The so-called Great American Total Solar Eclipse will darken the skies across the continent on August 21st. This is the first time in 99 years a solar eclipse has covered the continent of America. Here in Western Kentucky we are blessed to be in the “path of totality” that will travel across the U.S. A solar eclipse happens when the moon creates a shadow upon the earth. Literally, the moon blocks the rays of the sun and covers it up. Total eclipse conditions only lasts for a couple of minutes.¹
This will create an unforgettable and unique celestial event. But contrary to what some have said, there is no Biblical evidence to support any prophetic significance to the solar eclipse. The eclipse doesn’t mean Jesus is any nearer returning than he was in 1918 when a total solar eclipse travelled the length of our continent and WW1 was raging on. No one knows when Jesus will return, and thus we should always be ready for his return (Mat. 24:36).
The face of Christ is said to shine like the sun (Rev. 1:16). He is the “Light of the world” (John 9:5). We are to reflect his light to the world as Christians. Our work is often compared to the typical role of the moon. The moon doesn’t produce light, it only reflects the light of the sun upon the world. But on Monday, the moon will actually block the sun’s light. How do we do the same with our lives? How do we eclipse the light of Jesus with our actions?
- We eclipse the light of Christ when we focus on our own glory. There are thousands of competing stars in the sky. But none shine upon earth with the splendor of our sun. We don’t need to be a competing star in this world! The disciples argued about who was the greatest, and Jesus rebuked them (Mat. 18:1-4). Arrogant and haughty Christians that want glory and recognition for their good deeds and accomplishments block the light of Christ. Jesus said we are to do good deeds so that people can give glory to our Father in heaven; not to ourselves (Mat. 5:16).
- We eclipse the light of Christ when we inaccurately represent Jesus to the world. All Christians are going to struggle in measuring up to the stature of Christ (Eph. 4:13). But when we play the role of a hypocrite to the world we block Christ being seen in us. A hypocrite is simply an actor who pretends to look like a Christian outwardly and in certain groups, but truly is far from God. Jesus strongly rebuked the Pharisees for their hypocrisy (Mat. 23). The world needs to see sincere believers, rather than hypocrites who claim to follow Jesus, yet actually live like the world.
- We eclipse the light of Christ when we bring darkness into the world. Christians are to be “children of light” (Eph. 5:8). We are commanded not to walk in darkness (1 John 1:5-6). When Christians spread hatred, bigotry, greed, lies, and lust into the world we block the light of Jesus. We join Satan’s team, rather than being a light in a twisted world. When we give into evil thoughts, malicious actions, bitter words, and jealous feelings we yield to darkness. We must “cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light” (Rom. 13:12).
The eclipse this coming Monday is a rare event. But shamefully, it is not a rare event for Christians to block the light of Christ. We block his light because of our arrogance, hypocrisy, and sin. Let’s repent and let the light of Christ shine through in our hearts and lives.