Monday, April 9, 2018

Seeing Jesus Is Much More Than Accepting Jesus

After that, He appeared in another form to two of them… —Mark 16:12

{CHAMBERS} “Being saved and seeing Jesus are not the same thing. Many people who have never seen Jesus have received and share in God’s grace. But once you have seen Him, you can never be the same. Other things will not have the appeal they did before. You should always recognize the difference between what you see Jesus to be and what He has done for you. If you see only what He has done for you, your God is not big enough. […] Have you seen Jesus? If so, you will want others to see Him too. “And they went and told it to the rest, but they did not believe them either” (Mark 16:13). When you see Him, you must tell, even if they don’t believe. O could I tell, you surely would believe it! O could I only say what I have seen! How should I tell or how can you receive it, How, till He bringeth you where I have been?”

{ELGIN} When I read this morning’s My Utmost devotion I was reminded of something my “dad” used to say.  “That we would see Jesus.”   (John 12:20-23) “Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the festival. They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request. “Sir,” they said, “we would like to see Jesus.” Philip went to tell Andrew; Andrew and Philip in turn told Jesus. Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.”  That was his heart to know more about Jesus.  I used quotes around “dad” because the man I am referring to is, by law, my step father, Don Pierson.  But he was the most influential on my life – even though he asked that I not call him dad out of deference to my biological father. 

(Allow me to step out of this devotion for a moment.  I will be 68 this year and the impact of my parents divorce when I was but 2 years old, still rests on my heart.  Don’t believe for a minute that the “kids will be OK”  God hates divorce for a reason.  It is not merely a violation of trust between a man and woman before God, it has a ripple effect for generations through generations.  It is forgivable but there are consequences .. don’t deceive yourself so you can get what you want … (Malachi 2:16) “For the Lord God of Israel says That He hates divorce, For it covers one’s garment with violence,” Says the Lord of hosts. “Therefore take heed to your spirit, That you do not deal treacherously.”)

Back to the point … I thought it was interesting that John does not write that Jesus welcomed the Greek proselytes (gentiles who converted to Judaism) but instead said that it was time to be glorified .. to do what the Father had sent Him to do .. offer Himself as a sacrifice for Sin and defeat eternal death – separation from God and bring eternal life.  (1 John 5:10-12) “He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.” To see Jesus is to embrace Him and our life in Him.  That is so much more than salvation, baptism, and going to church.  It is loving God with your whole heart and being “unblemished” by  the world.  That is where so many of us struggle.  Letting go of our love for worldly things.  It’s OK to have them but it’s not OK to love them more than God. What are you clinging to? If you want to see Jesus, and you should, then you must leave your nets, pick up your cross and follow Him.

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