Who has delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:…
I. INVOLVES OUR ENFRANCHISEMENT FROM A STATE OF DARK CAPTIVITY.
1. The unrenewed are in a realm of moral darkness.
(1) Darkness denotes ignorance — moral blindness about the great mysteries of being, of sin and suffering, the deep significance of life. It is possible to know much about religion, to hold religious ideas at second hand; yet be totally in the dark as to the experience of these ideas.
(2) Darkness denotes danger and misery.
2. In this realm the unrenewed are held in captivity.
3. From this realm God graciously liberates. "Who hath delivered us."(1) For the slaves of sin there is no help but in God. It is the nature of sin to incapacitate its victim for self-enfranchisement. He is unwilling to be free.
(2) The word "deliver" means to snatch, or rescue from danger, even though the person seized may at first be unwilling to escape, as Lot from Sodom. God does not force the human will.
(3) Our enfranchisement may be painful.
II. PLACES US IN A CONDITION OF HIGHEST MORAL FREEDOM AND PRIVILEGE.
1. We are transferred to a kingdom. "Hath translated us into the kingdom." Power detains captives; a kingdom fosters willing citizens. Tyranny has no law but the will of a despot; a kingdom implies good government, based on law. The kingdom of God has an earthly and heavenly aspect, both of which are governed by one and the same sceptre. It resembles a city divided by a river, but both parts controlled by the same municipal authority, and having one common franchise. There is no middle state between the power of darkness and the kingdom of grace: all who breathe are either in the one or the other.
2. We are placed under the rule of a beneficent and glorious King. "The Son of His love." The manifestation of Christ is the manifestation of Divine love (1 John 4:9). The kingdom into which believers are translated is founded on love: its entire government is carried on by love. The acts of suffering and death, by which Christ won his kingly dignity, were revelations of love. Under such a monarch we are sure of protection, guidance, support, and final victory.
III. IS EFFECTED BY "REDEMPTION."
1. The means. "Through His blood."
2. The effects.
3. The Author.
Parallel VersesKJV: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son: