Darkness can be oppressive, particularly when you don’t have any source of light available. Imagine being trapped in a mine or a cave, deep underground, when your last light flickers out. It is dark, oppressively-dark. Any type of light would be a welcome sight, but there is NONE.
Several years ago, my wife and I took a tour of Fantastic Caverns, which is just outside Springfield Missouri. Guests ride in an open trailer towed by a Jeep. The cavern is normally well-lit, but at a certain point deep in the cavern, the guide stops the Jeep, goes to a switch on the wall, and turns out the lights. There is no natural light that deep inside the cavern, so it is dark, oppressively-dark. Even a candle would be welcome-respite from the dark, but there are no candles either. Human eyes can’t even adjust to absolute-darkness. After what seems like an eternity, the guide turns the lights back on. What a welcome-relief!
As oppressive as physical-darkness can be, it doesn’t hold a candle to emotional and psychological darkness. I have been through some very dark periods in my life, particularly after my wife committed suicide. I also went through a very dark period in my life after my current “wife” left me. I felt like I had lost everything worth living-for, so why was I even here? I asked God “WHY???“, but my pleas were met with stony-silence. Had God also abandoned me? Why did it take SO many years before God gave me an answer I could understand and live with? Didn’t God care about healing my broken-heart? It certainly didn’t seem like He cared.
As oppressive as physical darkness can be, and as oppressive as emotional and psychological darkness can be, none of them hold a candle to the oppression of spiritual-darkness. Spiritual-darkness is unrelenting, and no matter how hard we try, we can’t cure it ourselves. People try reading self-help books, getting counseling or therapy, or even going to support-groups, but as good as those things may be, they can’t cure spiritual-darkness. Religion isn’t a cure either.
The arrival of a rescue-team with fresh lights and help getting out will bring welcome-relief to miners or cavers trapped deep-underground, and there are many good resources to help people going through the emotional and psychological trauma of losing a loved-one to death or estrangement, but to cure our spiritual darkness, we must go the the Source. The Good News is that there IS a Source of light to cure our spiritual-darkness, and that Source is Jesus Christ.
For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:13-14)
The cause of our spiritual-darkness is our sin, and try as we might, we can’t live a sinless life. When our first parents, Adam and Eve, sinned against God, they left us a legacy of being born with a sinful-nature. It is inescapable on our own, which is why we must be rescued, and ONLY Jesus Christ can rescue us, because He alone is sinless. As “good” as we may think that we are, we are hopelessly drowning in our sin. We are trapped deep-underground with no hope of making it back to the surface on our own. Our only hope is the ultimate “rescue-team“, Jesus Christ, for He, and He-alone is able to bring us back home.
That may sound harsh, but it really is Good-News, because we can quit our struggle to rescue ourselves and trust in Jesus Christ to do for us what we can’t do for ourselves, rescue us. Our deepest need is for rescue, for forgiveness of our sins and restoration into a right relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
If you die without being rescued by God, you will die in your sins and you will remain “underground” forever. Have you admitted that you can’t save yourself and come to Jesus Christ for salvation? If you haven’t, I pray that you will do so today, in this moment, while it is still fresh in your mind and heart.