2 Peter 1:19-21
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that you take heed, as to a light that shines in a dark place…
(Luke 1:78, 79; 2 Peter 1:19): — Christ has two incarnations — the one outside of man, the other inside; two births — the one in the manger, the other in the soul.
I. His OBJECTIVE birth or rising. "The day-spring from on high," etc. This day-star arose in Bethlehem. First, the origin of this rising. "Through the. tender mercy of our God." God's sovereign, compassionate, boundless love was the cause. Secondly, the purpose of this rising. "To give light to them that sit in darkness." This was the condition of the world — in moral night, ignorant, polluted, miserable.
II. His SUBJECTIVE birth or rising. "The day-star arise in your hearts." Christ is in His disciples
(1) as the dominant object of affection,
(2) as the dominant theme of thought,
(3) as the dominant motive of action.
III. His objective and subjective rising COMPARED. Both agree in this. They are from the "tender mercy of our God." But the following are points of difference: First, the objective rising exists independently of the subjective; but not the subjective without the objective. In other words, unless Christ had been born in the manger He would never have been born by faith in the human soul. Secondly, the objective rising may become a curse, the subjective never. The man who does not receive Christ into the heart, but continues to reject Him, is injured immensely by the fact of His outward revelation. Thirdly, the objective rising is independent of human choice or effort, but not the subjective. Fourthly, the objective rising is not a matter of consciousness; the subjective is. That Christ came into the world can only be proved by logic and dealing with known facts; consciousness, the strongest and ultimate proof, can yield no testimony to the fact. But the subjective rising is a matter of consciousness. Conclusion: Learn — first, what personal Christianity is; secondly, what the duty of the preacher is. Try to get Christ, and not creeds, into human souls.
Parallel VersesKJV: We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: