25th June 2012

Under His Tender Gaze

“For if a man is in Christ he becomes a new person altogether—the past is finished and gone, everything has become fresh and new.”
2 Corinthians 5:17 (Phillips Revised Edition)

Years ago stage magicians had a catchphrase that they would use as they performed their slight-of-hand in front of the audience. In a very dramatic voice and sometimes with a drum roll they would declare: “Right before your very eyes!” Usually at that point something would disappear, appear, or be transformed into something else and the audience would gasp.

I noticed that Paul uses the phrase, “holy and blameless in his sight”, in his letter to the Church at Ephesus. He says, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For He chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight” (Ephesus 1:3 NIV). Instead of “in his sight”, other versions render it “before him”, but whatever way you slice it, this is telling us that we are holy and blameless before his eyes, in his presence, before his throne, face to face, and up close and personal! Markus Barth comments on this verse that, “All this denotes the immediate presence of God to man, and the closest proximity of man to God. The image suggests the position and relationship enjoyed by the cream of society at a royal court, by children to their father, by a bride to a bridegroom…”

The eternal purpose of the Father is to bring us into his house; and not just into his house but to his table; and not just to his table but to his right hand; and not just to his right hand but into conversation with him; and not just into conversation with him but into face-to-face fellowship! What an amazing Father, and did you notice in the scripture above all this was planned a long time ago, actually—before the foundation of the world.

When this happens something disappears—the old self, and something appears—a new creation, that is, the life and light of Jesus in you. There is a transformation—we are holy and blameless right before His very eyes! Did that make you gasp?

Our amazing Father, thank you so very much for the great plan that you formulated long before we were ever created; a plan to reconcile us to yourself and to be holy and blameless before you in Jesus Christ your Son.

Study by Cliff Neill 

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