|- Ray & Doris Prinzing -
"And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said: ...I shall see Him, but not now: I shall behold Him, but not nigh." [Numbers 24:15, 17a].
"―the promises, having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them." [Hebrews 11:13]. The scripture is clear that "where there is no vision, the people perish." [Proverbs 29:18]. Literally, the people are "naked," for our vision is our covering until we are swallowed up into the reality of its fulfillment. But we are also learning the tragedy of having a vision and then not progressing on to BECOME the fulfillment of that vision, but rather to get entangled in substitutes, and things of this world.
Our earnest prayer therefore is that we might have "open eyes" to see as God sees, of all that He hath prepared for them that love Him, and then to be progressively developed and prepared for its consummation. It is also self-evident that the opening of our eyes to see, is a progressive work Qf the holy Spirit. He reveals, quickens, unfolds according as He has also worked in us to prepare us for the reception of that vision, and then He imparts the ability to go on and become its fruition. "For it is God Himself whose power creates within you both the desire and the power to execute His gracious will." [Philippians 2:13, Weymouth].
The purpose of "seeing" looks toward BECOMING, not simply to satisfy a curiosity, or just to fill a present need. Seeing is knowing, and knowing is becoming. To see is to become what you see, for one is transformed into the same image of what he sees.
"And when the woman SAW that the tree was good for food.... she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat." [Genesis 3:6]. When Eve "saw" and then "partook" of her vision, she passed from one dimension into another, and was changed into a grossly material dimension of this flesh world. Then she gave to her husband, he also joined her in the vision and of its experience, "and the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked." [Genesis 3:7].
The vision was there, they saw, they entered into its experience and partook of the thing and thus became that thing, and then their eyes were opened to consider their new low state of existence. They might then have hated them-selves for what they now saw, but they could not help themselves because now they had become the fulfillment of their vision. Ah, she might have thought she knew what she was getting into, but through her experience her eyes were really opened, and she saw the situation for what it was― only it was too late, for Eve, along with Adam, had become what they saw.
How deceptive is the allure of the adversary of our soul, and we learn over and over again that "all that glitters is not gold." Even what appears to be a very spiritual realm, we find to our sorrow we do not like what we see, once we have become that thing. Hence the need to look only unto "Jesus, the Author and the Finisher of our faith," and to become what He is, for then alone shall we be satisfied.
In the book of Adam and Eve there are two very confirming passages, which we would share: And Adam said to Eve, "Look at thine eyes, and at mine, which afore beheld angels in heaven, praising; and they, too, without ceasing. But now we do not see as we did: our eyes have become of flesh; they cannot see in like manner as they saw before." [Adam and Eve 4:8-9]. Also, then God the Lord said unto Adam, "When thou wast under subjection to Me, thou hadst. a bright nature within thee, and for that reason couldst thou see things afar off. But after thy transgression thy bright nature was withdrawn from thee; and it was not left to thee to see things afar off, but only near at hand; after the ability of the flesh; for it is brutish." [Adam and Eve 8:2].
This was not an upward progression, but their vision being after the natural flesh realm, they lost their bright nature and become partakers of that which is brutish. They entered into a realm of death, the death of the carnal mind, to mind only the things of the flesh.
When God caused a deep sleep to come upon Adam, while He removed from him that chamber ( womb) out of which He fashioned Eve, we can say that the whole Adamic race went into a sleep from which it has not yet awakened. It was the sleep of death, i.e. the CARNAL MIND, to begin the minding of the things of the flesh. And so the challenge remains to this day, "Wherefore He saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light." [Ephesians 5:14]. Normally we would expect it to read, "And Christ shall give thee LIFE," for if one is dead, they would need an impartation of life. And yet we find that the usage of the word "light" is most correct here, for one is not physically dead, but when they are minding the flesh they are spiritually dead, that is, they are not living in the realm of His full spiritual life.
