As we continue our Nativity Fast during this Advent season, we must be familiar with the Angel of Light. Light is good and we must walk in the light as Christ as in the light and the light shines into the darkness and darkness is overcome by the light. This is all true, but sometimes, we forget what darkness looks like. We forget what evil looks like. What is the face of evil?
Don’t get me wrong, there is darkness out there. When I consider some of the atrocities that fly through the broadcast air so quickly giving gruesome details, it is clear that we live in an evil that is dark and deprived. But should we walk into the path of darkness, the dark of darkness cannot be seen. We are instead blinded by the light. What does evil look like? It is a brilliant and beautiful light.
For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light
2 Corinthians 11:13-14
We have believed that lies that evil is dark and grotesque, but we must not be ignorant that evil shines brightly at first and then dissipates into the darkness. If we are looking to avoid evil, but forget its brilliance, we will be fooled and find our self in a dark place before we know it. We will follow the light like a moth to a bug zapper. Do not be misled by the principalities of darkness for they shine brightly.
Jesus is the true light. The Angel of Light attempts to disguise himself as light. I dare not say that the Angel of Light imitates Christ, nor does He reflect the light of Christ. No, it is a disguise and there is nothing of Christ that resembles the light of darkness. It is a false light. It seems right and good. It feels positive and peaceful. It appears unifying and beneficial, but it is a masquerade. The eyes of the devil, the windows into his soul are full of malice and destruction, but the mask he holds before his face promises good things.
Unmasking the light of evil can only be done by comparison. In the darkness the moon shines brightly, but should we be able to place it next to the sun, it would prove dark and dim. We are fooled by the Angel of Light when we allow it to remain before us without comparison to the Light of Christ, which is the Truth.
During Christmas, the Angel of Light directs us to unite with family and friends for social gatherings, giving of gifts, and sharing meals together. This is good, right? I see nothing wrong with this. But we were taught be Christ that if the time we spend with our family cause us to neglect Him, the light we are in is a mask in the hand of the devil hiding his true identity. It is good to be generous and to give good gifts. After all, our Lord refers to Himself as the good father who wants to give good gifts to His children. But should generosity be elevated above the God who calls us to be generous, the light we see is but a shade of gray. When giving to our loved ones keeps us from giving to the One who loved us first; when our celebrations neglect why we celebrate; when we remember everyone on our list but forget the One who gave us life, we have been blinded by the darkness.
The comparison of lights can only be done within our spirit. The light of darkness is filled with good things, but they must be placed next to the Light of Christ in order for them to be placed in their proper place. When we love Christ first, then love our families, we step out of from the counterfeit into the true Light. But this comparison is not seen in the places I go. It is not seen in the things I do. It is found in the priorities I keep. We must love our families and spend time with them. If not, we are not walking in the True Light. But Christ must be above all. We must be generous with our time, our money, the gifts God has given to us, but we must give to Christ first. Let us joyfully eat big dinners. Let us carefully wrap gifts and rabidly unwrap them. Let us shop til we drop and stay up late watching The Grinch who Stole Christmas. But through it all, let Christ reign in our thoughts. Think of the Gift given by God, born in a manger, attended by Shepherds, and announced by Angels. Let the True Light shine in you and through you and let the Angel of Light be eclipsed by the brilliance of our God.
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