The Destroyer of All Darkness

The Destroyer of All Darkness

Jesus came into this dark and fallen world as the new creation and to bring about a re-creation of all those for whom He died. He is “the Destroyer of the darkness.” In His death on the cross, Jesus comes under the power of darkness as the substitute of those who once lived in darkness. He put Himself under the wrath of God for the sins of His people in order to give them to light of the knowledge of the glory of God in Him. He is the light of the world who shines in the darkness (John 8:12). By His death and resurrection, Jesus destroys the darkness and disseminates the light of God’s grace and truth.  

Anyone who has read the book of Genesis and the gospel of John will immediately notice the similarity of the opening words of each book. Genesis opens with those astonishing first words, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth;” while John opens in this way: “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” As a boy, I remember seeing that parallel but not understanding what it meant. I only came to understand it when the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, at the creation of the universe, shone into the darkness of my heart to give me the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4:6). Significantly, that is the point of the parallel. In redemptive history, we are meant to understand that the coming of the Son into this world was the breaking in of the light of God’s grace and truth to bring about the re-creation of a world that lay in darkness. B.B. Warfield captured this in a profound way, when he wrote,

“The obvious resemblance between the prologue to John’s Gospel and the proem of Genesis is not a matter of mere phraseology and external form. As the one, in the brief compass of a few verses, paints the whole history of the creation of a universe with a vividness which makes the quickened imagination a witness of the process, so the other in still briefer compass traces the whole history of the re-creation of a dead world into newness of life. In both, we are first pointed back into the depths of eternity, when only God was. In both we are bidden to look upon the chaotic darkness of lawless matter or of lawless souls, over which the brooding Spirit was yet to move. In both, as the tremendous pageants are unrolled before our eyes, we are made to see the Living God; and to see him as the Light and the Life of the world, the Destroyer of all darkness, the Author of all good. Here too, however, the Old Testament revelation is the preparation for the better to come. In it we see God as the God of power and of wisdom, the Author and Orderer of all; in this we see him as the God of goodness and mercy, the Restorer and Redeemer of the lost. Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”1

In Christ, the triune God becomes “the Destroyer of all darkness.”

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