#4 Can You See?

Can You See?

Ephesians 1:15-19 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints, Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers; That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him: The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us- ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,…

Look at Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians, he prays that they would be able to see. He wants God to give them the spirit of wisdom and revelation of the knowledge of Him-- of who? Paul wants the Ephesians to know this Jesus that died and bled and rose again for them!
The word revelation is apokalupsis, which is where we get our word apocalypse, which also has the meaning-- revelation. As a matter of fact, the word apokalupsis, is the Greek word used for revelation as in the Revelation of Jesus Christ. The whole concept of the book of Revelation is that there is a day on the horizon when that which has been hidden to the naked eye will be revealed, it will be unveiled; He will be unveiled and made manifest for all eyes to see.
In the meantime, Paul wants the Ephesians to be able to see today. He wants them to have spiritual eyes and understanding about the concepts he's spoken of before regarding the fact that God has a plan for creating a family that will dwell with Him for all eternity. He's creating a peculiar people that will show forth the praises of Him, a people called out of darkness into the light of God, and Paul wants them to be able to spiritually see that truth.
But understanding doesn't have eyes to see. Paul's point once again is that they be able to see spiritually. We've made this point in times past, but let's be reminded that before conversion man can't see the things of God because the things of God are spiritually understood and man's logic and natural thinking are contrary to the Spirit of God; therefore, in the unconverted state, or the Christian who walks in fleshly carnality, outside the leading of the Holy Spirit, he cannot perceive the things of God:
1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God:for they are foolishness unto him:neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.
The word eyes is ophthalmos and enlightened is photizo, from phos, where phosphorous comes from, which is glowing; essentially the idea is the emitting of light, without which the physical eye cannot see, and Paul is using that idea here, desiring in his prayers that the Ephesians would have their spiritual eyes opened and be given light by God to see spiritual truth. One more interesting thought in reference to the word phos, which, once again is the root of the word we're considering in this verse, photizo, is that it's the same Greek word translated as light in reference to Jesus-- that His life is the light of men (John 1:4).
There is great revelation to this thought through one of the miracles Jesus performed in the gospel of John. In all actuality, the whole gospel of John has as, at least one of its sub- themes, the thought of Jesus bringing light into the darkness. Even in the very beginning, we see the truth of light essential to God's plan for man; for without light, life cannot exist.
In the Genesis account of creation, God creates the heavens and the earth. The eternal Word speaks, while the Spirit hovers over the deep, and creation out of nothing (ex- nihilo) comes into existence. But there is darkness, so the word says let there be light, and through light, as we know, things can grow.
When we taught the gospel of John a few years back, God began to reveal to me that there was spiritual meaning deeper than our physical eyes were seeing. I'm not talking about some mystical Bible code. What I'm saying is that, while the gospel of John is truly a narrative of actual events and miraculous occurrences, there is also a spiritual context within the movement of these stories that tell of the deeper plans of God.
For instance, there is certainly a connection between the Genesis account and the gospel of John. And just as Genesis starts with God's creation, providing a place of habitation for humanity, John starts with the plan for a new creation in Christ. Whereas, the first creation provided a habitable place on earth for man, the new creation, through Calvary, provides a habitation for God to dwell on earth in the creation He loves after the catastrophic fall. We become the tabernacle or temple of God on earth until the Millennial Reign of Christ.   
In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God and nothing that was made was made without Him. He (the Word) was life, and the life was the light of men (paraphrase of John 1:1-4).
So we can see here the connection between life and light that was spoken clearly in the Genesis account, but we see in John that Jesus is life given by God to man, giving light to man, which is needed because of the fall. Between the first creation in Genesis and the advent of the new creation given in Jesus, mankind is in darkness, void of the true life of God, and separated from intimacy with God until life and light is given by God.
There is no doubt that there is also a transitioning from the Old Covenant to the New Covenant in the gospel of John. I've talked to you before about the first miracle at the Cana wedding when Jesus performed a transformation miracle, changing the internal contents of those vessels, symbolizing the message of the New Covenant where man, in the darkened state of sin has now been exposed to the life giving light of God, and it's about to change everything.
Nicodemus comes to Jesus at night. Representing the fact that he's walking in a state where he can’t see, he’s in darkness. He represents external religion, which can’t perceive the things of God. Jesus says, "I speak to you about earthly things and you don't understand. How will I tell you about heavenly things?"
Throughout the whole Gospel, I see these miracles and dialogues in the gospel of John repeatedly pointing to the new creation change. For instance, man separated from God can't walk right, and he can't see. In John chapter five, Jesus heals the lame man at the pool of Bethesda, asking him, "Will you be made whole? Rise pick up your bed and walk."
What about you believer or non believer whoever you are, will you be made whole? Will you let Jesus touch you and set you free?
But let's not lose sight with where we're going because in the gospel of John (chapter 9), we’re told that there is a man who was born blind from his birth. Man born in Adam is blind to the things of God. Yes, Jesus performs a miracle that day, and we need to be reminded and believe God that He will still do miracles today, but look at how Jesus chooses to perform this miracle. He takes the dirt of the earth, the same substance from which man was created, this creation made from dust, now in its fallen state and blind to the ways of God. This fallen man is in a hopeless state, he was formed from the dust, and because of sin, he will return to the dust. (Genesis 3:19). A mixture is made from two things dust (the frailty of man) and what comes out of Jesus’ mouth. I understand that He used His spit to mix this clay, but the mouth of Jesus is the most powerful thing that this earth has ever experienced; for out of His mouth proceeds the living word of God that spoke this world into existence. And Jesus mixes what's in His mouth with the substance from which fallen man was produced, the dust or dirt of the earth, and He brings light to this man's darkened eyes.
And He's the light of this world and He brings light to these darkened eyes, so they can see, and He brings life to these lame legs, so they can walk.
And in the Romans passage, Paul's prayer is that these Ephesians would be able to really see what God is doing. His prayer is that they would be able to see three specific things:
(1). He wants them to be able to see: "...that ye may know what is the hope of his calling,..."
(2). "...and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,..."
(3). "... And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us- ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,..."
(1).... the hope of his calling...

