God is a God of order, and this is clearly seen in His creation (1 Cor. 14:33). Usually, when we think of order, we think of the order of arrangement. This thought is found in the New Testament word “world” (kosmos), which means “an orderly arrangement” (John 1:10). The placing of the members in the human body is a good example of the order of arrangement. Our arms, legs, nose, mouth, eyes, and ears are arranged in a balanced, orderly fashion. However, the primary order which God establishes in His creation is the order of authority, or government (Gen. 1:26). Without government, any order of arrangement would not last long. This too can be seen in the human body. The members of the body need to be governed, or disorder will result. The head of the body provides this needed government.
The universe that surrounds us is also an orderly arrangement. The movement of the planets is not haphazard, which leaves us guessing whether or not the sun will rise in the morning. These heavenly bodies are witnesses to the Creator’s eternal power and deity (Ps. 19:1-6; Rom. 1:20). Here again we see that God not only established the order of arrangement, but also the order of authority. The sun was to rule the day, while the moon was to rule the night.
There are many truths that one might glean from God’s stellar arrangement and government. The truth of headship is clearly illustrated. In the absence of the sun, the moon rules with the light given to it by the sun. So it is in God’s government. God has given all authority to the glorified Christ (Eph. 1:22). During Christ’s current absence from the earth, His authority is delegated to the man to lovingly govern in the family and in the church (Eph. 5:23, 25; 1 Tim. 3:1; John 10:11). It was this headship order that was set aside in the Garden by the man and the woman, but is now reestablished under the Headship of Christ in the new creation (Gen. 3:6; 1 Cor. 11:3). The new order of headship under Christ is also symbolically demonstrated by the uncovered head of the man, and the covered head of the woman in the spiritual gatherings of the saints (1 Cor. 11:10).
The sun and the moon also illustrate our responsibility to personally glorify Christ. John spoke of himself, not as the Light, but as a witness to the Light (John 1:8). Just as the moon reflects the light of the sun, John reflected the “Light of the world” to those around him. This should be true of us as well. In ourselves we have no light, but Christ lives in us, and we are to reflect Him to the dark world around us (Matt. 5:16).
The taking of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all nations is also illustrated by these heavenly bodies. The Son has given the Church power, in the person of the indwelling Holy Spirit, to take the Gospel “to the end of the earth,” even to the darkest areas (Acts 1:8).
Lastly, a very practical lesson can be learned from these two great lights of heaven. The moon is at its brightest when there is nothing between it and the sun. Its light is diminished as the earth moves between it and the sun. So it is with individual Christians and the Church. As the world comes between them and the Son, their testimony is diminished (1 John 2:15). We may bring so much of the world into our lives that there is no testimony for Christ at all (Rev. 3:16). When the things of the world take the place of the Son in our lives, we spend less time with Him, and our witness for Him is reduced accordingly (Col. 1:18). The more time we spend with Him, the more we become like Him, and the more we reflect Him to those still in the kingdom of darkness (2 Cor. 3:18; 4:6).
As we look into the heaven above us and see these two great lights, may we be reminded of these important and practical truths, and may we reflect the light of the Son to a dark world.