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“They saw not one another, neither rose any from his place for three days: but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings” (Ex. 10:23).
There is something glorious here for us. The pagans were struck with darkness and could not rise, could not go out, could not move for three days, but all the children of Israel had light in their homes. The text doesn’t tell us exactly how this worked. It doesn’t say if there was some kind of massive cosmic miracle taking place or if the darkness was simply less intense in Goshen, such that the lanterns and candles actually worked or whether there was some other supernatural light being given. But either way, this moment is glorious. There was thick, paralyzing darkness in Egypt, but all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.
The implication seems to be that there was still darkness in the land of Goshen, but that while Israel had to stay home, there was a relative blessing in the midst of the plague. Everyone was stuck at home, no one could go out, but where there was an additional darkness inside the homes of the Egyptians, all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings. Everyone had to stay home, but there were two very different experiences of that darkness. In one experience, there was no variation, only darkness, inside and outside, all the way through, but in the other experience, there was significant variation. The darkness was on the outside, but there was light on the inside. All of the children of Israel had light in their dwellings.
It is still unclear exactly what has happened in our land, in our world, and what is happening. Whatever your views of this current moment, whether you are more concerned about the virus, or more concerned about the panic, or more concerned about government overreach and loss of civil liberties, or if it’s some or all of the above, whatever your opinions, whatever your concerns, the message is that for those who know God through Christ, no matter the darkness outside, there should be light in your homes, light in your families, light on the inside. Whatever the darkness, whatever the hardship, whatever the cause, you can say it however you like, but your sentence should end: but all of the children of Israel had light in their dwellings. But all the people of God had light in their homes.
So my question is: if you call yourself a Christian, if you profess faith in Jesus Christ, is there light in your home? Is your home full of light? When the story is told of these days, will it be said of you and your family, that even though the world was full of darkness, the people of God had light in their dwellings? What is your home like? What is your family like? What is your marriage like? Is it full of light? Is it a joyful place to be? Is it a comforting place to be? Or is it fearful, biting, angry, grumpy, cold, or distant?
The Light of the Word
The people of God should always have light in their homes because they have the Word of God in their homes. “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” (Ps. 119:105). In Ephesians, it says, “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light… Speaking to yourselves in psalms, and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Eph. 5:8, 19-20). Do you want light in your home? Then you must have the Word open, and you must have no fellowship with the works of darkness. You must have no fellowship with the works of darkness on the internet, on Netflix, or in your heart. But rather you must expose them, hate them, repent of them. And instead you must read the word, sing the word, and obey the word. The Word is light. If you put a garbage can over a lamp, it won’t give any light. So open the Word. Open it and read it. Read it out loud. Let it shine. Read all of it. Commit to obeying it. Do whatever it says with joy. And sing the Word, or start learning how if you don’t know how. And notice that singing the word is how it dwells in you richly. That’s how you turn the dimmer switch up to full blast. Do you want the word to shine in your home brightly? Then sing the word loudly. Do it with thanksgiving always and for all things. When the Word is in your mouth and in your heart, your home will be full of light.
The Light of Fellowship
The people of God should always have light in their homes because they have fellowship with God and one another in their homes. “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. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not practice the truth: but if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 Jn. 1:5-7). Again, you cannot say you have fellowship with God and walk in darkness. You cannot serve God and mammon. You cannot love God and love the world or the things in the world (1 Jn. 1:15). If anyone loves the world, the love of God is not in him. And a bunch of church-going people really need to hear this word. You go to church, you sing in the choir, maybe you are even in leadership, but you do not love God. You love the world. You are full of the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, and you do not know the Father.
How can it be that a land full of so many professing Christians is so corrupt and so thoroughly wicked? How can it be that cities full of so many church going people murder so many babies, by the thousands, every single day? The answer is that there are many people in this land who think they are Christians, but they are not. They are full of darkness and there is no light in them at all. They do not have fellowship with God, and they are walking in darkness. They are liars. And this is evident in their relationships with God and those around them. They have constant bickering with their spouse, tensions with their children and parents and co-workers. Why do they not have fellowship with those around them? Because they are walking in darkness.
But the promise is right here: If we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. And many Christian people don’t even know what that fellowship is like. Do you know the joy of Christian fellowship? The peace? The glorious freedom of having no secrets, no bitterness, nothing to hide? Many people have settled for an average American home, which is not the same thing as a Christian home. A Christian home is full of light, full of joy, full of peace, full of fellowship.
And do not misunderstand: Christian fellowship is not sinless, but it is fellowship that is constantly being cleansed by the blood of Christ. And this happens by confession and forgiveness: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Do you want light in your home? Then confess your sins. Do you want light in your family? Then forgive your dad, forgive your spouse, forgive your brother, your sister. And get back into fellowship with God.
Conclusion: The Light of Christ
Of course, all of this is pointing ultimately to Christ Himself. The light we are talking about, the light we want in our homes, in our families, in our marriages is not some impersonal force, some mystical power, some religious experience or feeling. No, the light we are talking about is the presence of a person. And that person is Jesus of Nazareth. He is the Light of God. He is the Word of God, and since He is the Son of God, He is the One who grants us fellowship with God. No one comes to the Father, except through Him
If want light in our homes, we must have Jesus in our homes. And this is not just a nice religious saying. This is not me saying that you need traditional family values in your home. This is not me saying that you need to try harder or turn over a new leaf. No. We need Jesus in our homes. The reason Jesus has been largely banished from our public square is because we didn’t want Him there. And we didn’t want Him there because we have largely ignored Him in our homes.
“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness; and the darkness did not comprehend it… That was the true Light, which lightens every man that comes into the world” (Jn. 1:4-5, 9). You cannot have a home full of light unless you have Jesus in your home. And if you have Jesus in your home, there is nothing that can make your home dark.
This is just another way of saying what Paul says in Romans 8: “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? For I am persuade that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 8:35-39).
And if you have that kind confidence, then your life will be full of light, your home will be full of light. How can you have that kind of assurance? How can you have that kind of confidence? The only way to have that kind of assurance is to have Christ dwelling in your heart, Christ living inside of you. Christ in you, is the only hope of glory (Col. 1:27).
But how can Christ, a man, dwell inside you? How can Christ be in our homes and in our families? The answer is Christ is risen from the dead. Christ rose victorious over all sin, all death, all decay, all tyranny, all guilt, all shame, all darkness. And He rose with healing in His wings. He rose with endless life and light to bring. He rose to make all things new. He died so that your sin might die in Him, and He rose so that you might rise with Him.
So the free offer of the gospel is that if you confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead, then you will be saved. His light will shine on you. His light will fill you. And Christ Himself will come and dwell in you and drive away all the darkness.
This is what we need our land right now. Do we want the public square full of Christian light? Then our homes must be full of Christian light. Do we want the darkness of abortion, the darkness of sodomy, the darkness of economic insanity, the darkness of government tyranny driven back? Then let there be light in our homes. That light is the Light of the Word, the light of fellowship with the Father and the Son, the light of Christ filling our hearts and our homes.
In the coming years, let it be said of these days, that though they were very dark, all the children of Israel had light in their dwellings. All the people of God had light in their homes. The Christian homes were full of unexplainable joy.