I had a conversation the other day with an older gentleman that sparked my interest. At first his incoherent ramblings in a broken back-country slang came off to me as non-intellectual and incoherent. I was about to wish this gentleman “adieux” until he asked a question…one of which at first seemed the strange rantings of an old man, until I considered it more deeply. In short the gentleman believed something in or from our eyes went out to an object and came back to our brains and registered seeing it, such as the moon, he felt as though something within our physicality projected itself millions of miles away and returned to give our brains the information. At first this question puzzled me until I saw significance in it. I thought of science… Light. What is it? This world and everything we see is the result of light being projected from a source and our vision of objects and such are as a result of light being absorbed and reflected from said objects and being received by our brains and translated into images in our minds. We are receivers, we are observers. Nothing from within us actually goes out to something as if to respond to the world around us through sight, but we visually receive the reflections of the sun (during the day), the moon (the reflection off of a giant rock in the sky from the sun), and artificial lights we have created.
So…thinking about this as in the days past without electricity and technology…our light as humanity (other than fire) is the sun (whether directly during the day or reflected during the night) all that we see is a result of this giant ball of fire in the middle of our solar system. It is the rays of light being emitted by said “ball of fire” through the atmosphere, reflecting off of objects, being received with our eyes, and our minds interpreting it as sight.
Now…here comes the cool part…the part that gave me goosebumps for about 20 minutes…
In heaven…there is no sun… The Bible says in Revelation 22:5 “And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the LORD God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.” The glory of the LORD will be what is being emitted onto everything, being absorbed by everything His glory touches, and being received with our eyes. THIS is what it means to “behold His glory.” We will receive physically the very presence of God visually into our eyes. “The King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see,” (1 Timothy 6:15-16). Currently we are unable to behold His glory fully…or else we would die. But He has chosen to reveal Himself in a way we CAN observe Him, look upon Him,
Revealing…this is why God’s revelation of His grace, His mercy, His goodness, His majesty, and His glory through Jesus Christ (“we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father” – John 1:14 – John’s recollection of a time when even a hint of Jesus’ deity was revealed to them visually in the transfiguration) are so pivotal…it is what is received, it is what is revealed. We see the Glory of God through creation, through His Son Jesus Christ, through the revelation of prophesy, and through the revealed Word of God. This is why the scripture is so incredibly important the protection of His word so essential. It is the revealed character, Words, teachings, and communication of God Himself to humanity.
However, we WILL see Him…”And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the LORD who is the Spirit,” (2 Corinthians 3:18). We do not see Him yet…
“In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the [revealing] of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls” (1 Peter 1:6-9).
Finally, Jesus declares Himself such a giver of light. “I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star” (Revelation 22:16).
There is a lot here that can be taken too far in this analogy. I do not presume to say that this analogy is comprehensive nor too lofty an idea to comprehend, but is something that might change the way we think about seeing the glories of God, beholding His majesty, worshiping Him through what we see with our spiritual eyes, and looking forward to what we will see with our spiritual eyes. Even though we physically see now because of a giant ball of fire in the universe (and technology), we (those who believe in Christ, that He is God, who submit to Him as LORD) will behold His glory with open eyes, with confidence, approaching Him in “inapproachable light” with confidence, and He will be the source of all things visible and revealed in eternity to come. A pretty cool thought when you start to dwell on it a while. I know this blog is not extensive nor am I trying to be…simply a strange conversation that turned into a spiritually enlightening and open door for the gospel with an old country man who God blessed me with the opportunity to share a cool “ah ha” moment with the other day.
“This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all,” (1 John 1:5).