Thus the symbol is well taken to use sleep as a type of death. When one is asleep there is a thin veil of flesh, the eyelid, which closes down over the eye. And when we are spiritually dead there is a veil of flesh, i.e. flesh-consciousness which grips the mind, so that we cannot see clearly into the spiritual realm. Though one might try to see afar off, and clearly discern the things ahead, this flesh-consciousness is there to cloak the vision, and distort the sight, so that we do not rightly comprehend what we are trying to see. Only as the Spirit opens our eyes, and our mind is transformed, so that we mind the things of the Spirit, do we begin to comprehend things as they really are.
Thank God, there have been those occasions when it seems as if the veil has been drawn back a little, and we receive glimpses into the realms of reality in Christ. These rare "visions" begin to work in us, so that we might be purged, purified, and prepared for more sight. And how we groan as we find this heaviness of the veil of flesh still upon us, to blur and make hazy that which we would behold more clearly.
The carnal mind cannot see God! "The world was made by Him, but the world knew Him not. He came unto His own, and His own received Him not." [John 1:10-11]. They saw Him as a "man," but they could not see Him as God. In fact we even read, "Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory." [1 Corinthians 2:8].
Even His disciples, after walking with Him for three years, found it hard to look beyond the natural realm of the physical, so that "Philip saith unto Him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known Me, Philip ? He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father." [John 14:8-9].
How blind our eyes still are! We are so slow to perceive Him in any dimension beyond this flesh realm. Yet Paul writes, "Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we no more." [2 Corinthians 5:16]. Now it does not say that Jesus Christ no longer has a body which could be manifested on this earth plane, for He came forth from the tomb with a resurrected body which could be handled and seen. But it emphasizes that we are not to know Him after human standards of the flesh, but we are to know Him according to the Spirit, not just as man after the flesh, but as God. How hard it is for people to know THE GOD from the man; both as concerns our Lord Jesus Christ, and even His life, in each other.
The eyes of men are so accustomed to dual vision, especially to see both good and evil. We see evil, and we become evil. Would to God that we could see all GOOD, and thus become all good. Then with one eye we see the evil, and with one eye we see the good, and we try to focus our sight and harmonize it all together, and we end up with confusion, never quite sure which is the evil, and which is the good. And especially so, if what we thought was evil turns into good, and what we thought was good turns sour on us, and that leaves us all perplexed.
We mix up the flesh with the Spirit, and out of the confusion we try to make sense, but we have become what we saw, confusion personified. This is truly a state of Babylon, for Babylon means "confusion."
It is obvious that we have been far too sin-conscious, when we need to be much more GOD-CONSCIOUS, to see that which is good.
When Adam and Eve saw and partook of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, that is what they became, a mixture of good and evil, to thereafter birth this duality, Cain and Abel. Later we have an Isaac and Ishmael, a Jacob and Esau.
"When thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light." [Luke 11:34].
Yes, you become what you see! The more evil we see in one another, and then dwell upon it, talk about it, feed on the negative, the more evil we are guilty of becoming. Our eye becomes more negative, and then next time we see that person we'll see even more negative things in them. "Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things." [Romans 2:1].
In fact, we might even point out that oftentimes we simply manifest the "mirror principle." By that we mean what we would see in others is just a reflection of what actually is in us, but we heap the condemnation upon them, to pronounce them guilty. We see their faults, our negative vision beholds their sins. Suddenly the Spirit turns the light upon our own heart and we find that it was our own faults and evils which have beclouded our vision. Then the more the Spirit of God works in us to cleanse and purify, the more good we begin to see in our brethren, for there is a correction made in our vision, and we see that which is GOOD. We become what we see, and we see what we become!
So carnal, so full of darkness, so natural-minded has Christendom become, for they have looked long and hard after the world, now they say, "I am rich and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that they are wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked." And that is why we are counselled to "anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see." [Revelation 3:17-18].
Anointed to see ― see what? Certainly not just our wretched condition, for this will not change us, but that our eyes should behold our Saviour, and then to keep looking unto Him, for He is both the Author and the Finisher of our faith, and He will transform us.
And Moses said, "I will not now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush." [Exodus 3:3-4].
