14 And God said, Let there be light-bearers in the expanse of heaven to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years;
15 And let them be light-bearers in the expanse of heaven to give light on the earth; and it was so.
16 And God made the two great light-bearers, the greater light-bearer to rule the day and the lesser light-bearer to rule the night, and the stars.
17 And God set them in the expanse of heaven to give light on the earth
18 And to rule over the day and over the night and to separate the light from the darkness, and God saw that it was good.
23 And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon that they should shine in it, for the glory of God illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb.
25 And its gates shall by no means be shut by day, for there will be no night there.
In Genesis 1, it is recorded that on the first day of restoration God summoned the light. The first day was a day of light and that light may be called the first-day light. On the fourth day, God did something further regarding light. He made the light bearers—the sun, the moon, and the stars. The Bible does not tell us what kind of light was present on the first day, and there is no need for us to guess. The light of the first day was not very solid, strong, or definite. It was not given a specific designation; it was simply called “light.” However, the lights of the fourth day—the sun, the moon, and the stars—were definite and solid, strong and available. On the first day, God called for the light. On the fourth day He restored the sun, the moon, and the stars. This is very meaningful.
According to the revelation of the whole Bible, light is for life. Once again, we see that God’s creation is completely focused on life. All that God created and made was focused on life and was for life. Thus, there is the need for light. Light and life always go together.
On the first day, God commanded the light to come and light came. Then, God divided light from darkness. That division was a limitation to the darkness. The God of light seemed to say to the darkness, “Darkness, listen to Me. You have been prevailing for a time and you have filled the whole universe. Now, My light comes in to limit you. You can only prevail during the night. There is no room for you in the day. I limit you. I divide light from you. Never again can you occupy the whole universe. For at least half the time the universe must belong to Me.” Hallelujah!
God limited the darkness on the first day and, in the same principle, He limited the death waters on the third day. In Jeremiah 5:22 we read that God limited the death waters with sand, the smallest particles of rocks. God told the death waters, “This is your limitation. You cannot go beyond it.” Thus, the dry land appeared, making a separation between the land and the sea. After the first day of God’s restoring creation, it was half light and half darkness; after the third day, it was half land and half water. God is still working to eliminate the second half of the night and the second half of the death waters. In the new heavens and the new earth, there will be no more sea (Rev. 21:1); in the New Jerusalem, there will be no more night (Rev. 21:25b; 22:5). This means that both darkness and death will be completely eliminated.
To be like this we need the fourth-day lights. The first-day light only eliminates half of our darkness and half of our death. The fourth-day lights will bring us to another world where there is no night and no sea. According to the principle of life, the fourth-day lights are not for generating life; they are for the growth of life.
Many of you young people have received the first-day light, but I doubt very much whether you have entered into the fourth-day lights. The fourth-day lights are different from the first-day light. The first-day light was indefinite; the fourth-day lights are definite. Now we need to see what the sun, moon, and stars prefigure in typology.
The Sun – Christ and the Saints
The sun indicates Christ and also the saints who will shine as the sun in the kingdom. Malachi 4:2 says that Christ is the sun of righteousness. In His wings (that is, His shining) there is the healing of death. Without His shining, there is death; when His shining appears, death is healed. Luke 1:78-79 says that the birth of Christ was the real sunrise for humanity. Matthew 4:16 tells us that when Christ came to the sea of Galilee, He appeared as the great light. The people who sat in darkness saw a great light. Light shone upon those who were sitting in the region and shadow of death. That light was Jesus. Matthew 13:43a tells us that the overcoming saints will shine as the sun in the future kingdom. Although we may be a star today, it is too early for us to shine as the sun. For that, we must wait until the day of restoration. In the kingdom, many saints will shine as the sun. Today Christ is the sun; tomorrow the overcoming saints also will be the sun.
The Moon – The Church
The moon is the church. In Joseph’s dream, his father was likened to the sun, his mother to the moon, and his brothers to the stars (Gen. 37:9). The church is the bride, the wife of Christ. Therefore, the moon is a figure of the church (cf. S.S. 6:10).
