A bright reminder in the sky of what is to come

Did you see it the last couple mornings, just before dawn?

If you looked east, when the sun was still below the horizon, the moon was shining.

The moon’s glow, with the sun’s growing radiance, made all the stars in the sky fade from view, except for one very bright object.

What was that?

The International Space Station, perhaps? No.

On Thursday that bright object was just left of the moon. Yesterday morning and this morning, it was just above the moon.

Tomorrow morning, the moon will rise in the east in such close alignment with the sun that we won’t see the moon, but if skies are clear we will see that same bright object above the sun before dawn and at daybreak.

What will it be?

The planet Venus.

Since ancient days people have called Venus, far brighter than the brightest star, “the morning star.”

The same name comes up in the Bible (2 Peter 1:19, Revelation 2:28 and 22:16).

For instance, in one Scripture’s last verses, Jesus says, “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you this testimony for the churches. I am [...] the bright Morning Star.”

Jesus is the planet Venus?

No, Jesus shows that God’s ultimate day is soon to dawn.

“As the morning star in the east is the clear proclamation of the coming of a new day,” writes Siegbert Becker, “so the coming of Jesus into the world brings to those who know him as their Savior the sure promise of the great, new eternal day which will never again be followed by a dark night.”

If you’re up early tomorrow or Monday morning, look east. Ponder Jesus’ coming.

Keep looking for Jesus in the Bible, also, to find sure hope.

Peter writes, “We possess the prophetic word as an altogether reliable thing. You do well if you pay attention to this as you would to a light shining in a murky place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.”

Venus will rise in your heart?

No, Jesus will. On the last day, not only will he will appear to all people, but he will finally fill all who have been awaiting him with all light-- with his perfect love and wisdom.

Come, Lord Jesus!

Rev. Daniel A. Witte, pastor of Risen Savior Lutheran Church, can be reached at 747-5564. For more information, see Faith Matters is a regular feature of Saturday’s Herald, written by local clergy members.