"I had heard of You with the hearing of the ear, but now my eyes have seen You."  Job 42:5...."Mary Magdalene found the disciples and told them, 'I have seen the Lord!'  Then she gave them His message." John 18:24

Watchman Nee writes, "For a year or two after my conversion I used to fear lest a modernist or an atheist should come along and prove to me the Bible was faulty and unreliable.  I thought, if he did, that would finish everything.  My faith would be lost; and I wanted to believe.  But now all is peace.  If all of them came and they brought as many arguments against the Bible as there are bullets in the armories of Europe, my answer would be one and the same.  'There is a great deal of reason in what you say - but I know my God.  That is enough.' "

Nee wrote those words more than 70 years ago, and they are as timely, even more so, as ever.  Those who profess faith in Him and in the truth and power of His Word are surrounded in our culture by scoffers and unbelievers.  Modernists, who have been around in every age, have gained influence both outside of and within the church.  Though we must have correct doctrine, theology, and biblical knowledge, these alone are no answer to their arguments.  Our answer can only be in Mary Magdalene's words, "I have seen the Lord!"  When we have truly seen Him, encountered Him face to face, heart to heart and life to life, then we have a response that all the knowledge, reasoning, and pride of this world can not stand against.  Like Nee, we can say, "I know my God.  That is enough." 

I think one of the great problems of the professing church today is that we are seeking to take His message to an unbelieving world without ever having truly "seen" Him with our own eyes.  Like Job, we have listened to countless sermons, read innumerable books, and spent hours reading His Word.  Our heads are filled with His Truth, but His image is not truly burned within our hearts.  We have heard with our ears, but we have yet to really see Him with the eyes of our hearts.  So we go out with a message that lacks the power of His Life.  Listeners are not convinced, and if they do agree, it is most often an intellectual, not a spiritual agreement.  No real transformation has taken place.  When Mary went to a group of disciples whose faith had been shattered, it was not the words of Jesus' message to them that convinced them to believe her, but the power of that which she had seen; the risen Christ.  Against such, nothing can stand.  It can be denied, rejected, turned away from, but not so the message of one who has truly "seen the Lord."  The power of such a message is such that you must choose to not believe it.

I know that there's been a great watering down of His Word in the professing church, but I don't believe that this is the real problem facing us.  I think it is a lack of teaching, preaching, and sharing His Word in the resurrection power of His life.  This can only come forth from lives that have experienced face to face encounters with Him, and not just once, but daily.  These come out of lives that are lived in His Presence, and they cannot be entered into in any way but being soaked in that Presence.  To have such a life, we must be single minded, single eyed, and single hearted.  He must be the "One thing," and in comparison with all other "things," the "only thing."  It is only that life and heart that will lay hold of and see Him.  Really see Him.  When I share His "message," I want it to be with the proclamation, both spoken and unspoken, of, "I have seen the Lord."  How about you?

Pastor O

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   May 2019   
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