The word calling is klesis. I've already introduced this thought to you before, but let's keep it on the forefront of our minds. The word translated as church is ekklessia, which literally means, called out ones, so there is a calling of God reaching out to fallen humanity to receive the life and light that God is offering.
We see the call announced throughout scripture, from the Old Testament through the New; for the sake of time, we will just cover two thoughts:
A. The Eliezer Call
In Genesis chapter 24, we are given a thought known as the Eliezer call. Within this narrative story, we see certain characters that along with the story itself spiritually represent the calling of God. While we have already discussed in the past some thoughts about narrative literature in the Bible and how it tells a story, we should introduce here the thought that many times the characters in these narratives have attributes of deeper, even divine significance. Now, we must be careful not to over spiritualize the scriptures; nevertheless, there are times that God is obviously offering deeper meaning within His word than what lies on the surface in a narrative.
The safe way to make sure you're not over spiritualizing or reading something inaccurate into the text is to ask yourself this: "Is the thought that I think I'm seeing here consistent with the overall teaching of God? Furthermore, is there a New Testament truth that I can connect to this thought?"
If the answer is yes, while its not absolute certainty that you're not over spiritualizing, there is a good chance that the Holy Spirit is leading you to see a revelation about His word that He wants you to have.
In the story of the Eliezer call, Abraham is nearing the end of his life. This story occurs long after the promise has come and Sarah has died. Abraham, the father of the faith, the man who heard the call of the living God and obeyed, left the land of his heritage, and became a pilgrim in a land that he was promised but never possessed. Now, he’s preparing for his departure, and his main concern is to find a bride for the promised son. He goes to his main servant whose name is Eliezer and speaks to him about calling a bride for the son. He tells the servant that the bride must come from his people in the area of Babylon, and under no circumstances can the bride come from the land of Canaan.
Now, we don't have time to cover this right now, but Abraham's descendants in Ur of the Chaldees were heathens also; in other words, they didn't necessarily know the God of Abraham. With time, they will learn because Jacob will return and spend fourteen years there; nevertheless, there was always a lingering question in my mind on what the difference between the heathens of Ur versus the heathens of Canaan was.
I believe with all my heart now that it had something to do with the Nephilim seed that had filled the land of Canaan. I'm not saying that there were no Nephilim in the area of Babylon, but (Leviticus 18:4-30) is clear that one of the main reasons that God have the people that He created (Israel) the land of Canaan was because the inhabitants of that land had defiled it with their witchcraft.
In the story of the Eliezer call, Abraham represents the Father who sends the servant Eliezer, who represents the Holy Spirit to call a bride, representing the church, for the promised son Jesus.
B. A calling to the wedding feast (Matthew 22)
In this parable, the emphasis connecting the believer to God is related to their being present at the wedding feast. The marriage of the bride to the Son will result in a feast or banquet. Those that are present are the people that have accepted the invitation, those that have accepted the call of God. In the first scenario, the invitation went to Israel, specifically, Jesus is speaking to the religious leaders that are rejecting His ministry; they are rejecting the long awaited promised Messiah. They still haven't accepted Him; therefore, they're in rebellion towards Him right now as we speak.
Because of their rebellion and rejection, God has extended the call to others. Every nation, tribe, and tongue is being called during this time frame known as the church age. What will you do with the Son? Will you marry the Son? Will you be part of the bride of Christ?

