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Series THE GREAT CONTROVERSY with Pastor Mark Finley  |
Lesson 3.Light Shines in the Darkness  |
Light in Darkness: Vigilance and Truth in a Changing World |

This lesson illuminates the eternal struggle between truth and deception, faith and doubt. We will delve into the importance of vigilance in faith and the need to defend God’s truth against the challenges of the modern world. Let’s dive deeper into the scriptures together and discover the significance of light in our darkness.
Memory Text: John 12:35 – “Then Jesus said to them, ‘A little while longer the light is with you. Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going.”
Content:
3.1 Compromise: Satan’s Subtle Strategy

Recognizing Truth: Jesus and Satan’s Strategies in Light of Scripture
The Bible verses John 14:6 and 8:44 depict a profound contrast between the character of Jesus and that of Satan. While Jesus embodies truth and is recognized as the author of truth, Satan is the father of lies and distorts the truth to deceive people. This contrast underscores the necessity of recognizing God’s truth and safeguarding against Satan’s deceptions. Jesus himself emphasized the importance of the Holy Scriptures by responding to Satan’s attacks with God’s word, as seen in the example of Luke 4:1-13. It’s crucial to understand the truth of the Bible and not be swayed by distortions or false interpretations, as evidenced throughout history by the suppression of the Bible by certain institutions.
3.2 Savage Wolves
Paul’s Urgent Admonition: Vigilance Against Internal and External Threats to the Church
Paul’s warning to the church leaders of Ephesus in Acts 20:27-32 is a urgent call to vigilance. He speaks of “ravenous wolves” threatening the church and warns that false teachers will arise even from within. These prophecies highlight the constant danger of deviations and seductions within the church. In 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12, Paul emphasizes that the “mystery of lawlessness” is already at work, indicating a gradual departure from divine truth. It serves as a reminder for the church to remain vigilant and adhere to the pure doctrine of God’s word, resisting the currents of the time and the temptations of compromising with the truth.
3.3 Safeguarded by the Word
The Unwavering Foundation: Scripture as a Shield Against Deceptions
God’s word serves not only as a light for our paths but also as a shield against the deceptions of evil. It is the foundation of our faith and guides us through life’s complexities. Jesus and Paul emphasize the immense significance of the Holy Scriptures in protecting against errors and deviations from true faith. In a time when many question the authority of the Bible, it’s crucial to uphold its infallibility and see it as divine revelation. Only then can we grasp the fullness of salvation and guard against the tricks and pitfalls of the devil.
3.4 Human Reasoning Apart From Scripture
Divine Orientation in a Confusing World
The human mind is a valuable gift, but without divine guidance through the Holy Spirit and the wisdom of the Holy Scriptures, it can easily go astray. Satan’s deception is to make us believe that our intellect alone is sufficient to discern God’s will. Like a lost hiker in the woods, we need reliable orientation – the Bible – to safely find our way. Only in the light of divine truth can we distinguish between good and evil and discern genuine truth from deception. Therefore, recognizing God’s word as our ultimate source of truth and morality is essential.
3.5 Battle for the Mind
In the Light of the Gospel Against the Darkness of Doubt
The spiritual battle described by Paul in 2 Corinthians 4:3-6 illustrates Satan’s strategy to obscure people’s clear view of the Gospel. He uses distractions, temptations, and worldly concerns to cloud people’s perception and deter them from studying God’s word. The light of the Gospel, embodied by Jesus Christ, is the key to enlightenment and overcoming this spiritual darkness. By focusing on Christ and allowing his love and truth to guide us, we can see through Satan’s deceptions and walk in the light of the Gospel. It’s our responsibility to preserve and pass on this light in the darkness.
3.6 Summary
Light in the Eternal Struggle
The lesson “Light Shines in Darkness” emphasizes the eternal struggle between good and evil, with light symbolizing truth, love, and God’s work. Despite Satan’s attempts to blind people with deception and distractions, the true light is revealed through the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Christ is at the center of this light, offering hope and salvation amidst the world’s darkness. Believers are called to turn to this light, proclaim it, and boldly stand for the truth to overcome darkness.
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