that it is He that chooses to reveal things to his creation. Throughout the Bible He manifests Himself in forms of light. From the swords of fire at the Garden's gate[3] to the city of New Jerusalem[4], God is "seen" in light, for there is no darkness in Him[5].

Creation

Light in this world began after the earth was formed into a sphere of water[6]. Before that, everything was dark, and probably very cold. The second word attributed to God in Hebrew was א֑וֹר (pronounced ohr). The decree was that light be manifested in the darkness[7]. In completing the first day, the earth was put into motion, forming distinct periods named "Day", the lit portion, and "Night" the dark portion.

Because of the shape of the earth, the source of light partially lit the sky over the horizon, forming first evening and then morning. It was in these hours after sunset and before sunrise that daily sacrifices were to be performed[8].

Properties

Beneficial

Light is first said to be good (Heb: טֹ֑וב)[9]. This is to say, it was pleasant and agreeable to God. Being the first decree recorded, the creation of light is marked out as essential for all that followed. Separating the light from the darkness was the other thing God did on this first day of creation[10]. This was for the benefit of creatures yet to be created, for there is no darkness of any kind where God is[11]. On earth, the light is called "day", being separated from the darkness in its shadow, which was called "night"[12].

Order

The darkness of space was not to remain absolute, for on the fourth day of creation week, God formed two large luminaries near the earth to provide perpetual light. The sun and the moon were accompanied with an innumerable number of stars to provide ambient light everywhere[13]. These lights, in their apparent movement through the sky, would become indicators of passing time[14].

Illumination

Light provides illumination, especially during the times of darkness when God would manifest Himself as a cloud of darkness to the Egyptians while a pillar of fire for Israel[15]. Meanwhile, inside the darkness of the inner chambers of the tabernacle, perpetual illumination was secured by the use of lamps[16]

Guidance

Light allows one to see, promoting knowledge of information. With this knowledge, the one following the illuminated path can know with certainty that he will not fall down. For this reason, light is a useful metaphor for guidance[17].

Verses

  1. Gen. 1:3 (Link)
  2. Gen. 1:5 (Link)
  3. Gen. 3:24 (Link)
  4. Rev. 21:23 (Link)
  5. 1 John 1:5 (Link)
  6. Gen. 1:2-3 (Link)
  7. 2 Cor. 4:6 (Link)
  8. 2 Chr. 31:3 (Link)
  9. Gen 1:4 (Link)
  10. Gen. 1:4 (Link)
  11. 1 John 1:5 (Link)
  12. Gen. 1:5 (Link)
  13. Gen. 1:15 (Link)
  14. Gen. 1:14 (Link)
  15. Exo. 13:21; 1420 (Link)
  16. Exo. 27:20 (Link)
  17. Ps 43:3; 112:4; 119:105, 130; Pr 6:23 (Link)
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