(2). "...and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,..."
It should be noted that the inheritance spoken of here refers to the fact that it's His inheritance not ours that's being discussed; furthermore, God's inheritance, which is the saints, brings Him glory and is seen by God as "riches," literally a treasure. Don't ask me how, but in spite of the fact that we’ve made so many mistakes, God views us as an inheritance. The word saints means: the consecrated ones or holy ones. While we've made this excessively clear for several years, let's make sure we remain understood, the saints are consecrated and made holy in the eyes of God because they have been called through the gospel and responded by faith (Ephesians :13, 14), were baptized into Christ (Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12), where their relationship with sin in Adam was severed (Romans 6:6), they were connected to the vine (John 15), becoming a partaker of the nature of God (2 Peter 1:4), they were clothed with His righteousness (Galatians 3:27), and accepted in the beloved (Ephesians 1:6). The saints are "In Him," and "In Him," is a place separated out from the world (kosmos) this present evil age (2 Corinthians 6:14).

A. Riches
There are two New Testament parables that beautifully expound this thought:
Matthew 13:44-46 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field.
 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:
Matthew 13:46
Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.


In both these parables the throwing alongside (para (side) – ballo (to throw)) that's taking place is the kingdom of heaven being compared in the first to a treasure in a field and the second time to a priceless pearl. Now, on first glance, it would appear that these treasures represent the believer finding the Kingdom of God (Jesus) and then selling all they have in order to attain or own that possession, but whenever these two parables are compared to the ones that come before and after it becomes clearer what's being communicated.
In the parable before, the enemy sowed tares in the field and the message is that in the end the tares and the wheat will be separated where the tares will be judged and the wheat harvested (hallelujah)!
The parable after speaks of a net being cast into the sea where the good are kept and the bad aren't; furthermore, in both cases, the reader is made aware that the idea is that the wicked will be judged.
With that said the interpretation is that the pearl and treasure are the saints, and they are so precious to God that He sold all He had to purchase them. The Father released the most prize possession heaven ever held to earth so that sinful man, who God somehow sees as a pearl of great price and a treasure hidden in a field could be redeemed.
Interestingly, in both cases, the object was sought out by "God," which goes along with our calling by God. He's sent the servant, the Holy Spirit, who works through vessels, proclaiming the eternal gospel to a dying world. He's calling you Christian to get on board with what He's doing. He's calling you unbeliever to allow yourself to be that pearl or that treasure. He purchased you. Won't you allow yourself to be owned by Him?
B. Glory
So the idea, once again, is that the saints are a treasure, God's inheritance, and they bring Him glory. How does this work? How do the saints bring God glory?
First, it should be noted that God is deserving of glory and worship simply based upon the fact that He is God.
In the New Testament the word glory describes God's splendor and magnificence. He is worthy to have His glory recognized because He is God. This truth should be enough, but in this crazy world we live in, God is seen by some as an "ego-maniac" who demands to be worshiped or else. The spirit generating this deception to turn man from wanting to give God glory is the spirit of antichrist, which has been usurping God's glory since Lucifer's fall and in this present "cosmos," or evil age upon this earth, this lying spirit has been stealing God's glory since Eve's seduction.
We will also see as we move forward that there is an Old Testament thought translated as (God's glory) that describes His character, who He really is in all His majesty and splendor, which is really beyond man's ability to comprehend because man's mind is finite and God's glory is infinite; nevertheless, God wants to reveal to man as much of His character as He can, God wants to show His people what He really looks like while also wanting them to emulate Him; thereby reflecting His glory to those who are lost around them. This has always been His plan, and on this side of eternity that will never change.
   (a). New Testament: If believers reflect the glory of Jesus the way Jesus reflects the glory of the Father, God is magnified and the unredeemed are made aware of His presence and work upon this earth!