During the church age it is night, and during the night we cannot get the sunlight, the light of Christ, directly. We need reflection. We need the moon to reflect the sunlight; we need the church to reflect the light of Christ. Without the church it is hard for us to see the light of Christ. When we come to the church and the church is not waning, we will surely receive light.
According to history, there was a long period during which the church was on the wane. While the moon is on the wane, that is the best time for the stars to shine. During the Dark Ages the stars shone. Martin Luther was a star. Before and after Luther, many other great stars were shining because the moon was on the wane. Two centuries ago, Zinzendorf and the so-called Moravian brothers were practicing the church life. Although their moon was not full, it was at least a crescent moon, reminding people that the church was there. A century later, the Brethren were raised up in England and the crescent was increased to nearly a full moon. Philadelphia, the church, was there. However, it didn’t last very long. There is a proverb which says that when the moon is full it begins to wane. Within a period of seventy years covering the last part of the nineteenth century and the first part of the twentieth, we can see some other stars such as Andrew Murray, Mrs. Penn-Lewis, and A. B. Simpson. During that time, there were stars, but no moon—there was no church life. The moon was on the wane and the stars shone.
If we go to the sun and ask for light during the nighttime, we are foolish. The sun will tell you, “Don’t come to me. Go to my reflection. Go to the church if you want the light which comes from me. The church reflects my light.” We must remember this is the night; the day has not come. We need the church. The Spirit speaks to the churches. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches” (Rev. 3:22). We must go to the churches and get the light of the sun indirectly.
Many dear Christians say, “I don’t care for the churches—I only care for Christ.” I can guarantee that whoever says this will not grow. Those who say such a thing may have the first-day light, but they lack the fourth-day lights. If you check with many saints, they will tell you that they did not grow until they came into the church. When we sincerely turn our heart to the church, we receive the proper light of Christ indirectly.
People who talk so much about Christ without contacting the proper church will find it difficult to obtain the real and practical light for the growth in life. For the growth of life we all need the moonlight, which is a principal part of the fourth-day lights. The more church life we have, the more Christ we gain, the more light we receive, and the more growth in life we experience.
The Stars – Christ and the Saints
The stars are Christ and the saints. Although Christ is the real sun, He does not appear as the sun during this age of night. He shines as a star, as the bright and morning star (Rev. 22:16b). Christ Himself is a star. All the overcoming saints are also stars. Second Peter 1:19 tells us to take heed to the sure Word until the morning star, which is Christ, arises within us. Revelation 1:20 not only tells us that the churches are the lampstands shining with the Spirit, but also that the angels, the leading ones or the messengers in the churches, are the shining stars. Daniel 12:3 says that those who turn many from the wrong way unto righteousness will shine as stars. Matthew 5:14 says that the believers today are the light of the world and Philippians 2:15 says, “among whom you shine as lights in the world.” All these verses show that the saints who are in the proper way and have the proper standing are stars.
Ultimately There Will Be No More Night
In the New Jerusalem, there will be no night (Rev. 21:23, 25b; 22:5). In that city there will be no need for the sun or the moon or any lamp because the Triune God will be the light. If we read Revelation carefully, we will see that outside the New Jerusalem, outside the city, there will still be day and night, but inside the city there will be no night. We will have our Triune God as the perfect and unique light shining over us. The days will be twenty-four hours long.
Today, however, we need the fourth-day lights. We especially need the moon and the stars to reflect the light of the sun. This is the way for us to grow. I hope that the Lord will speak to you concerning your growth, that your growth in life is with the fourth-day lights. The first-day light was good for generating life, good for your rebirth. But, for your growth in life you need the fourth-day lights.
Life Study of Genesis, Chapter 5, W. Lee
- What is the difference between the first-day lights and the fourth-day lights?
- What is the significance of the sun and how can we experience this in our Christian life?
- What is the significance of the moon and how can we experience this in our Christian life?
- What is the significance of the stars and how can we experience this in our Christian life?
- What is the main purpose and goal of the fourth-day lights?