A Light in the Dark

by / 0 Comments / 104 View / August 18, 2016

Psalm 119.105 states, “Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” This verse was made even more popular when a contemporary Christian music song was written with these words in the chorus in the 1980’s. This phrase is often used in such a way as to treat Scripture as some sort of mystic tarot card of text that will somehow give insight into the future long term. But this isn’t what this verse means at all.
The Hebrew term translated at ‘lamp’ in this passage is just that, a lamp. But it isn’t a 160 watt or even a small LED powered lamp that we might think to today. The Hebrew term refers to a small hand held oil lamp that was used at night to light the next step in front of your feet as you walked or moved. It literally gives enough light to show the next step. But the next step isn’t generally what we are looking for when we treat God’s Word as some magic tool of future prognostications.
So what is the next step God wants you to take? That is what His Word is for. It isn’t about looking to see if your wildest dreams of retirement, home ownership, dream car, perfect spouse, or winning lottery numbers come true. God’s Word is about giving you the vision to see what you need to do next. Beyond that step? Well…
A Light In the Dark
Beyond that one step, we really all know what lies ahead; darkness. But if we trust that God is able to get us to the next step, then He is faithful to get us to the next step. And the next step. And the next step.
One of my favourite Hebrew words is, ‘dayenu’. It means, ‘it would have been enough for us. It is used commonly during the Haggadah of the Jewish Passover to show step by step how God saved His people by bringing them out of Egypt and into the Promised Land. A process that took over 40 years (some could argue over 440 years). But God led His people, showing them the way, step by step. Indeed then, and indeed now, God’s Word is a lamp unto your feet, showing you the next step… and the next step… and the next step…