January 30, 2008
If you have lived in the Hampton Roads area for any length of time, you have probably made a trip down to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. One of the places many people go, while there, is Cape Hatteras to see the light house. The Cape Hatteras lighthouse was built in 1870 to warn ships of the dangerous shallows that lay off the coast. Over the past 400 years, over 300 ships have sunk in this small area known as “The Graveyard of the Atlantic.”
In the beginning, whale oil was used to produce the light then, gas vapor for a while. With the introduction of electric lights this beacon was equipped with a 1000 watt bulb that produced the light of 800,000 candles. Its light could be seen for 20 miles on a dark night.
When first built the light house was manned 365 days a year. For 129 years, 47,000 nights, its light shone without fail due to the faithfulness of those who manned it. They were called the “Keepers of the Flame.” It was their charge to keep the light lit lest ships run aground and lives be lost.
Several years ago this light house was moved several thousand feet inland to keep it from falling into the encroaching sea. It is now part of a national park and serves as a museum. It is wonderful to see but its original purpose, saving lives, is no longer being fulfilled.
In the Scriptures, the Lord often refers to salvation, faith, righteousness, as light. On the other hand, death, hell, and unbelief are associated with darkness. In 2 Corinthians 4:6 we read, “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, has shined in our hearts, to the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” In I Peter 2:9 we are told that God “called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.” In Matthew 5 God tells us that we are the light of the world.
The bottom line is that God has given every Christian a purpose. Our purpose is to let the light of the gospel message of salvation shine forth in a world darkened by sin and unbelief. What we do, how we live, what we say should be a testimony to our Lord and Savior.
God did not put us on this earth simply to grow up, go to school, have a family and finally retire. We are here to save souls. We are the Lord’s “Keepers of the Flame.” If we are not mindful of that responsibility, we have lost our purpose. Jesus says that it is like putting a light under a bushel basket. What good is it?
Be a faithful keeper of the flame. Ask God to give you a strong faith, to let your light shine so that people will be drawn to the Savior, Jesus Christ, the Light of the world – to the glory and praise of God.