Summary: "Open our eyes, Lord, we want to see Jesus," are the words of a chorus that expresses the desire of all Christians. This study deals with how best to "see" Him.

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By Charles W. Holt

"And the LORD said, "You cannot see my face; for no man shall see Me, and live" (Ex. 33:20).

"No man hath seen God at any time" (Jn. 1:18; 1 Jn. 4:12).

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God" (Mt. 5:8).

Seeing God is extremely difficultif not impossiblefor some people. They can’t see God anywhere nor in anything. To others, there’s nothing to it, He is everywhere. This is PANTHEISM. In other words, He can be seen in every flower, tree, sunset, a baby’s smile, etc. On one hand you have all the poetic drivel, the empty imaginations of putting God in the wind, rain, sun, moon, stars, bushes and trees. On the other hand, we have what the Bible says IS possible and what people have found through their personal experience. Put objective fact,God CAN be "seen" with subjective experience, "that which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon we declare to you" (1 Jn. 1:1,2), and you arrive at the dynamic reality that God HAS BEEN and STILL IS being seen by multitudes of people today. (No, this is not an, "I was abducted by aliens" experience."

Seeing God in a pantheistic way and seeing God as revealed in the Scripture are at polar opposites. Our concern in this study (as it must be in life) is to see God as the Bible reveals. To see God is to know God; to experience God; to have a relationship with God, and eventually dwell in the very place where God actually resides. "That where I am, there you may be also" (Jn. 14:3). And, "They shall see His face, and His name shall be on their foreheads" (Rev. 22:4). So you see, for the believer, there is a present reality and a bright prospect for the future. "For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face" (1 Cor. 13:12).

Carrie Breck, in her hymn, FACE TO FACE, wrote:

Only faintly now I see Him,

With the darkened veil between,

But a blessed day is coming

When His glory shall be seen.

Face to face! O Blissful moment!

Face to face to see and know;

Face to face with my Redeemer,

Jesus Christ who loves me so.


Face to face I shall behold Him,

Far beyond the starry sky;

Face to face in all his glory,

I shall see Him by and by!

According to our study text, "the pure in heart" do now, and will later, see God. It is true that the impure in heart will also see God. It is appointed unto men once to die, then comes the judgment when all will see Him (see Heb. 9:27 with Rev. 19:11-15). This is validated from Revelation 1:7, "and every eye shall see Him even they who pierced Him." It takes little imagination to understand the difference there is of seeing God with a pure heart and seeing God with an impure heart. The "impure in heart" will only see God as the Judge and hear Him pronounce the sentence of eternal separation from His light and love, "Depart from me, ye evildoers! who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels" (Mt. 7:23, 25:41). The "pure in heart" will see God as Lord, Savior, Redeemer. They will enter into a joyful fellowship with Him forever. They will hear, "Come, you are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance (Mt. 25:34) and "... well done, good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your Lord" (Mt. 25:23).

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