The word for today is 'LAMP'.
It is a word that's synonymous to light. Before the days of electricity, rooms were illuminated by lamps. There were no florescent lights, incandescent, LED or halogen bulbs, just a simple vessel that 'housed' a wick fixed to a reservoir. However, when filled with oil and lit, the lamp had an immediate impact on its surroundings. The light of the lamp caused the darkness to retreat.
The Psalmist compared the Word of God to a lamp.
"Your word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path." Psalm 119:105
Without a supply of oil the lamp is restricted to little more than decoration; something to look at. Therefore, the oil is essential to the effectiveness of the lamp. In scripture, the oil that fuels the lamp is a type or symbol for the Holy Spirit. It is worth noting that the word lamp is often wrongly translated candle. Likewise, the lampstand is often misrepresented as a candlestick.
Candles are fueled by a different source than a lamp is and therefore the use of the word candle or candlestick misrepresents the truth. Both the candle and the lamp produce light but only one is fueled by 'oil'. Because God's word is fueled by the Holy Spirit then all who look into the word illumined by the Spirit live in the light that the lamp produces. That person realizes the benefit of seeing their way forward without fear of stumbling and falling.
A lamp without oil does not fulfill its potential nor it's designed purpose. So it is with the word of God when not fueled by the Holy Spirit. The Word, though still inspired becomes largely ineffective in fulfilling the purpose for which it was designed.
I walked early this morning with a small light in my hand. Partly, for being able to see in the darkness of the early morning hours and partly to be seen so as not to be hurt by the traffic that hurried by; often in the opposite direction.
When God's Spirit is present and active in our lives, God's word helps us to see our way forward in the darkness of what surrounds us in this world. His Spirit and His Word also provides light for others to see, as well. His light permeates the darkness, provides a clear path to walk by and gives those who shine it the protection necessary from those who may be not yet fully 'awake' as they go about their daily routine in this world.
I thought about this today as I was walking and praying--The light of the lamp is light no matter where it is present. However, it's not as effective in a room where light is already abundant. Meaning this; when those who gather for worship are assembled, the light is present but the purpose of the light of the lamp is not as effective as its design was intended.
In other words, if I light a lamp on Sunday morning when the lights are on in the room, you will still be able to see the light but its designed purpose is not fully realized nor appreciated. However, when the lights are out the lamp fulfills the design it was created for.
It's good to gather and worship, in fact we are commanded by God to do that. (Heb. 10:25) It's better and more effective for you and I to shine the light of the lamp when we're away from the church house at work in the world. We shouldn't reserve the light of the lamp to corporate worship only. I urge you to permit the light of the lamp to fulfill its design as you worship through service to others!
God provides both the lamp and the fuel we need daily to walk in the light as He is in the light. The Word of God says in 1 John 1:7--"But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin."
God's word, inspired by His Spirit produces light to live by as well as a life to love and look forward to! So as you're walking daily surrounded by the darkness of this world, don't forget the lamp that lights your way. Be 'being' filled with His Spirit (Eph. 5:18) and you'll discover that the lamp will best fulfill the designed purpose, both for you and for others around you.
"The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?" Psalm 27:1
Live in the light of His life; life that's produced by His lamp!
And you and I will 'see' faith conquer fear, daily!
May God bless His continuing work of grace in you and through you this week!
1 Corinthians 15:58