As we face a new year it is not hard to seek the ‘darkness’ that threatens us:
There are many named victims of terrorist attacks in Brussels, France, Germany etc Yet so many more died UNNAMED in the horrors of Aleppo, Mosul
It would be easy to think our world lives in the darkness of physical terror (to an extent true) Yet, MOST do not see the far more sinister ‘darkness’ is spiritual
This ‘spiritual darkness’ is that which all our Bible readings point to
Australia today lives in spiritual darkness and distress and is now only beginning to realise it
Miranda Divine (well known columnist and panelist and self avowed not ‘hard core practicing Christian’) in article titled: ‘The Left’s bigotry and hypocrisy toward Catholics and Christians is alive and well” wrote in Oct. 15th 2016 when commenting on the American election campaign: “But it’s no surprise that left-wing elites despise Catholics and Christianity, in general. That’s why we are berated constantly about Islamophobia while the plight of the most persecuted religious group in the world is ignored. Christians could soon be extinct from whole swathes of the Middle East and Africa, ethnically cleansed by Islamists”.
- DESPAIR IN THE DARKNESS
- CHRIST, THE LIGHT WHO SHATTERS OUR NIGHT
- CHRIST THROUGH THE CHURCH, AUSTRALIA’S ONLY HOPE!
Readings reproduced on this page:
The Holy Bible: New International Version. 1996, 1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan
Isaiah 9:1–7 (NIV84)
1Nevertheless, there will be no more gloom for those who were in distress. In the past he humbled the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the future he will honor Galilee of the Gentiles, by the way of the sea, along the Jordan—
2The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.
3You have enlarged the nation and increased their joy; they rejoice before you as people rejoice at the harvest, as men rejoice when dividing the plunder.
4For as in the day of Midian’s defeat, you have shattered the yoke that burdens them, the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor.
5Every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood will be destined for burning, will be fuel for the fire.
6For 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.
7Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever. The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.
Matthew 4:12–17 (NIV84)
12When Jesus heard that John had been put in prison, he returned to Galilee.
13Leaving Nazareth, he went and lived in Capernaum, which was by the lake in the area of Zebulun and Naphtali—
14to fulfill what was said through the prophet Isaiah:
15“Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali, the way to the sea, along the Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles—
16the people living in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned.”
17From that time on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.”