Ephesians 1-6: A Return of the Dark Ages... or Enlightenment?

I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers, that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him,

having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you,

what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might

Ephesians 1:16-19, ESV


There was a period of history from the fall of the Roman Empire to about A.D. 1,000 that historians have referred to as the Dark Ages. Some historians extend this Dark Ages timeline to the 14th century.


The Dark Ages was an era of "backwardation" when men seeking power thought they could control (and sometimes repress) all knowledge, especially that of the knowledge of the Word of God. The church of Christ was largely transformed into a church of men who lusted after power and money. This control and suppression of knowledge filtered its way through all of society until mankind literally went backwards in everything including science, art, medicine, and especially religion. It is interesting how history repeats itself, isn't it?. 


For nearly everyone living during this era, the Dark Ages was a brutal existence. For a small percentage of the world's population, a remnant of sorts, the Dark Ages were actually a period of enlightenment. What was the difference between the majority who regressed and the minority who went forward?


It was the Word of God! History shows that while it was not until the Bible was translated into the common languages of English and German during the time of John Wycliffe, William Tyndale, and Martin Luther from circa 1,400 - 1,500, that there was still copies of the Word of God available to common men in their own languages. For these people, the Dark Ages were not dark at all, for they had the Word of God to enlighten them.


And those of us living in the 21st century can have the same thing. For though we clearly live in a time when greedy men are attempting to suppress and control all knowledge, we have the Word of God to enlighten us. And while it very well may be that the majority of the world is regressing to a modern day, Dark Ages, those who have Christ do not have to participate.


When Paul wrote to the church of God at Ephesus some 2,000 years age, he prayed that they would have a spirit of wisdom, a revelation of knowledge, and that their eyes would be enlightened that they might know the hope that they had in Christ. This is the prayer that we need today. We already have God's revelation of knowledge complete within the Bible.


The only question for modern men is whether or not we will allow our hearts to be enlightened with this Holy Word of God that we may receive it with a spirit of wisdom that will give us hope in a world that seems to be growing darker and darker.


The readings for this week are from chapters 1-6 of Ephesians. They provide enlightenment for those who wish to see!