Dr. D. James, Principal and teacher with The Lay School here in Clinton, presented a short devotional before the faculty Friday morning. “In the course of color-coding the gospels of Mark and Luke in the Tyndale and Matthews Bibles, my attention was called to Luke 11:35 which reads as follows:
35 Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness. [REFERENCE: GREAT verse to be used in the fight against mysticism, Gnosticism, and other such “ISMS”.*****]
And if there is one over-riding concern that has manifested itself during the course of these series of studies that have included the sacred writings of the world’s major religions; the writings of Gnosticism, mysticism, and other such variant belief systems apart from mainstream evangelicalism, it is summed up in this verse from Luke. In so many of these other writings it seems that those labeled as the “children of light” more closely resemble the “children of darkness”; and the “children of darkness” more closely resemble the “children of light”; a phenomenon that has been noticed by numerous scholars, many who have translated various copies of these ancient writings into English and have offered their comments and insights in their respective “Prefaces”. I have personally,” James explained, “and frequently, found myself seduced by the ‘dark side’, if you will, of many of these writings. And I consider myself very knowledgeable when it comes to Bible. Many times as I would be reading a passage, I would have to stop and research what the Bible actually said in order to either substantiate what was being alleged in these other writings, or to negate that which was being claimed. There seems to be one common denominator that predetermines where any exegete will emerge within the theological spectrum: those who accept and interpret the Bible passages literally as written almost inevitably wind up in the fundamentalist and/or conservative camp, theologically speaking; while those who accept and interpret the Bible passages in any of the FASS, (Figurative, Allegorial, Symbolic, or Spiritual) methods, inevitably wind up in the moderate and/or liberal camp, theologically speaking. The power of the ‘dark side’ of these other writings is bad enough, but when the FASS methods of interpretation are applied to the Scriptures first, ignoring the literal interpretation, Jesus words in this verse from Luke 11 ring loud and clear! Each and every Christian, indeed, each and every person, regardless of their religion, must eventually decide what they are going to do about Jesus Christ. We must be diligent in making sure that our own interpretations of God’s word are such that we can be called the true “children of light” rather than find ourselves believing a lie, or a series of lies, and in actuality, be the “children of darkness”! The difference between the two often defies logic and rational thought. One of the recurring themes of the Bible is that God has mandated that the pure, plain, and simple gospel of Jesus Christ confound the wise and be considered by them as foolishness. The literalness of the Biblical record is absurd to these well-learned individuals. And the deceptiveness of the teachings of darkness and the manner in which the proponents of the same will present, manipulate, and distort the truths of God’s Word requires that the true seeker be ever wary, investing much time in reading and studying God’s Word, prior to expanding their intellectual horizons in reading and studying these other ancient writings. The standard by which any interpretation of Scripture is proffered, is the unadulterated Word of God, searched in its entirety! Even when the teachings of that Word seem contradictory, doubtful, fabulous, and/or unbelieveable, the true seeker must retreat to the position that God’s Word is true, whether we understand it or not, for to accept any lesser position opens a proverbial Pandora’s box of difficult and oftentimes unanswerable questions in our attempt to utilize reason rather than exercise faith! Therefore the question for each of us becomes, are you sure that the light in you is the true light and not darkness disguised as light?