What do you see?

How about the man who came to Jesus at night? Perhaps afraid of being seen by his colleagues. He wanted to know who this Jesus was. When asked about re-birth, he became confused and Jesus seemed to have expected more from him since he was a “teacher of Israel”.

What do we see?

A man hampered by public opinion. A man afraid to break free from unsubstantiated tradition.

What did Jesus see?

One of three men who would take him off the cross and place him into a tomb … and that in broad daylight.

What about a man who exited a boat during a storm only to sink in unbelief. A man who claimed that he would go to death to defend Jesus … and then failed to do so. A man who cut off the ear of the slave of the high priest with a sword. A man who denied that he knew Jesus at a most inopportune time.

What do we see?

A man who all too often acted before thinking, perhaps disproportionately driven by emotion and not truth. A man who vacillated uncontrollably.

What did Jesus see?

A man with passion who left 11 others behind in the warm, safe, dry boat to attempt to walk to Jesus. A man who left 9 behind to attempt to follow Jesus through His trials and conviction. A man who again left 6 behind in the boat to swim to shore, desperate to attempt to make it right with His Savior. A man who said “Lord, you know all things, I love you as a brother”. A man who would ultimately lead the reimaging 10.

And how about a young up and comer who perhaps stayed in the background as he observed Jesus teaching in the Synagogues? A man who was advancing beyond all his pears, “circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless”. A man strategically excluded from the original 11.

What do we see?

A man who would actively try to stamp out the Church.

What did Jesus see?

The secret weapon that not even Satan recognized. The man who would write almost half of the new testament. A man who would take the good news to the known world.

Imagine Jesus viewing Paul, perhaps even making eye contact, not saying a word to anyone. All the time knowing who Paul was … and what he would become.

Oh, that God would grant us to see more as He see.

 

Finally, a town in the center of the known world at the time. Comments of her were as follows:

Luke 13: 34 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, just as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not have it! 35 Behold, your house is left to you desolate; and I say to you, you will not see Me until the time comes when you say, ‘BLESSED IS HE WHO COMES IN THE NAME OF THE LORD!’”

Luke 19: 41 When He approached Jerusalem, He saw the city and wept over it, 42 saying, “If you had known in this day, even you, the things which make for peace! But now they have been hidden from your eyes. 43 For the days will come upon you when your enemies will throw up a barricade against you, and surround you and hem you in on every side, 44 and they will level you to the ground and your children within you, and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation.”

What are we seeing here?

Jesus lamenting how He longed to pull in and protect the City and His children. But that City and her people rejected Him. Jesus weeping, not for Himself, but for the City, His children, who because of spiritual blindness failed to recognize Him.

What did they see?

Business as usual. Herod’s remodeled temple. A formidable wall around their precious City. A confused man who had illusions of being God.

What did Jesus see?

A City, a people, His children, who if they were relatively young in 33AD, would be slaughtered 37 years later … some as they were pregnant. Why? Why did Jesus see this tragedy as He approached the cross? In His own words because “[they] did not recognize the time of [their] visitation”.

Imagine how things could have been different if they had known about and been anticipating their visitation? If they had welcomed Him as their Messiah … our Messiah? There would have been no need to falsely arrest Him, falsely accuse Him, falsely condemn Him. No need to torture Him. No need to murder Him.

Lord grant us clear vision for our next visitation.

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