Black Hole Christianity
I have always been fascinated by the mysteries of space. From the time when I was a little boy, I remember being in awe at the vastness and power of the universe. I recall actually reading a book on the “Black Holes of the Universe” when I was a pre-teen. Those of you who know me are laughing right about now. Nerding out Sheldon style. I didn’t understand much of the science that I was reading but the concepts I could grasp mesmerized my young mind.
I was lying in bed yesterday and I couldn’t sleep. Often when this happens I begin to talk to the Lord. As I began to pray silently I was interrupted by a random thought…“For some Christians, “faith” is likened to a black hole in space.” I told you it was random…let me explain. It is theorized that a Black Hole is a massive collapsed star whose gravitational pull is so strong that not even light can escape it. Light travels at 186,000 miles per second. That is a mind-blowing power that only God Himself could conceive…but back to my random thought, how can our relationship to the Creator be like a Black Hole? Simply put, the “light” is poured in but it never “escapes”.
Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” (John 8:12 NASB)
Light dispels darkness. This is not a complex scientific concept but certainly a profound spiritual one. Spiritual darkness is vanquished by the Light of the World….deception, lies, isolation, pain, hopelessness…all exist on a continuum of spiritual darkness and are violently dispelled by the unmitigated power of Jesus Christ; truth, unconditional love, peace, hope, acceptance are all discovered in the Light of His loving presence. Jesus did this when He descended into this sin sick world, absorbed the darkness of sin, nailed it to the cross and destroyed its power to veil the hearts of those who believe. But He didn’t stop there….too many are still under the veil of darkness.
“You are the light of the world.” (Matthew 5:14 NASB)
Jesus dispelled the darkness and dispersed His light into the hearts of all who reach out to Him in faith and trust. He ascended into Heaven to reign at the right hand of the Father and He sent His Holy Spirit to earth to fill the hearts of His people with the Light of His presence. Why?
“A city built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead, they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:15-16 NASB)
A Black Hole has what is referred to as an “Event Horizon”. The Event Horizon is the “point of no return” that surrounds the Black Hole. Once it is crossed, nothing can escape the gravitational pull of the darkness, not even light. The life of a true Christ follower is meant to be lived as far from the “event horizon” of sin and selfishness as possible…
Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. (Ephesians 5:11 NIV)
The light of Christ, in the believer, is intended to expose and dispel anything hidden in darkness, both in our individual hearts and in the world around us. If our orientation is selfish, we have succumbed to the pull of darkness and the light of the gospel message is hidden and influence is lost. When the narrative in the church and the focus of the gospel is on personal “blessings” and comfort, the light of Christ is diluted and diffused. Those who are in darkness need to see the light of Christ in the lives of God’s people. This requires faith that is demonstrable through works of love and selflessness. An “others” orientation and mindset.
“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant…” (Phil.2:3-7a NASB)
If the perpetual, 24/7 news cycle provides any service to us, it is the constant reminder that this world is seriously broken. No political movement, military might, financial blessing, positive confession is going to repair the devastation in a world overcome by darkness. The light of the risen Christ who lives in the hearts of all who have bent their knees in surrender to His love, is the only answer to eradicate the darkness.
“The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3:8b NASB)
Jesus came to this world to destroy the power of the enemy. He has done this. He is now seated at the right hand of the Father in Heaven, and at the Father’s command, will one day return to this earth to establish His earthly reign. In the interim, He has sent His Spirit to dwell within each believer so that His Kingdom light would pervade the darkness in every corner of this planet. But, this will not, this cannot happen unless we are willing to go, to speak, to serve, to give, to live a life far away from the event horizon…close to His presence, with an outward orientation and mindset.
Jesus did not come to be served. We His followers are not here to be served. We are not here to beg or seek to manipulate the Lord into giving us all our hearts desire. We are here to live for His purposes…wherever He might take us…wherever He commands. And it won’t begin by traveling to the ends of the earth but with a prayer and decision to live for Him right now…in word, in thought, in attitude and action…and to dispel the darkness through prayer, dedication to the mission to be the light that illuminates the darkness.
Prayer this prayer with me today, “Lord Jesus…show me what you want me to see, let me hear what you want me to hear, empower me to do what you want me to do and say what you want me to say, that your light and love would illuminate me and those who need to see your love today…in Jesus Name. Amen.”