2 Corinthians 4:6
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shined in our hearts…
The new Revised Version makes an important alteration in this verse, reading it thus: "Seeing it is God, that said, Light shall shine out of darkness, who shined in our hearts, to give the light [or, 'illumination'] of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."
I. LIGHT FROM GOD IN CREATION, (Genesis 1:3.) The following points may be illustrated.
1. All material light, as a warming, life-giving, beautifying agent, is from God.
2. All moral light, as the intimation of what is good and right in the relationships of men, is from God.
3. All revelational light, as the unfolding of the mysteries belonging to God and his claim and mercy, must come directly from himself. On spiritual things man can have no knowledge, save as God is pleased freely to give it; and, on these higher themes, all light must be tempered to the capacity of those on whom it shines.
II. LIGHT ON GOD IN CHRIST. Calvin says of this verse, "A notable place, whence we learn that God is not to be investigated in his unsearchable height, for he inhabits the light unapproachable (1 Timothy 6:16), but to be known as far as he reveals himself in Christ It is more useful for us to behold God as he appears in his only begotten Son than to investigate his secret essence." The face of Christ is said to reveal the glory of God, as the shining of Moses' face told of the splendour about the mount where he had been with God. But the glory of God is his redemption work. That showed
(4) holy purpose;
and all these we find in the face of Jesus Christ. Illustrate the power of expression, and the power of revealing thought and heart, that are in the human face, and then show how the face of the Lord Jesus reveals to us the "heart of God." Before Christ came God was a half known, if not an unknown, God. And the incomplete conceptions of him involved, too often, imperfect and unworthy conceptions. We now know the "true God and eternal life" in the face of Jesus, his manifested Son - or rather, his manifested Self. - R.T.
Parallel VersesKJV: For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.