John 17-- Jesus' prayer to the Father uses the words "glory," "glorify," or "glorified" eight times in John 17. The essence of Jesus' prayer is that He has accomplished the work the Father has asked of Him. Jesus has glorified the Father in everything He’s done. Every selfless action, every miracle, every teaching that opened man's mind to a little more understanding of God, and especially, the ultimate price He will pay on the cross soon after this prayer, all brings glory to the Father.
There is also the foundational truth explained within this prayer that during this time known as the "church age" the disciples and those who believe because of their testimony (me and you) will bring God glory.
How do we bring glory to God? By living a life in front of the world that reflects His character!
    (b). Old Testament: In Exodus 33, God is angry with Israel because of their repeated rebelliousness. He tells them not to put on their ornaments (jewelry) obviously signifying happiness, because they are stiff necked and rebellious.
God tells Moses to go ahead, get up, and bring these stiff necked people that Moses has brought up out of Egypt into the Promised Land, but Moses' response is that he can't go if God won't go before him. He pleads with God and says if your presence doesn't go before us, we won't be separated from the other nations, and they won't know who you are. We need you God to be with us on this journey, and I can't do what you ask of me if you don't go before us. I won't go God. "If you won't go before us the deal is off because it’s doomed to failure." {Matt’s paraphrase}
God says; go you've found favor in my eyes. I will be with you. But Moses wants more. Moses needs more. He has to know more. He's still not ready because He has to better understand God, because if he doesn't understand the God he represents, He will never be able to represent him on this journey.
God's response is to bring Moses to a certain place. God describes this place as right beside Him. This is a place where one can get close to the God of the universe. This is a place where one can see all that he will ever be able to see of God on this side of eternity. The place beside Him that He speaks of is a cleft (a crevice) in the rock where God will hide Moses, and in this place, God will allow Moses to see as much of His glory as a man can be shown on this side of the eternal veil, during this time known as the Old Testament covenant.
The glory of God spoken of here represents God's character, it represents His person, who He really is and what His heart looks like.
God had a plan all along and this rock where Moses was hid is just a foreshadowing of a place called "In Christ."
This place called in Christ allows the New Testament believer to be planted in Him. On the cross, His side was opened and riven with the soldier's spear, just as a tree is opened so a new branch can be grafted, just as Eve was taken from Adam's side, a cleft was opened in the side of the rock, where a branch called bride could be planted into the vine, and in that place, God's glory, His character can be revealed. And when that character is revealed, embraced, and infused into the branch, God's glory is manifest to a lost and dying world through the fruit that is produced.
The first bride Eve, who was created from the side of Adam, was seduced by the serpent. The second bride Christian is being created in the riven (split) side of the last Adam, Jesus. But beware Christian soldier there is a serpent that still slithers, he slithers, and he injects with poisonous doctrine, and just as he seduced the First Lady Eve, he wants so badly, as a matter of fact, I can see no other purpose that his sick, blackened heart longs for other than to seduce and cause the bride of Christ to play the harlot with him.
(3). "... And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us- ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,..."
There are three Greek words here that caught my interest:
1. Exceeding- huperballo
   Ballo- to throw
   Hupo- under: huper- over

To throw over
2. Greatness- Megethos- of great magnitude
3. Dunamis- explosive, violent power.
All this is given "to us ward," who believe.
In other words, there is great power given to the believer in Christ. The question that should be asked is how does all this work? Your faith in Jesus Christ and Him crucified has allowed you to be a partaker in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus.
We need to understand that at the cross, God dealt a death blow to Satan's plans. When the innocent one died in place of the guilty, there was a pathway opened for sinful humanity to enter relationship with God, because a payment for sin's penalty was paid. Once the believer places faith in Christ, this debt transaction takes place where the sins are paid in full, the old man is dead, a new man resurrected, and the new man has huperballo megethos dunamis coming his way.
In other words, RESURRECTION POWER CHILD OF GOD. Jesus conquered death, hell, and the grave, and the same Spirit that dwells in you:
Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.