10 Who among you fears the LORD
and obeys the word of his servant?
Let him who walks in the dark,
who has no light,
trust in the name of the LORD
and rely on his God.
11 But now, all you who light fires
and provide yourselves with flaming torches,
go, walk in the light of your fires
and of the torches you have set ablaze.
This is what you shall receive from my hand:
You will lie down in torment. (NIV)
In these two verses, Isaiah draws for us the clear distinction of the heavenly Kingdom of Light against the earthy kingdom of darkness lit only by the man-made light of torches. Those who waited and persevered in faith would walk in the darkness until the awesome blessing of The Light. Those who did not fear The Lord, and shunned His ways for immediate relief from the darkness, lived by the artificial flickering of weak and deceiving torch light...perhaps it would be neon today.
The word light as used here is a special Hebrew word for a special type of light. Nogahh is not just light...it is the shining splendor as of a fire, of the sun when it is rising, of a sword, of the glory surrounding God. The light of life. David used the word nogahh to describe Our Lord riding out of heaven to deliver him in 2 Samuel 22:13 . Ezekiel and Habakkuk used the same word in describing The Heavenly One.
Those living before the coming of The Christ were walking in the dark. Many followed the man-made light of feeble torches, and went to lie down in torment. Fewer waited in the darkness of faith. Then...behold!
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...
In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.
John the Disciple here uses a special Greek word, Phos. Again, phos is no regular light. It is a heavenly light such as surrounds angels when they appear on earth, extremely delicate, subtle, pure, of brilliant quality. It is a light of truth and its knowledge, together with the spiritual purity associated with it. The Greek phos is the nogahh that the prophets foresaw. It was the fulfillment of the hope of man...we no longer had to walk in the darkness in faith.
The Light, the Nogahh, the Phos, had come. All who believe and receive have The Light to guide them. All who shun The Light, who choose to abide in the darkness lit only by the neon glow of earthly light, will go down to lie in torment.
Faire Knights of the Table Round, we are to love these even unto death, that they might see and receive the phos. For John writes later that although the old commandment of The Word is still with us, a new commandment of loving our brothers...
1 John 2:8-11
Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and you, because the darkness is passing and the [phos] true light is already shining. Anyone who claims to be in the [phos] light but hates his brother is still in the darkness. Whoever loves his brother lives in the [phos] light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.
Have you ever heard those stories of those who return to life after seeing "the light"? They always seem to revel in the brightness, the purity, of the light they're approaching. They have beheld the nogahh, they've been in the presence of the phos. They usually say that they didn't want to come back, to leave the light.
Have you ever noticed that most things bad seem to flourish in the dark? Have you ever been in the dark, avoiding the light of God? Reveled in the artificial light of worldly pleasure? Most of us have. It is a place of false comfort, a seedy place that we are ashamed of when in the presence of The Light.
Are you are still living in the darkness, hoping against hope on neon dreams? Now is the time to change your destiny...don't go down to lie in eternal torment.
Behold the Nogahh! Come into the Phos! Receive Jesus Christ as Your Lord, and walk in The True Light of Eternal Life!
Sir Chuck, awash in the glory of The True Light