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Glimpses of God2

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Glimpses of God


I John 3:1-3


I Corinthians 13:12

II Corinthians 3:18

Matthew 5:8

Psalm 27:8

Outline I John 3:1-3

  1. See what kind of love
    1. The Father has given to us

                                                               i.      That we should be called children of God

1.      And so we are

                                                             ii.      The reason why the world does not know us

1.      Is that it did not know Him

  1. Beloved
    1. We are God’s children now

                                                               i.      And what we will be has not yet appeared

                                                             ii.      But we know that when He appears

1.      We shall be like Him

a.       Because

                                                                                                                                       i.      We shall see Him as He is

2.      And everyone

a.       Who thus hopes in Him

                                                                                                                                       i.      Purifies himself

1.      As He is pure

1. God’s love to us is great

2. The world does not know God

3. We are God’s Children NOW

4. When He appears we shall be like Him because we will see Him as He is

5. Everyone who hopes in God purifies himself

  1. God’s love to us is great
    1. “See what kind of love the father has given us.”

                                                               i.      See what, behold, or better yet, “just take a look at this love”

Have you ever seen two guys standing on a sidewalk and a perfectly restored and customized car from their youth drives by? One at least will make an exclamation, point and begin to note the cool points of the car. Just take a look at that!

It is amazing to think about the things that we can get all worked up over.

The love of God is worthy of a greater attention from us than that!

As we think about “the kind of love the Father has given us, we may see that,

1.      It is a glorious and sublime love

a.       God’s love should amaze us

                                                                                                                                       i.      A glorious thing is something to behold that does not get old or commonplace, we never tire of looking at it.

b.      Sublime

                                                                                                                                       i.      Elevated, high, pure

2.      It is a love of quality and quantity

a.       A love that was extended to us when we were still sinners, and will continue throughout eternity a love that was poured into our hearts … amazingly full, comprehensive and complete, a perfect love!

b.      A love that sent God’s son to pay the price for our sin.

c.       Amazing, the love of God!

3.      When we see this love properly we sink down in adoration before it.

a.       We need to comprehend this love

                                                                                                                                       i.      It is to be considered, dwelt upon and contemplated

                                                                                                                                     ii.      It should become a part of our mental life, to see what kind of love, the Father has given us.

1.      We have busy minds, it is amazing the amount of information we process in a day or even in an hour. How much brainpower do we have dedicated to viewing the love of God that we might fully and properly adore God?

2.      Do we have a few brain cycles that we could use in the pursuit of God rather than the pursuit of sin?

b.      We need to respond to this love of God.

                                                                                                                                       i.      It is not a ho hum run of the mill kind of thing. It should excite every part of our being.

Do you remember being so thoroughly in love that you wanted to even just catch a glimpse of the one you loved? And then get closer?

We need to have that kind of desire for God and so respond to the love that he has given to us.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      We need to revere the one who gives us this love.

                                                                                                                                    iii.      We need to live in the light of this love.

4.      In this fellowship all is one-sided

a.       God gives, we only receive in gratitude.

Great is the love of God to us!

  1. The world does not know God
    1. We are told, “The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know Him.”

                                                               i.      “The world has only fictional, false conceptions regarding our Father and regarding us, His children.”

                                                             ii.      This also means that we are identifiable as children of God. It is because of identification with God that we are not known.

1.      Understand that there is a family of sinners and that sinners love company.

a.       They are happy to draw others into sin and to prompt each other on to greater acts of disobedience and debauchery. (They would not call it that, they would say that they are being open, that they are being sophisticated, that they are being modern)

b.      There is an identity that is part of the fraternity of sin, if you have it you are in, if it is missing you are out, nothing else matters. (Talk about being open minded)

                                                            iii.      We need to understand how the world works.

1.      This is God instructing us and as it were calling us to remember other things he has said. Think about what Proverbs says.

2.      This is so that we are not discouraged in befriending the world. We need to persist like God did in extending grace mercy and love to us.

3.      We need to know that a definitive walk with God will not be a great thing in the eyes of the world so we must not look for kudos from the world.

The world does not know God, but praise be to God that He knows his children and such are we if we have believed in the blood of Christ which cleanses us from all sin.

  1. We are God’s children NOW
    1.  “The Christian condition, now and eternally, centers in the fact of being children of God. In that fact lies the germ of all possibilities of eternal life.”

                                                               i.      Our identity gives us hope

    1. We are presently God’s children. That means that here and now if we are made new by the blood of Christ we are the children of God.

                                                               i.      We do not wait for identification with God

1.      It is not like making application for a license or a building permit with the government.

                                                             ii.      We are not working up to full identity with God.

