Living The Promise
Living the Promise: 1. accepting the gift of faith in Jesus (entering into a personal relationship with God through faith in Jesus) 2. living our daily lives like we say we believe. It is growing to be more like Jesus in thought, word and action.
From Isaiah: These verses are part of God’s promise fulfilled in and through Jesus who is the light of the world (John 1)
The word is given to God’s people as an insight into the reestablishing of Jerusalem and the Kingdom of David and as such is a Messianic prophecy… not only is it a word of hope but it is a reminder that God’s light shines through God’s people…
Arise. Shine. For your light has come. We reflect and shine the glory and the love of God.
Because the world is still in darkness… lack of understanding about who God is and God’s desire for us as human beings to live in relationship with God and what that relationship should look like
Darkness shall cover the earth and thick darkness the peoples (nations)
The passage identifies first the Hebrew nation; we understand it to be speaking about Jesus who is the perfection and completion of the Israel; we should also apply it to ourselves as Christians or the Body of Christ…
Today v3. is the result of our response to the coming of God’s glory in Jesus… it is a continuation of what we read in Matthew with the Magi… their recognizing and responding to the revelation of God in and through Jesus… for we are the Body of Christ as we receive the promise… the promise continues to be given through us and fulfilled in and through us as we live the promise.
From Matthew: some months after the birth of Jesus.
In Luke the emphasis on the revelation of the incarnation and birth is to the people of Israel—the children of the promise—emphasis is on role of savior (as well as King since born in Bethlehem—the house of David)
In Matthew emphasis is placed on 1. role of Jesus as King (where is the child who has been born King of the Jews?) and equally important 2. Revelation came to non-Jews so the light that Isaiah proclaims is linked to a) the same star foreseen by Balaam b) the light and glory that is Jesus.
Responses: even though they found Jesus in a barn/stable instead of the palace they accepted the truth of what was revealed to them rather than the logic of the world (in darkness… impaired understanding)… Response was focused on what they could offer—not what could be gained.
Compare to that of Herod… responded with fear… trying to hold onto what he had… thinking of what he might lose… missing the significance that what was revealed to him was worth more than anything else this world could ever hope to offer.