Having Eyes that See…
Then He turned to His disciples and said privately, “Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see; for I tell you that many prophets and kings have desired to see what you see, and have not seen it…Luke 10:23,24 NKJV
“Seeing” is multi-faceted! It is so because we all bring such varied contexts to what we are perceiving. Because our life experiences are so different, we bring myriad different colorings to what we are looking at. The lens through which we look is ground and refined by all that has shaped and informed our lives and is coated with a unique “belief” bias. Therefore, many different perceptions can come from numerous people looking at the same thing.
Then, there is also the difference in seeing between the literal and the metonymy (a figure of speech; the use of one name for another of which it is an attribute or shares an association). For example, two persons in looking at the same flower bud respond thusly: One says, “I see a new flower sprouting,” and the other says. “I see resurrection.”
From an Arthur Conan Doyle novel, consider Watson’s perception at Holme’s question:
“Holmes and Watson are on a camping trip. In the middle of the night Holmes wakes up and gives Dr. Watson a nudge. “Watson” he says, “look up in the sky and tell me what you see.”
“I see millions of stars, Holmes,” says Watson.
“And what do you conclude from that, Watson?”
Watson thinks for a moment. “Well,” he says, “astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo. Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three. Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. Theologically, I see that God is all-powerful, and we are small and insignificant. Uh, what does it tell you, Holmes?”
“Watson, you idiot! Someone has stolen our tent!”
One of the most fascinating things about reading the Bible is the multi-layered meanings that one discovers. Reading the Word just for its literal understanding leaves the richest substance still buried or unmined. To “mine” the greatest ore one must spend time studying, researching, meditating and praying. Additionally, one must have an ever continually developing relationship with the Lord. I think in general that simply accepting things at face value without curiosity and investigation leaves a person poorer for the experience. God designed his Word to be scoured for all its worth. The Greek for “revelation” is apocolyptou which carries the connotation of something having been covered or hidden with the idea of being discovered.
It is the glory of God to conceal a matter; to search out a matter is the glory of kings.” Pro 25:2 NIV
Part of the joy and power of seeing beyond the literal meaning of Scripture is in how it impacts our lives transformationally. Most of our lives we are taught to read informationally. Not that there is anything wrong with that mode of reading, but learning to hear the voice of God directly to our hearts through Scripture is life changing. It is like following the example of the disciples whom Jesus addressed in our opening Scripture. When I read the Word, I am always thinking there must be something more to it than I am presently seeing. Then when you sense the Lord calling your focus to a particular word, phrase or passage, you can start mining usually by looking up individual words in the original languages.
Prior to sharing privately with his disciples, Jesus prayed, giving thanks to the Father and prayed thusly:
O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike…”Luke 10:21 NLT
Whenever we think or believe we have the bottom line on something, we have basically shut down revelation. Whatever the subject, if I’m dogmatically holding to a set position, I will not consider possible alternatives to what I believe. Jesus encouraged a childlike and even naïve approach that we might see with the eyes of God. This is partly why it is spiritually perilous to implacably codify so-called tenets of the faith. Once that happens, we are no longer inquisitive, no longer probing, so we are no longer open to what the Lord may be saying further on some subject or issue.
There are truths in Scripture that may not literally materialize or come into fullness until God’s timing is fulfilled. However, we still choose to believe them and live by their essence. For example, Paul wrote this to the church in Ephesus:
For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus.” Eh 2:6 NLT
Many believers may take this passage spiritually to be futuristic in nature, like something that will be true when we die and go to heaven. Others will see it as a literal happening in heaven one day. Still others will adopt a spiritual seeing in which they will choose to live out of the truth as it presently exists. If I am in fact seated with Christ in the realm he occupies as a spiritual reality, then I am going to attempt living my life from that point of view. It means that spiritually I would be in a position of authority. It means that I would be empowered by his life to live as he would live. I would attempt to emulate Christ in all my thoughts, attitudes, behaviors, values, goals, aspirations, treatment of others and responses to all of life’s exigencies.
Having blessed eyes that see, as Jesus credited the disciples, can be seeing a finished work while it is presently in seed form. We see this in the natural, for example, in sports. A coach or trainer can often observe a young, inexperienced, novice athlete and see a potential hall of famer. On that analysis, the coach would than proceed to invest effort, encouragement and training that would lead to the realization of what he really saw. There is a sense in which all parents should perceive their children in this way. Then they would treat their children from the standpoint that they are going to mature into the productive, responsible adult they see in their mind’s eye. Having this kind of blessed eyes is like looking at an acorn but visualizing a mighty oak tree.
When activity bogged down during the building of the second temple following the Babylonian captivity, Zechariah prophesied concerning Zerubbabel with a view toward seeing the finished project. To the average person, all they would have seen was piles of building materials. But Zechariah had blessed eyes and said this:
Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain! And he shall bring forth the capstone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!” Zech 4:7 NKJV
When the foundation for the second temple was laid, those who had seen Solomon’s temple wept as they compared their vision of what was being built to the original. However, the Bible says that many looking at that foundation shouted for joy. We recall that Haggai prophesied that “The glory of this latter temple shall be greater than the former.” Those shouting for joy had the blessed eyes.
There is a wonderful account in Luke’s gospel that should inform and motivate all of us to see as God sees. When Joseph and Mary took the baby Jesus to the temple in Jerusalem for the purification offering, they encountered Simeon, a righteous, devout and Spirit filled man who wholly anticipated the coming of Messiah. In fact, the Lord had revealed to him that he would not die until he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. The Holy Spirit led Simeon to the Temple the very day Jesus was dedicated. When Simeon saw the baby Jesus, he praised God, took Jesus in his arms and said:
Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you may now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation…”Luke 2:29,30 NLT
Simeon was looking at and holding a baby but he was seeing the Messiah, the King of kings and Lord of lords, the Lion of Judah, the bringer of salvation to the whole earth. Simeon obviously had an awesome relationship with God and God had given him blessed eyes.
Simeon is like a type of how every believer in Christ should see. When Jesus ministered and called persons to come and be his disciples, he qualified the calling by telling them, “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” He later said, “So no one can become my disciple without giving up everything for me.” When Simeon knew that he was seeing the Messiah, he was released to die. When we know that we are seeing the Messiah, we are released to die to self, take up our cross and follow. We will not initially see the completion or fulfillment of all Messiah is destined to do, but we see Jesus.
You have put all things in subjection under his feet.” For in that He put all in subjection under him, He left nothing that is not put under him. But now we do not yet see all things put under him. But we see Jesus…” Heb 2:8,9 NKJV
When I see how Simeon responded to the baby Jesus, when I read that everything has been subjected to him, put under his feet, I know that I am to see Christ in all things. I know that my all my thoughts, attitudes, behaviors and responses should reflect that reality. Knowing that I am in Christ and that that is the way the Lord sees me, releases me to break out of the bondage of all past damaging experiences and live out of who I am in Christ. I can choose to live as an overcomer rather than remaining a victim of past injuries. I want to hear Jesus say to me…
Blessed are the eyes which see the things you see.
There are satanically ritually abused persons for whom the conclusion of this article may appear overly simplistic and may seem more like a dream and who may need additional care and help in overcoming the dreadful abuse to which they have been subjected. You can find multiple resources available on this website that can open ministry possibilities specifically oriented toward SRA victims.