Moses was willing to take the time to TURN ASIDE, AND SEE. If we desire to become all-righteous, to become the fulfillment of our vision, then we are going to have to be willing to turn aside from everything else that we have been watching. When God saw that Moses would give attention to HIM, then God began to speak, to unfold a purpose and plan that utterly amazed and astounded Moses. God was revealed to Moses as "The I AM THAT I AM," namely, the God of revelation and redemption, even He who hath sworn by Himself to redeem His creation from the thralldom of sin and decay.
Praise God, little by little He has been turning us away from the world, that we might behold Him. A way from ourselves that we mjght behold Himself. True, we haven't always understood immediately the reason for all of the separations, the cutting off was painful to the natural man, it meant death to one realm, that we might become alive to another realm. The seclusion and aloneness was a trial, but it is essential that we be turned aside from everything else which would blur and distract our vision, if we would behold HIM in a new and living way, and then enter into the process of becoming the reality of our new vision.
Certainly God cannot impart to us, unveil the vision of the higher dimensions in Him, so long as we still have the allure of the world imprinted as stars upon our eyes. The transition, to focus our eyes upon Him has been a process, it is not an instant revelation complete. True, the fresh glimpses come suddenly, as a burst of .light, but we do not yet fully see.
One experience, one revelation does not constitute completeness. We cannot suddenly make it all past tense, "old things have passed away, and behold, all things are new." Indeed, more correct to state, OLD THINGS ARE PASSING AWAY, and all things are BECOMING new. Thus the words of a chorus become very precious to us:
Little by little He's changing me,
Line upon line He is changing me,
Precept by precept until I am free,
Jesus, my Lord, is changing me.
"In Thy light shall we see light." [Psalms 36:9]. One cannot walk in the darkness of this world, and still expect to see the verities of our God. Now it is true, we are still living in the world, faced with its daily problems, frustrations and pressures. How then are we to see with HIS light in the course of daily living? Paul writes, "For God, Who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (Therefore) we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us." [2 Corinthians 4:6-7]. There is a LIGHT WITHIN, it abides there, and if we walk by the inner light of His indwelling Spirit we see things in an entirely different manner, than if we walked on in the darkness of the carnal mind.
Jesus said, "I speak that which I have seen with My Father: and ye do that which ye have seen with your father." [John 8:38]. There were those of whom He said, "ye are of your father the devil," for they had looked upon the evil for so long, and seeing evil they became evil, and then all of their actions followed as a manifestation of their state of being. On the other hand, Jesus became what He saw, His eyes were upon the Father, to become the fulfillment of the Father's will, and it is self-evident that all of His works manifested His righteous state of being.
Many a man saw a vision, as expressed through some person who became their ideal, and they were captivated by what they saw, and became another image of that person, and often did great deeds in the process. What they saw they became, whether it be good or bad, depending on the object of their vision. We look to see how others act, and then we follow their example. O to see Jesus, and to become LIKE HIM.
Some Greeks came to Philip one day with the request, "Sir, we would see Jesus." [John 12:21]. Philip passed the request on to Andrew, and together they tell Jesus of the desire of these certain Greeks who desired to see Him. Jesus gave what appears to be a very strange answer, and yet the only one which He could give, "Verily , verily, I say unto you, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." [John 12:24]. Perhaps the Greeks went away disappointed, at least their curiosity was not satisfied. Jesus was not on exhibition to fill a curiosity need, and it takes the opening of the "inner eye" to really see Him.
But there is another thought included here. Around the world people could ask, "We would see Jesus!" But He cannot be everywhere on the natural plane at once. However, if HE WAS REPRODUCED INTO MANY, all of the same image, the manifestation could be multiplied many times over. Hence, Jesus was really telling His disciples that there was a way in which HE could become MANY, and furthermore, if they also were identified with that process, they would not have to relay the message to Him, but they, themselves, could become His manifestation to men. The thought is staggering, and yet 80 true, for we read of how that "saviours" shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mount of Esau; and the kingdom shall be the Lord's." [Obadiah 21].
