[forthright] Ain't No Sunshine

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From: Forthright Magazine <forthrightmag@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Jan 2010 04:20:57 -0800 (PST)
Forthright Magazine
http://www.forthright.net
Straight to the Cross

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COLUMN: HANDS-ON FAITH

Ain't No Sunshine
 by Barry Newton

In my mind I can still hear Bill Withers voice coming
from that old radio, "Ain't no sunshine when she's
gone, only darkness every day."

How strange it is that while these words sweep us into
identifying with gut wrenching sadness, when a biblical
prophet lyrically casts a similar vision of gloom,
people start checking to see how bright the sun is.

How would we describe our feelings if a foreign nation
were to crush our country, not only killing family and
friends, but also sweeping away everything we know and
hold dear?

Singing the blues to Pharaoh about his future in
encountering the king of Babylon, Ezekiel proclaimed
God's lament:

   "When I snuff you out, I will cover the
   heavens and darken the stars; I will cover
   the sun with a cloud, and the moon will not
   give its light. All the shining lights in
   the heavens I will darken over you; I will
   bring darkness over the land ... when I bring
   about your destruction among the nations."
   (Ezekiel 32:7-9).

Isaiah described Edom’s destruction:

   "dead bodies will send up a stench ... All the
   stars of the heavens will be dissolved and
   the sky rolled up like a scroll; all the
   starry host will fall like withered leaves
   from the vine … my sword ... descends on Edom
   in judgement." (Isaiah 34:3-5).

Warning ancient Israel that the day in which God would
act toward them would not be a day of salvation but a
day of destruction, Amos announced:

   "Why do you long for the day of the LORD?
   That day will be darkness, not light. ... Will
   not the day of the LORD be darkness, not
   light-pitch-dark, without a ray of
   brightness? I hate, I despise your religious
   feasts..." (Amos 5:18,20-21).

Foretelling Babylon's fall, Isaiah proclaimed, "the
stars of heaven and their constellations will not show
their light. The rising sun will be darkened and the
moon will not give its light." (Isaiah 13:10)

When God destroys, there certainly ain't no sunshine,
only darkness fills the day. So will the final day of
the Lord when God judges everyone, will our day be one
of light or darkness?

To avoid the epitome of the most gut wrenching despair
imaginable by being unprepared to face God in judgment,
we need to walk in his light now. We need Jesus.

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