18 She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
We have another insistent reference to night, and again underscoring the reason why I believe that night is so significant. Just read my comments on verse 15.
Merchandise, more importantly than just being something you sell, as in Proverbs 3:14 it is something of great value. There is nothing of greater value than the gospel of salvation through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
The candle is the light that the church emits and as it shows in Revelation as Christ talks to the church at Ephesus, which has left its first love, He has power to remove the candlestick by which the light has a sure place if the church wanders from its mission. American Christianity went off the rails in the 19th century when government became to be viewed as a means to an end and eventually the government began to take over the role of, first, as God’s agent on earth rather than the church, and then, second, in place of God Himself. This is a heresy of both the left and the right, of both liberal and conservative. You look at government, rather than God, to make all crooked places straight and bring all hills to ground level, or you look at government rather than God, to enforce religious dogma, your own personal convictions particularly. American pastors, whether they preach a feelgood gospel or stand in the pulpit and curse the government from the left or the right, have placed government in the position of God and as an excuse for not shining in the world themselves as examples.
Remember, there can be no law made against the fruit of the Spirit named in Galatians 5:22. Its impossible to prevent the church from shining in the world no matter how anti-Christian a government can be.
The church’s merchandise is good and her light shines through the night. When it stops shining and Christians have no impact on the world around them it is a sad day.