This week we are just going to cover the Preface of We Would See Jesus. It’s all so good!! I have been exceedingly blessed by reading it again. I hope you are able to get your hands on a copy! Roy begins by discussing how easy it is to focus on making certain “aspects” of the Christian life “work,” such as revival, joy, peace, fellowship, etc. He goes on to explain the danger of this mindset by saying, “If we concentrate on trying to make certain aspects of things ‘work,’ it will become a formula for us and will only lead us into bondage.”
How many of us have fallen into this trap before? I will be the first to raise my hand! I can’t tell you the amount of “To-do lists” I have made for myself at different times in my life with the hope that by following them, I would conquer a certain inner struggle I was facing. I know that discipline and action steps are good things that can definitely help, but ultimately they cannot give us victory. As my father, Wayne Barber, used to say all the time when quoting Roy Hession, “Victory is not me overcoming sin, it is Jesus overcoming me!”
For the rest of this study, we must put our “To-do lists” aside and concentrate on what it means to see Jesus for who He really is. “It is enough to see Jesus and to go on seeing Him. As we do so, we shall see everything else we need to see even as we need to see it, and all in its right relationship to Him who must ever be for us the center.”
Roy mentions two words used frequently in the book and explains their meaning. The first word is “grace.” He says, “grace is not a blessing or an influence from God which we receive, but rather an attribute of God which governs His attitude to man, and it can be defined as the undeserved love and favor of God….The moment we have to do something to make ourselves more acceptable to God, or the moment we have to have a certain feeling or attribute of character in order to be blessed by God, then grace is no longer grace” (see Romans 11:6 ).
The second word used frequently in the book is “revival.” Most of us think of revival in a corporate sense, a mighty movement of God that sweeps across a people. Roy challenges us, however, to see the word “revival” in a very individual, personal way. He says that revival is “the work of God which He does firstly in the lives of believers. This work is both personal and immediate for each believer who recognizes the decline there has been in his Christian experience, who bows to the dealings of God with him, and who sees Jesus as all he needs and believingly apprehends Him as such.” He goes on to say, “It is plain then, that our first responsibility is to be revived ourselves, and to give our testimony to those around us. We can then trust God to fit us and the life He is giving us into whatever corporate movement of His Spirit that He pleases.”
We know that we cannot see Jesus apart from His Word! Here are some things to meditate on throughout this week.
- Day 1: According to Psalm 119:25 and Psalm 119:107, how does God revive us?
- Day 2: Read Isaiah 57:15 and Psalm 51:17. What kind of heart is ready for revival?
- Day 3: What do Psalm 86:5, Psalm 130:7 and Lamentations 3:32 say about God’s character?
- Day 4: Read Acts 4:33, 2 Corinthians 1:5 and 1 Timothy 1:14. What do these NT passages say about God’s grace and comfort?
- Day 5: Lastly, read 2 Kings 6:8-23 and John 9. Record what you learn about Elisha praying that God would open his servant’s eyes in 2 Kings, and Jesus healing the blind man in John 9. Are there any truths from these passages that would relate to seeing Jesus for who He truly is? What do you learn about spiritual blindness?
As you reflect on His Word this week, prayerfully answer the following questions.
- In what ways have you tried to make the Christian life “work” in your own strength? How did this make you feel?
- Do you feel a longing in your heart for personal revival? If so, take some time to pray and ask God that He would open your eyes to see Jesus afresh and anew!
“We would see Jesus, this is all we’re needing; Strength, joy, and willingness come with the sight; We would see Jesus, dying, risen, pleading; Then welcome day, and farewell mortal night.”