GRACE to, and ’til, We See His Face

“And I will run the race, ’til I see His Face …”

 

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The Apostle Paul told the church at Philippi to “practice what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and model your way of living on it …” (Phil.4:9).  Undoubtedly he told Timothy the same (see II Tim.3:14,15) and even instructed him to “be calm and cool and steady, and accept and suffer unflinchingly every hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fully perform all the duties of your ministry.” (II Tim.4:5).  Paul could say this with authority to his disciple because he himself had lived this way until finally he would say two verses later: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”  How did the apostle do this?  By receiving “the superabounding, overflowing supply of Grace and of the gift of Righteousness” (Romans 5:17);  by looking not at the things which are seen but at the things which are not seen,  the eternal things;  by seeing Him Who is invisible.  It was as though Paul saw the Lord’s Face in the trials of his faith.  But no wonder:  he was seeking Him constantly – and seeing Him – in the Word  of God, in the Body of Christ and in many and varied tests and much tribulation.

 

“Oh, let me live in the Glory of Your Grace!”

 

Paul knew that the Glory of God was made manifest through His Grace Click To Tweet

 

Paul knew that the Glory of God was made manifest through His Grace.  He wrote in Ephesians 1:4-6 that He actually picked us out for Himself in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless in His sight, … before Him in Love.”  Why?  It “was His kind intent – that we might be to the praise and the glory of His Grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.”  It is indisputable that Paul knew, cherished, received and was cemented in Grace.  And by Grace he sought the Lord in everything;  he valued “face to Face” fellowship with the Lord more than anything.  Furthermore, it was this apostle who wrote “in everything give thanks” (I Thess.5:18), “for everything give thanks” (Eph.5:20), and,  “with all prayer and supplication made with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God” (Phil.4:6).  If we “see” Him in everything, it won’t be difficult to thank Him in and for everything.  Just as it was for Paul, it is for us now:  His Grace will always be sufficient.

 

“Looking away from all will distract to Jesus …” (Heb.12:2)

 

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The writer of the book of Hebrews – an epistle filled with the work of Grace – knew that this was the key to running and finishing our race well:  looking unto the One Who for the joy of obtaining to the Father Who infused Him with power and strength to endure the Cross and fulfill His Plan for our redemption.  Elsewhere in this book we read of Moses, who also “held staunchly to his purpose and endured steadfastly as one who gazed on Him Who is invisible.” (11:27).  The Lord Jesus looked to His Father, Moses gazed upon the Lord, and we seek and keep on seeking His Face, and are promised that we will “find” Him (Luke 11:9) and “see” His Face, by faith, in everything.

 

”  we walk with uplifted faces …”

 

When we look to Him we see only Mercy and Lovingkindness before His Face (Psa.89:14). Click To Tweet

 

Why?  Because our High Priest is seated at the Right Hand of the Father in the Holy of Holies in Heaven, to which we have unlimited access by His precious Blood, by Grace through faith (Rom.5:1,2).  “By Your [Grace] our horn is exalted, and we walk with uplifted faces because You are the Glory of our strength.” (Psa.89:17)  When we look to Him and gaze on Him we see only Mercy and Lovingkindness before His Face (Psa.89:14).  How this motivates us to come boldly to the Throne of Grace and bathe Him in worship as we present to Him our petitions with confidence!  We have the right to all that He is, all that He has, by Grace; and when we exercise this right of access to Him, He is glorified and pleased (Heb.11:6).  No wonder David “set the Lord continually before [him], knowing that “because He is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.” (Psa.16:8)

 

“Open my eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of Your [Word]” (Psa.119:18)

 

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How do we “see” His Face when He is not physically with us right now, as He was with His followers before the Cross?  The same way we walk (II Cor.5:7),  live (Hab.2:4), and fulfill His Eternal Purpose for us on earth:  by faith, the faith that comes by hearing His Word (Rom.1:17).  “The person who has My commands and keeps them is he who really loves Me … and I will show (reveal, manifest) Myself to him.  [I will let Myself be clearly seen by him and make Myself real to him.]” (John 14:21, Ampl)

Lord, pour out Your Grace on us to let Your Word enter our hearts;  and flood the eyes of our hearts with Your light, to see You clearly.  Please open our eyes to behold Your Face.  Amen.

 

Walking “in the light and [Grace] of [the Lord’s] countenance”

 

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“Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound … ;  they walk, O Lord, in the light and [Grace] of Your countenance!”  (Psa.89:15)  The “joyful sound” is that “clear, certain sound that Paul alluded to in I Corinthians 14:8 – the clearly spoken, clearly understood Gospel of the Grace of God.  Why would we not walk with “uplifted faces” to seek His when we know that before His Face is Mercy and Lovingkindness, and light and Grace?!  never condemnation, never one look of anger or disapproval, only unconditional Love and acceptance.  We now are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim … reflection … , but then [when perfection comes] we shall see in reality and face to Face! … ”  (I Cor.13:12a)  Just as He told His disciples that He would go before them to Galilee and that they would see Him there (Mark 16:7; 14:28), so He told us that He has entered into Heaven before us, to prepare a place for us to be with Him forever.

 

“It is the Lord!”

 

As we run our race, may we receive an abundance of Grace to seek and to see His Face in everything that happens in time and space – ’til finally we arrive at that “prepared place” and see Him Whom we so love, Face to face.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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