"The Shadow of Death" is translated from the Hebrew צַלְמָוֶת (tsalmaveth), and from the Greek σκιά (skia) in combination with θάνατος (thanatos). The definition of both the Hebrew and Greek is: "shade caused by the interception of light, or an image cast by an object and representing the form of that object." Notice two things about shadows: 1) they are not a part of the actual object from which they are cast; and 2) the object casting the shadow does so by coming between the light source and the object upon which the shadow is cast!
Jesus said, "I AM the Light of the world: he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the Light of Life" (Jn. 8:12). Ironically, the "person" who blocks God's light from reaching man is the fallen angel who once was called Lucifer [the Hebrew הֵילֵל (heylel)], which means "light bearer"; it is the devil (Mt. 13;19; Eph. 6:12; Heb. 2:14)! In John 11:25-26, Jesus makes an incredible statement: "Jesus said unto her, I AM the resurrection, and the life: he who believes in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever lives and believes in Me shall never die." Of course, He was referring to the "second death" (Rev. 2:11; 20:6, 14; 21:8)!
Here are ten of the twenty times the "shadow of death" is found in God's Word:
1. Job 12:9, 22 - "...the LORD...discovers deep things out of darkness, and brings out to light the shadow of death."
2. Job 34:22 - "There is no darkness, nor shadow of death, where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves."
3. Psalm 23:4 - "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff they comfort me."
4. Psalm 107:8-10 - "Oh that men would praise the LORD for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! For He satisfies the longing soul, and fills the hungry soul with goodness. Such as sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and iron."
5. Isaiah 9:1-2 - "...in Galilee of the nations....The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them has the light shined."
6. Jeremiah 2:6 - "Neither said they, Where is the LORD Who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, Who led us through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through, and where no man dwelt?"
7. Jeremiah 13:16 - "Give glory to the LORD your God, before He causes darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while you look for light, He turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness."
8. Amos 5:8 - "Seek Him Who makes the seven stars and Orion, and turns the shadow of death into the morning, and makes the day dark with night: Who calls for the waters of the sea, and pours them out upon the face of the earth: The LORD is His name."
9. Matthew 4:16 - "The people who sat in darkness saw great light; and to them who sat in the region and shadow of death, light is sprung up."
10. Luke 1:79 - "To give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."
FOR THE BELIEVER IN CHRIST, DEATH IS BUT A SHADOW!