This year should be a year of great vision. Actually, every year should be. But with this year being 2020 we should all be desiring 20/20 vision. Therefore, let’s consider how we see Jesus. [don’t miss the fun video below — one minute and you will literally SEE Jesus).
We certainly don’t literally see Jesus, as those who lived during His earthly ministry did. But the Bible does talk about our seeing Him. Paul wrote that “we see Jesus” (Heb 2:9), so this raises the question, how do we see Jesus. Paul gave us the answer to that question. He wrote to the church at Ephesus that we have eyes of understanding…
Eph 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.
So let’s pause and consider further “the eyes of our understanding and how we see Jesus.
Believing is Seeing
Jesus tells us that by believing we see Him:
John 11:40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”
God was manifested in the flesh in the Person of Jesus, so the woman He was speaking to could actually see Him. So Jesus is speaking not of a literal, physical sight, but of a spiritual sight. And because Jesus is the “brightness of His [God’s] glory and the express image of His person” (Heb 1:3), we are able to see Him when we believe, that is, when we have faith. I have written much about what faith is (Read: What is Faith? How do I get it? How do I grow it? Is Faith to Believe a Gift from God? Given to Some But Not All? What Does It Mean To WALK BY FAITH?) Understanding true faith helps in understanding how we see Jesus.
The reformers were likely the first to define faith as beginning with knowledge (using the eyes of our understanding, about which Paul wrote). And that knowledge, we know, comes from the revelation of Jesus in the Word of God.
Rom 10:17 …faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
We must make a conscious choice to read and study the Bible to know who Jesus is and what He has done. Then there’s a choice to believe or reject that which one has read. While knowledge should always lead to believing God because God’s Word is true and trustworthy, true faith comes only when we receive, believe, and trust in the Word of God. Trust is an exercised belief. One can believe in something and yet not trust.
For example, everyone knows that parachutes save lives. We also believe that they will open and glide someone to a safe landing if a plane is going to crash. However, if someone puts on a parachute but doesn’t trust it enough to jump out of the plane, the person will crash with the plane. They didn’t trust the parachute to do what they knew and believed it was capable of doing. Or they didn’t believe they needed it.
Trust is a choice and, in spiritual terms, it is turning from self-dependency and depending on God. Only by knowing, believing, and trusting is one is able to surrender to God, confess one’s sins, and ask for forgiveness. That’s true saving faith (Eph 1:13) and true sanctifying faith (Prov 3:5-6).
True Faith Produces Seeing
So it’s not simply about believing. Even the demons believe (James 2:19). While it’s okay to use the word believing (“believing is seeing”), we must understand it means a true faith (knowledge, belief, and trust). Only true faith leads to the grace of God being poured out and a sinner being regenerated to new life in Christ and sealed by the Holy Spirit.
20/20 Vision in 2020
This year, let’s seek after a clearer vision of the Lord Jesus Christ, that we might see Him more clearly, follow Him more nearly, and love Him more dearly.
Peter wrote, “whom having not seen you love” (1 Pet 1:8). And it’s true, we haven’t seen Jesus with our physical eyes. But all who belong to Him do see Him (Heb 2:9), for we see with spiritual “eyes” (the eyes of understanding, Eph 1:18). Therefore, make this a year of commitment to Bible reading. Open the Scriptures, reading for knowledge, believing God, and trusting completely in our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Keep looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith (Heb 12:2).
Pause to See Jesus
See the little baby in a manger so long, long ago. See the Blessed Saviour, Christ the King. See the Ministering Servant of God for men; and the Son of Man, and the Son of God. We have seen our Salvation and we have received His light and life. Pause and stand in awe and see Jesus.
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Eph 1:18 the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,
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