Thursday, May 31, 2012

Sunrise, Sunset

Are you a sunrise person or a sunset person? I’ve always been an early riser, so I’ve enjoyed more sunrises than sunsets in my lifetime. I believed a sunrise was more beautiful, but I’m beginning to think that are each beautiful in their own way. For their own purpose.

Our sunrises in Colorado begin in the east, but as the sun rises, it transforms the mountains to the west. The sunrise is as beautiful to the west as it is to the east.

Our sunsets in Colorado have the mountains as their backdrop. I have seen some of the most beautiful sunsets here.

I love that God has given us this type of beauty. Beauty for us to enjoy. Let me share a little of the references in the Bible and what God says about sunrises and sunsets.

In the Old Testament, there are many references to the sunrise. Most of them deal with something facing toward the sunrise. A building, an entrance, where the Israelites were to camp, or the direction they headed on a journey.

These accounts can be found in Exodus 27:13; 38:13; Numbers 2:3; 3:38; 21:11; 34:15; Joshua 1:15; and Joshua 19:12.

Also in the Old Testament, David shared that he was a light at sunrise in his world because he followed and trusted God. (2 Samuel 23:3-4)

In the New Testament, we see the scene at Jesus’ resurrection at sunrise in Mark 16:2-3. “Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, ‘Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?’”

It seems appropriate that Jesus appeared just after sunrise. Especially since He is described as the “Bright Morning Star” (Revelation 22:16).

In the Old Testament there are references to the sunset. If a cloak was used as a pledge, it was to be returned by sunset. These laws can be found in Exodus 22:6; Deuteronomy 23:11; and Deuteronomy 24:13.

During a battle with the Amalekites, Moses’ arms were held up until sunset so the Israelites would obtain victory (Exodus 17:12).

There are other references in the Old Testament that are too gruesome to mention at this time of day, but you can look them up if you’d like.

Mark 13:2 and Luke 4:40 tell us how Jesus was greeted with sick people at sunset. “At sunset, the people brought to Jesus all who had various kinds of sickness, and laying his hands on each one, he healed them.” (Luke 4:40)

I have seen some beautiful sunrises here in Colorado. But I have equally seen some beautiful sunsets. I think these two events, that just happen to occur daily, are a reminder for us to think about our God and how our lives can be changed through Him.

At sunrise we can seek God and ask for His guidance throughout our day. We can know that it is a new day and that we have the opportunity for a “do over.” I guess that is why one of my favorite Bible verses is Lamentations 3:22-23. “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.”

At sunset we can once again approach God with our daily victories, troubles, struggles, temptations and sins. We can seek His grace and forgiveness and allow Him to cover us with His wings. Psalm 141:2 tells us, “May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.” The evening sacrifice is our lives, lived with God’s power and strength throughout the day.

Through my Christian walk, I can enjoy both sunrise and sunset as seen through Scripture. In Colorado, I can also enjoy both sunrise and sunset. I guess it’s not for me to debate any longer. I love them both!

Grace and peace be yours in abundance,


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