Dark and Light
A concept that reaches out to me from Genesis chapter 1 is that of darkness and light.
Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day," and the darkness he called "night." And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day. Genesis 1:2-5
There is a song that Jim Morrison sang that contains the following line, “the day destroys the night, the night divides the day,” and I think this truth was stated first here in Genesis.
First of all, what did God create? He created the light; darkness was already there. without light we wouldn’t be able to understand what darkness is; absence of light. And without darkness would we recognize light?
Jesus is the light of the world, “In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. John 1:4-5. Jesus is the only source of light, whether it was during the creation or today, everything else brings darkness. We, as followers of Christ, are supposed to shine as well, “"You are the light of the world. A city 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 men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:14-16.
We are supposed to let our little lights shine, but we sometimes get caught in the darkness. Even as I write these words I create a shadow of darkness on this page. That seems to be what I do in this world; I try to be a light, to destroy darkness. But, instead, I myself get in the way of the light, casting shadows where there would be none if I wasn’t there.
So God created light and separated darkness from light, and He said that the light was good. Does this mean that the darkness was bad? I don’t know. But, if God didn’t create darkness, He at the very least allowed it to remain, although separate from the light. And, the darkness defines the light. There is no day and night at the same time in the same place, and there is no dark and light at the same time in the same place. There is one or the other and by their contrasts we can define each of the terms.