The theme of this year's Easter Sunrise service on Mount Rubidoux is "From Darkness to Light." That is such a rich theme in the Scriptures. Throughout the Bible darkness is a symbol of sin and evil while God is always depicted as light. In John 1 Jesus is described as the light that has come into the world to shine in the darkness. In John 8:12 Jesus says, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
During Jesus' crucifixion, at about noon, we're told that darkness came over the whole land. It was an evil day, the Son of God was dying for the sins of the world. But three days latter, on Easter Sunday, at sunrise, at the first light, Jesus rose from the dead. The world went from darkness to light.
For Jesus' followers, the time after his death was a dark time. They'd lost their Lord, their friend and their leader. They hid behind locked doors in the Upper Room grieving. Early Sunday morning Mary Magdalene and some of the other women went to the tomb to anoint Jesus body, a ritual for an honorable burial. But when they came around the corner to the tomb they saw the guards had run away, the stone had been rolled away, and Jesus is alive. The darkness had turned to light.
The disciples heard the report of the women but didn't know what to make of it. They couldn't believe he had risen. But suddenly in their midst there was another man. He held out his hands and they saw the nail marks and he said, "Peace be with you." They knew Jesus is alive. The darkness had turned into light.
But one of the disciples, Thomas, was not with the others when Jesus visited them. He refused to believe Jesus had risen. After all, how many dead people do you know who rose from the grave three days after their death? He would not believe unless he touched the scars left from the crucifixion in Jesus' hands and side. The next Sunday, the disciples and Thomas were still behind locked doors in the Upper Room and again, suddenly, another man was in their midst. He invited Thomas to touch the wounds in his hands and side. Jesus is alive. Thomas response, "My Lord and my God!"
There may be darkness in your life due to sin, discouragement, doubt, fear of death or judgment. Put your faith in Jesus and believe that he is alive. The darkness will turn to light when you invite Jesus into your life and know that he is your God. He'll forgive your sins and save you and give you life that lasts forever. This Easter let your life move from darkness to light.