SERMON TITLE: “Light in the Darkness”
SERMON TEXT: John 1:1-14
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016, at First UMC
How many of you were here last night for our Christmas Eve service? I like every part of a Christmas Eve service, but my favorite part is when we light the individual candles, turn down the electric lights, and sing Silent Night. There’s something about that candlelight in the darkness that is so sacred and moving. Maybe there are some of you here this morning, though, who didn’t come last night because you have trouble seeing and driving after dark. Or maybe you’re just more of a morning person. Maybe, for you, the sacred and spiritual times are better experienced in the light of Christmas Day.
Light is an important part of our Christmas celebration. Not only do we light candles at church, but everywhere you go there are colored bulbs and white lights glowing from windows and eves and bushes and trees. At the darkest time of the year, lights are brightening up some neighborhoods in megawatt style. Even before our modern days of electricity, the angelic glory of the Lord shown around the shepherds out in their field at night, and the light of an ancient star led the wise men to Jesus.
Of course, the emphasis on light comes not so much from the stories of the angels, shepherds, and wise men as from the more basic Christmas message of the divine light which came into the world as the human being Jesus Christ. The Prophet Isaiah had once said, “The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who lived in a land of deep darkness—on them light has shined.” (9:2). Along that same line of thinking, the Gospel of John tells us that God’s light which was present in creation had come into the world in a new way. The word became flesh and lived among us, so that we might see the light in the darkness.