“The light is pleasant; it is good for the eyes to see the sun.”
How appropriate this verse is on this grey and rainy morning in western Pennsylvania. Winters here tend toward grayness and a lot of clouds. It is not that we never see the sun in the winter, but it just does not seem to be the norm for this region at this time of the year. And, for those with depression, I am told this time of the year here can be very difficult as sunshine does affect our moods. And I suppose, too, that if you have a vitamin D deficiency, these grey, cloudy days do not help either.
There is no question that it is good for us to see the sun. Many years back, the job I worked typically had me scheduled from 4PM to 2AM. The fact is, I slept through most of the sun of the day. My mother used to say that I had never been more grouchy and brooding than the two years I worked that set of shifts. Funny how much the sunshine can affect us. And thus, Solomon gives us the reminder that it is good for our eyes to see the sun.
There is a spiritual application to this as well. God is Light, we are told in 1 John 1:5 and in Him there is no darkness. It is certainly true that John is using the contrast between light and darkness as a metaphor to contrast good and evil, truth and a lie, but the principle bears pointing out that if we wish to truly see and understand, we can only do so in the light of God — a light that comes out of and through his Word. If we wish to see, we cannot see without it. If we wish to know truth, we cannot know truth apart from the word of God. And thus, it is very good for the eyes to see the light of God in this absolute sense.
We are promised a time, in the new creation, where there will be no darkness and the nations will walk by the light of the lamp of the Lamb of God (Revelation 21:22-24). In fact, in the new creation we are told here that there will be no sun or moon because the glory of God will give it light. Jesus indeed is the “effulgent splendor” or the “radiance of the glory of God” as the author of Hebrews writes (Hebrews 1:3). He will indeed be the light that is good for our eyes. Until that time though, we must look to and see that light in the Word.
It is good for the eyes to see the sun, but it is far better for the eyes to gaze upon the Son.