Here is the PURPOSE for our BECOMING, and into Whose image we are to become, even as we have often sung:
"0 to be like Thee, 0 to be like Thee,
Blessed Redeemer, pure as Thou art,
Come in Thy sweetness, Come in Thy fulness,
Stamp Thine own image deep on my heart."
If it is HIS IMAGE which is stamped upon us, or, shall we say, into whose likeness we become, then when people would look at us, who do they really see? "And all of us, as with unveiled face, (because we) continued to behold (in the Word of God) as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord Who is the Spirit." [2 Corinthians 3: 18, Amplified].
God spoke to Israel concerning how much He had shown them, saying, "I have shewed thee new things from this time, even hidden things, and thou didst not know them. They are created now, and not from the beginning; even before the day when thou heardest them not; lest thou shouldest say, Behold, I knew them." [Isaiah 48:6-7]. Bringing forth new things, a rare vision concealed from ages past, reserved for this very day― but seeing they saw not, so He went on to say, "Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction." [Isaiah 48:10].
Ah, how our vision is changed when we are cast into the furnace of affliction. Things we once thought so important to look upon become so insignificant, while things which once were even unknown to us now begin to fill our life with their glory. The Cross cancels out the grossly material dimension, and make way for a glimpse into the spiritual realm.
Far too long we have been on the merry-go-round of seeing evil and becoming the same, and then birthing after our own kind. We desire to have this degenerative process reversed, and a regeneration begin to sweep over the earth. Then it is essential that there be a NEW REVELATION, of truth and righteousness, a vision which we can become, and which will satisfy. Jesus Christ is that vision to us, and dare we say, when we have become ONE IN HIM, we shall become that vision to the world. Thus, "the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God." [Romans 8:19]. Praise the name of the Lord!
"And in that day shall the deaf hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out of obscurity, and out of darkness." [Isaiah 29:18]. A new light shall shine upon those who sit in the land of the shadow of death. The good news of the kingdom shall be preached with clarity, and as the vision is quickened within the heart of the hearer, they too, will begin to become part of the NEW creation in Christ Jesus.
Job had confidence beyond all present processes, and time, so he could say, "Yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another." [Job 19:26-27]. Hearsay accounts passed on by another will not suffice, there needs to be a personal revelation of the Lord, and there was progress in his experience, for later he declared: "I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth Thee." [Job 42:5]. How did he see Him? By the inner eye of the spirit, a revelation filled his being which brought changes, healing, and new life. The more he saw of this blessed realm, the more he became of the same, until his life overflowed with its victory.
"Thine eyes shall see the king in His beauty." [Isaiah 33:17].
"Beloved, now are we the children of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him as He is." [1 John 3:2].
Cycle after cycle, process after process, the Cross working ever deeper within to cancel out the old vision of self, while a new light fills the inner being, and we are changed. "The righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith." [Romans 1:17]. Every new ray of light must bring its corresponding change if we are to be ready for the next revelation. But if the light that is in thee becomes darkness, then we are not prepared to receive additional light, until that which has turned us negative be corrected, and once again our steps are turned towards HIM. Yes, it is certain, we become what we see. Let me see Jesus only, only He can satisfy.
TO SEE-AND BECOME
How dual has been all our vision,
Beholding both evil and good,
With eyes not accustomed to seeing
Spiritual realms as they should.
For we have been conscious of evil,
And focused our minds on its way,
Not realizing we were becoming
Far, far too much of its prey.
For what e'er it is that man seeth,
The same he is sure to become,
No wonder he's filled with frustration
When evil and good are the sum.
May God turn our eyes by His Spirit
To see only that which is pure,
No more the beholding corruption-
The world with its fleshly allure.
But eyes that to God are directed,
Our body to fill with His light,
Transformed by His grace, and becoming
Loosed from the shadows of night.
O God, may our vision be single,
To see Thee in all of our ways,
To pass here our time of sojourning
Becoming Thy vessel of praise.
From glory to glory progressing,
As Thy Spirit helps us to see
Beyond all the things that are passing,
To know Thy blessed reality.
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