As Christmas closes in the expectation and excitement builds. We count down the days, minutes, seconds. The church’s countdown is called Advent. During Advent we wait in anticipation of Jesus coming. Excitement builds because with the coming of Jesus we expect light to shine.
The people walking in darkness have seen a great light – on those walking in a land of deep darkness a light has shined. ~ Isaiah 9:2
There is deep darkness in the world today and yet we hope for light. We believe that even a little light can make a big difference in a dark place. Not light from a good retail holiday or from receiving the right gift or from enjoying seasonal programs or from celebrating family together but the light of Jesus shining into the darkness.
He has shown you what is good and what the Lord requires of you, but to act justly, and to love mercy and to walk humbly with our God. ~ Micah 6:8.
Acting justly, loving mercy and walking humbly shines light. Until Jesus comes, the light of Jesus shines through us. As we wait for Jesus to come, we shine light. Justice requires action. Mercy reflects an attitude. Both come from walking humbly with God. Walking humbly leads to right attitudes which leads to right action. The Bible never separates right belief from right actions.
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says… What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds?… Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? ~ James 1
The Bible marries love of neighbor with with specific actions taken. Right attitude. Right action. Love your neighbor. Walk humbly. Love mercy. Act Justly.
The Bible is full of this stuff. The book of Job calls this wearing justice or wearing righteousness. Right attitude and right actions are so much a part of us it is what we wear. We get dressed for the day acting justly, loving mercy and walking humbly – without proper attitudes and actions we are naked.
I put on righteousness as my clothing; justice was my robe and my turban. ~ Job 29:14
Job then talks about rescuing the needy. Being eyes for the blind, feet for the lame, father for the fatherless, and friend to the outsider.
Right attitude. Right action. Walk humbly. Love mercy. Act justly. Shine light. Job describes the outcome of light shining as “breaking the fangs of the wicked.” Our love demonstrated in actions results in grabbing the needy from the mouth of evil. We kick injustice in the teeth. And light shines in the darkness.
The people walking in a land of deep darkness have light. Now a little light and when Jesus comes a light so bright that we no longer need the sun.