Dim Light to Dazzling Bright

In my recent trek down south, I stayed three nights in a respectable B & B, run by a local physician and his wife. I was accommodated in the older part of the house, which suited me wonderfully well. The room was built in 1590, and the original fireplace and timber framing were well visible. I was warned about the small window, above, and provided with a little board on a stick with which to cover it up. The first night, I did nothing.

At 5.30 am, above, enough light came in to awaken me.

By 6.30 am, below, the room seemed awash with sunlight.

The next evening, I covered it up.

I suspect that the little window was designed for that purpose- to wake up the occupants within. When candlelight was expensive and wages hard to get, one made greater use of daylight. Daytime is worktime, and work keeps one out of penury. For a chap on holiday, it was annoying. To a former Elizabethan occupant, it was most useful. Upon rising, I opened the main curtains before going out into the cloudless, sunny skies of Bury St Edmunds.

In my recent reading of Bishop Ryle’s Holiness, I came across the following, in the chapter Christ is All:

In every part of both testaments, Christ is found- dimly and indistinctly at the beginning, more plainly and clearly in the middle, fully and completely at the end- but really and substantially everywhere.

He goes on to give numerous examples, from righteous Abel’s sacrifice to the tabernacle, temple and prophets. Whereas Eve, Enoch and Noah had a little understanding of Messiah’s coming, like the dawn light creeping through my window, later generations of Jewish prophet understood much more. Similarly, we saints in possession of the full scriptural canon are basking in the wonderful knowledge of the gospel’s completion. We only now await our departure from this earthly house, when, in the unobstructed radiance and brilliance of His glory, we shall see all and know all.

His glory covered the heavens,

And the earth was full of His praise.

His brightness was like the light;

He had rays flashing from His hand.

Hab. 3:3-4a