16/1/2018 - Pastor Young
When we see the night illuminated by moonlight, our initial thought isn't usually, "the moon is reflecting the sun so well." But if we remember some basic science lessons from our younger years, we know this is exactly what's happening. The moon's light is just a reflection of the light from the sun (and only about 12% of the sun's light on average, at that).
Despite this knowledge, it can be a challenge to recall this when we're out for a walk, or just looking up at the night sky. It almost becomes a bit of trivia that we can recall if we're forced to think about it, which otherwise just sits in a dusty corner of our memory.
This can also happen when we read the Bible. Although we are told that everything points to our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, we can often forget to look for the connections.
On Sunday, as Pastor Steve took us through Esther 4-5, were you able to see the sun that the moon was pointing toward?
At face value, God's people needed someone (an intercessor) to go before the king and plead their cause—in this case, Queen Esther. Without her, the people are helpless, doomed to perish. Even so, Esther had to be convinced by Mordecai to go before the king: "Don't think that you will escape the fate of all the Jews because you are in the king's palace. If you keep silent at this time, liberation and deliverance will come to the Jewish people from another place, but you and your father's house will be destroyed." It is only at this point that she embraces the grim possibility of her death on behalf of her people, simultaneously acknowledging the reality that this may change nothing for them.
The moonlight of Esther's intercession points to Jesus as the source. Again, God's people needed an intercessor, and here Jesus—the King of Kings—represents us and pleads our cause before God the Father. Without Him, we and all of God's people are helpless, and doomed to perish. Jesus needed no convincing to intercede on our behalf, going willingly and laying down His life of His own accord (John 10:14-18). In His case, however, there was the certainty of death rather than the possibility of it, and the certainty of a resolution for us rather than inconclusive ambiguity.
Perhaps the greatest hope we can hold in all of this is the fact that whereas an imperfect human intercessor can only plead on our behalf until the end of his or her life, we have a great high priest who continues until the end of time. Hebrews 7:25 tells us, "Therefore, He is always able to save those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to intercede for them." Although the moon goes through phases, and we can only observe it under the right conditions, we can rest assured knowing that Jesus is always with us (Matthew 28:20b). It is a lesson we have seen time and time again throughout the book of Esther, as the writer points toward certain "coincidences" that have guided God's people providentially.
May we, by the light of the moon, look to the source of the light in all that we observe and all that we read!
May the Lord make His face shine on you,