The Domain of Darkness
There is an analogy often used in reference to salvation. I’ve heard it many times; it seems to be a Bible Belt favorite. It goes like this:
Imagine yourself stranded in the ocean with no land in sight. You’ve been struggling to stay afloat, and just before you give in, a boat comes. The captain throws you a life vest; the life vest is Jesus. Without him, you couldn’t be brought aboard the boat.
But I’m here to tell you this is not nearly the picture that the Word creates for us. A picture is painted that is much more dramatic, much more true, and much more difficult to embrace.
Imagine yourself, not struggling to stay afloat, but already at the bottom of the dark ocean because you couldn’t swim. You are not alive, but encompassed by the darkness and depth of the ocean. Death surrounds you. You are dead, your body is decaying, and fish have taken it upon themselves to feed on your flesh. There is no life vest that can save you. In you, you have no breath. In you there is no life. Death has taken you as one of its own. There is no hope.
But hope is given.
No life vest comes, but someone does. His name is Jesus. He pulls your broken, lifeless body from the depths of the ocean. He breaths into you and heals you. His breath gives you life again. You are no longer dead, but rescued from the death, rescued from the darkness, and brought up to the light.
You were not saved from death; you were dead. Some of us still are.
Let me tell you how sweet life is when death has been defeated. For Jesus defeated death on the cross, but he defeats death in my life every day. When death is defeated, life abounds.
The great fisherman does not just catch in fish. He reaches into the water, grabs its skeleton, and breaths life into it.
This is a picture of what salvation truly is.
Paul writes this in Romans 3:12,13 concerning humans before knowing Christ personally: “…throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive.”
Death is our only possession before trusting Christ.
Like Jesus says to the girl swallowed by death in Mark: “Talitha Cumi”, that is, “Little girl, I say to you, Arise.” The little girl, though very real, also represents every one of us as humans. Jesus beckons to us, even whispers to us… “Talitha Cumi”. He is looking at you and saying, “Arise.” Arise from death, from the depth of the ocean, from the domain of darkness that you are enveloped in.
Through his forgiving of our sins, we are redeemed. We are given life.
“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and he has transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
Man has only two choices: to remain a fool in the domain of darkness, or become wise in the Light.