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Day 6: Face-to-face with the Future

August 16, 2018

1Today my Bible Doctrines classes huddled into teams of four and worked on a group  project.  By Wednesday they will have created ten Powerpoint slides and will present a team speech on the subject of Heaven.   We’ve been studying this doctrine for almost a week and it’s time the students become teachers and tell me what this celestial afterlife is all about according to the Scriptures.

This is Revelation 21:4 stuff.  No more pain.  No more sorrow.  No more death.

This is Matthew 13:44 truth.  A treasure so fantastic that you’ll give everything you have in order to obtain it.

This is John 14 reality.  Jesus has gone to prepare it for us and He’ll come back for us when He completes this New Heaven and New Earth. This is Jesus, the Kingdom-creator.  So much more than a middle-school storybook cartoon character with whom many students seem to be satisfied.

The Powerpoint presentations are not only for class display and grading, as I told them, but for their permanent use.  After the speech each student is free to download his presentation to use in the future, as he speaks to churches, youth groups, Bible studies and adult gatherings wherever he goes in the years to come.  This will be part of his personal library.

Scripture and pictures of God’s home base.  God’s headquarters.

The biggest thing growing out of all of this Heaven study is the truth that it’s more than stupendous scenery and incredible loving friendships.  The biggest, most mysterious joy of Heaven is that we will see God in His glory.  

Some weeks back I was shopping and someone came up behind me and started speaking.  As I turned with a puzzled expression they apologized.  “Oh, I’m sorry,” they stammered.  “From the back I thought you were someone else.”

When they were looking at my back they had a limited understanding of who I was.

In a spiritual sense, that was the way things were in the First Testament.  In Exodus chapter 33 Moses desired – so desired – to see God’s glory.  God allowed this by giving Moses a limited view, just of His back.  That was stunning, but still limited.  The Second Testament showed us that in seeing Jesus we see so much more, but I am being made aware that many students are still stuck in the Exodus 33 mode.  They had at one time been given a perfunctory view of God – maybe through weak teaching or an indifferent church or distracted parents – and their view of His glory is very limited.

In a sense, they’ve only seen His back.

It’s no wonder why we don’t see more of an excited interest in pursuing His glory.  Many students don’t even realize the face-to-face encounter of the glory of God once they see and experience the risen Savior.   Their perception is of a passive God who is walking away from them – He’s got better things to do.

How different to come into the realization of the Gospel truth and see the God-man sitting along the well in no hurry, to answer the question of an outcast woman so that she may know the truth.  This same glorious Savior reclined at a wedding feast to mingle and laugh.  He walked along a stretch of road to Emmaus and patiently explained, discussed and elaborated on the new awakening of salvation due to the Resurrection.  He was in no hurry.  He was face to face.  Every encounter led to a changed life.

In Exodus 33 Moses saw the back parts. Today we have the privilege see the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ, as Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:4. We see the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ and I am seeing some of my students slowly coming to this awakening as we study.

As we continue to research it gets better.  We are studying the future.  Our future, really.  The ones who have given their lives to Christ.  We’ll have an even more personal encounter with God.

Just as Paul says in 1 Corinthians 13:12 “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face.”  Can you imagine getting into that close range with Christ?

No more back part.  No more limited viewing.

1 John 3:2  “…we will see Him as He is.”

I can see the interest building in the future Kingdom.  I can see some eyes opening to the eternal perspective.

I will keep you in touch.

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  1. Such a blessing to see how our future generations of Christ committed followers are in such good hands. Lord’s blessings to you.

  2. Reblogged this on Ad Infinite-item and commented:
    Future Christ Jesus disciples are hiding in plain sight being nurtured by teachers who are also hiding in plain sight. All brought into plain sight by He Who we shall praise for ever and ever!

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