Losing Sight of the Lord

July 22, 2022

A little while, and you will not see Me; and again a little while, and you will see Me, because I go to the Father (John 16:16).

Quite often the words of Jesus have a double meaning - a physical and a spiritual meaning. It was true that after Jesus’ arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane, only two of the disciples saw very little of Him until after the resurrection. But Jesus not only was veiled from their physical sight after the arrest, He was also veiled from their spiritual sight. In fact, throughout most of His public ministry the disciples had lost sight of who Jesus really was. We have spoken of the fact that they, along with all of Israel, looked for a military/political Messiah who would save the nation from Roman occupation and authority. Jesus was not that Messiah. They looked for a prophet who, like John the Baptizer, would be bold enough to stand before the King and rebuke him for leading the people into slavery. Jesus was not that prophet. They looked for a man who would rally the people of Israel behind Him to deliver them to the glory days of Kings David and Solomon. Jesus was not that man. They had lost sight of the real Jesus. This sentiment was expressed by the disciples on the road to Emmaus after the crucifixion (Luke 24:21), But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel. Indeed, besides all this, today is the third day since these things happened.

This is further affirmed by the fact that when the women told the disciples that Jesus had been resurrected, they didn’t believe it. And when they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe . . . And they went and told it to the rest, but they did not believe them either (Mark 16:11,13). The disciples were affected by the trauma of emotional upheaval and suffered from a state of spiritual darkness and doubt. 

It is nothing short of the test of one’s faith in Jesus when Satan is allowed to attack the Christian with physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual trials and temptations. It is not God hating us, but God loving us. It is not God disappointed in us, but God strengthening us. It is not God punishing us, but God proving us. Never forget the patriarch Job who victoriously faced the fierce oppression of the enemy of God’s people. Never forget the wisdom of the Apostle James who said, My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing (James 1:2-4), or the words of the Lord to the Apostle Paul, And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness." Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ's sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong (2 Corinthians 12:7-10)We may not see the Lord present with us, but the Lord has promised He would never leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). Amen.

Pastor Martin

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