Tuesday, October 28, 2014


"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."            John 1:5

Simon and Garfunkel wrote a song in 1965 called "The Sound of Silence".  The words of the song resonated with a generation that was disillusioned from the Vietnam War, unbridled sex and materialism, and a continual wrestling with the hollow question that never goes away - WHY AM I HERE?  The first verse addressed the familiar face of darkness:

                                                "Hello darkness, my old friend,
                                               I've come to talk with you again,
                                              Because a vision softly creeping
                                              Left its seeds while I was sleeping,
                                      And the vision that was planted in my brain
                                                           Still remains
                                                   Within the sound of silence....

I remember as a youngster listening to the beautiful harmonies in this song and thinking, "This is so beautiful but it's so sad."  Simon and Garfunkel, as so many songwriters of that day, had a gift for pulling back the curtain and revealing the pain of their lost and confused generation but they didn't offer any real answers--because they had none.

Ironically, about the same time this song was being released, the roots of the Jesus People Movement were just beginning to break through the hard cynical ground of the late sixties and early seventies offering hope and life to a generation filled with despair and loneliness.  Many embraced the life transforming message of the gospel while others sneered and watched that train go right on by, choosing darkness and silence over light and life.

It is common knowledge that so often in nature when a poisonous plant is discovered, the antidote to that particular poison is growing very nearby.  How many people perish because they walk right past the antidote to their poison? 

There is a deep spiritual lesson here.  So often the Lord parallels in nature the spiritual truths He is trying to impart to us. 

 Darkness cannot overcome light but light must be chosen over darkness.

John 1:5 says, "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it."  Some versions translate the last part of that verse, "...the darkness cannot comprehend it."  Darkness cannot comprehend light.  Light makes no sense to darkness.  When embraced, however, light quickly chases darkness away.  

Darkness is not an old friend--it's a familiar enemy.   It offers no relief to our pain, no answers to our questions, puts no joy into our moments.  It's not welcome.  It's not necessary.

The light of the gospel dispels our darkness if we choose to embrace it.  Don't miss the train.

1 comment:

Beverly said...

I use to listen to that song too. I am so thankful that I chose to get on the "train" and still choose every day to stay on the train. And this reminds of another verse, that we shouldn't be surprised when we get that reaction > darkness does not understand light. Sometimes people don't get it, but we can still love and pass on a seed of light in their life, God will do the rest. Thanks for sharing.