Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Orange Moon Tuesday, March 19, 2024 "Behold" Part 3 - First Gaze

The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…


Part 3 - First Gaze

      "Beholding as in a glass (mirror) the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord" (II Corinthians 3:18).

    What is God's primary view of all born again believers in the Lord Jesus Christ?  What does He first and most think about us?

    The answer lies not primarily in ourselves or our response to Him, but rather in the Lord Jesus Christ.  He sees His Son in us, and us in His Son.  How could it be otherwise?  God's devotion to the Lord Jesus means that His first gaze in every venue will always rest upon Him.  "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matthew 3:17).  If Christ lives in us - which He does if we have trusted Him - we can be absolutely certain that our Heavenly Father first sees as united to the Beloved, and as beloved in Him.

    "Because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba Father" (Galatians 4:6).

    "We are bound to give thanks always to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord" (II Thessalonians 2:13).

    Such blessed truth does not discount the importance of our faithful response to God in thought, attitude, word, and deed.  It does, however, establish the basis upon which such faithfulness consistently and increasingly flows in our lives upon the current of  Christ's centrality in God's purpose and working.  We shall never get far in the Christian life by focusing on ourselves, particularly since this is not our Father's first gaze upon us.  "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith" declares the writer of Hebrews as the power that enables our arising to walk in trusting obedience (Hebrews 12:1-3).  Knowing this to be God's focus as He sees us in Christ properly humbles and encourages us to avail ourselves of a grace even eternity will not fully unveil to our hearts.  "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound, that as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord" (Romans 5:21).

    If ever we doubt this first gaze of our Father upon us, whereby He sees us in Christ and eternally united to Him as His beloved sons and daughters, let us attune our hearts to the echoes of a sad and forlorn cry from long ago: "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" (Matthew 27:46).  To the degree God the Father turned His gaze away from the Son "made to be sin for us," He will always and forever see us in the same Son, adorned with His righteousness (II Corinthians 5:21).  What does He first think when He looks upon us?  We find the answer in the Lord Jesus, and in the grace of His merits freely imputed and forever shining forth from us in the eyes of God.  As the hymnwriter Isaac Watts beautifully composed,  "And lest the shadow of a spot should on my soul be found, He took the robe the Savior wrought, and cast it all around!" ("Awake My Heart, Arise My Tongue").  

   In this moment and forevermore, God sees His sons and daughters in Christ as enrobed with the righteousness of the Lord Jesus, based upon our Savior having been enrobed with our sin on the cross of Calvary.  Such truth will cast us to our faces in astonished wonder, and then lift us up to walk in the faith and faithfulness that ensues when we look unto the Author and Finisher of our faith in the grateful realization that our Father forever directs His first gaze upon the same.

"Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption."

(I Corinthians 1:30)

Tomorrow: Seeing as God sees.

Weekly Memory Verse

     Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

 (II Corinthians 3:18)


No comments: