Matt.4:15,16 – The land of Zabulon, and the land of Nephthalim, by the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, Galilee of the Gentiles; the people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up.
It seems that the Lord often comes on the scene in the darkest moments. Israel was in one of those dark times when Christ suddenly appeared. Israel had no prophetic witness for hundreds of years and they had been conquered by Rome. Their sense of national identity and spiritual purpose was long gone. They were without hope unless….. Unless there would be divine intervention. The Lord came to Israel in the darkest of times. Matthew quoted Isaiah who prophesied about a sudden appearance of light in Galilee of the Gentiles. In their moment of darkness an incredible light broke out. The Light of the World, Jesus the Son of God, had come to His people. Here is how Matthew Henry describes this.
“Those that are without Christ, are in the dark, nay, they are darkness itself; as the darkness that was upon the face of the deep. Nay, they were in the region and shadow of death; which denotes not only great darkness, as the grave is a land of darkness, but great danger. A man that is desperately sick, and not likely to recover, is in the valley of the shadow of death, though not quite dead; so the poor people were on the borders of damnation, though not yet damned-dead in law. And, which is worst of all, they were sitting in this condition. Sitting in a continuing posture; where we sit, we mean to stay; they were in the dark, and likely to be so, despairing to find the way out. And it is a contented posture; they were in the dark, and they loved darkness, they chose it rather than light; they were willingly ignorant.”
Maybe you feel like you are in the shadow of death. Good news, you are not dead. Better news, the Light shines the brightest in the darkest places. We have entered into an unprecedented season of darkness in our country. Unrest and destruction in the cities, catastrophic forest fires, devastating storms and flooding, and an unprecedented pandemic in the entire world. The Light is also shining. Step out of the darkness into His blazing light. Shadows always give way to light and the great fountain of light is breaking out in our world.