1.      We are now fully in the family of God. The work has been done for us.

                                                            iii.      “Jesus’ teachings begin with real people who live in a real world. All these people, the best and worst alike, are imperfect in God’s sight (and if they are honest, in their own sight as well). Their only hope is in God’s certain mercy. Those who trust in God’s mercy have no need of magical formulas, mystical experiences or withdrawal from society. Instead they are in the world and doing good. They feed the poor, they give the thirsty something to drink, they invite the stranger in, they cloth the naked, they care for the sick, and they visit those who are in prison (the kinds without bars as well as the places for criminals). … Jesus Christ’s is the path of life.” (Jesus in a New Age Dalai Lama World)

We are God’s children NOW! Let us live in the reality of our present position in the family of God!

  1. When He appears we shall be like Him because we will see Him as He is
    1. Scottish paraphrase                                                                i.      “High is the rank we now possess, but higher we shall rise”

                                                             ii.      “Though what we shall hereafter be, is hid from mortal eyes”

1.      Now we are the children of God in the world, then we shall dwell in glory in the presence of God.

    1. Two things from this verse

                                                               i.      “Now what we will be has not yet appeared”

1.      We have not been told or shown everything.

a.       God gives us what we need when we need it. We must be content, even fulfilled with what has been portioned out to us at this time.

                                                                                                                                       i.      God gives to us a gourmet meal perfectly suited to our needs. As far as our needs are concerned we do not get super sized at McDonalds. We are fed the best at the appropriate time.

b.      God is proactive parent. He is actively guiding, instructing, disciplining, loving, protecting and challenging his children.

                                                                                                                                       i.      It is not wise to give a toddler a razor sharp hunting knife. Can you see the picture?

1.      God withholds and gives as he sees fit.

2.      He does for us what is the best for us.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      God has a plan and a goal for this world and the individuals that live in it.

                                                                                                                                    iii.      His timing is perfect, His knowledge is complete. His revelation will come at the appropriate time!

                                                             ii.      “We shall be like Him”

1.      This much has been given to us by God. We know with certainty that we will be like Him when we see Him as He is.

a.       We will not be equal to Him

b.      We will be glorified

c.       “There is no stage of existence beyond being “children of God” to which we will be raised at the time of Christ’s coming.” (Lenski)

                                                                                                                                       i.      This is a great explanation of the case before us since it at once sets our expectation and also presents our hope. And that would be to experience glorification as children of God.

We will see Him and we will be like Him, praise be to God for the gift of new life in Christ and the hope of being with Him!

  1. Everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself
    1. Hope in God leads to a desire to be like God                                                                i.      What is the likeness that is presented to us?

1.      2 Corinthians 7:1, “Since we have these promises, beloved,  let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.”

2.      I Peter 1:13-16, “ Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written,  “You shall be holy, for I am holy.””

3.      Pure as God is pure

a.       The knowledge that we are given about our future gives us an ethical perspective to live expectantly and carefully.

                                                                                                                                       i.      It is no burden for the child of God to live a godly life. It is what he has been saved for.

b.      The by-product of resurrection hope is godly living. (From Robert Reymond)

God’s hope leads to godly living.

  1. I would like to return to the fourth point (When He appears we shall be like Him because we will see Him as He is) and take a look at another aspect of it as a conclusion.

I John 3:1-3

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. 3 And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.”

2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.

I Corinthians 13:12

“For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

    1. The title of this message is Glimpses of God and I wanted look at the idea of seeing God.

                                                               i.      From these verses we understand that we will see God as He is only in glory.

1.      In my mind comes the idea of seeing fully, clearly, undistorted and in full light.

a.       We need to remember the place we are in and understand that God has ordered our lives.

                                                                                                                                       i.      This is not the place where we will see God fully, but we look forward to that day and that place where we shall see God fully.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      In the future is when we will see God as he is.

                                                             ii.      The beginning of the third chapter of first John starts with the word “see”. This is then followed by what we see, “what kind of love the Father has given to us”

1.      I would suggest that the Father’s love that we “see” is a glimpse of God.

a.       Glimpse

                                                                                                                                       i.      A brief, incomplete view or look.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      Archaic A brief flash of light.

1.      Think about arc welding and the lens that is used and imagine a brighter light.

                                                            iii.      I Corinthians 13:12 says, “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

1.      Calvin comments

a.       “He does not indeed, say, that there is no seeing of God now; but as Paul says, ‘We see now through a glass darkly’ But he elsewhere makes a difference between this way of living, and the seeing of the eye. In short God now presents himself to be seen by us, not such as he is, but such as we can comprehend.”

                                                           iv.      There are places where we see God

1.      The bible presents to us glimpses of God.

a.       It describes Him

                                                                                                                                       i.      God is holy, Psalm 99:1

                                                                                                                                     ii.      God is a fortress, Psalm 46:1

                                                                                                                                    iii.      I John 4:7, God is love

                                                                                                                                   iv.      God is a righteous judge, Psalm 7:11

                                                                                                                                     v.      God is faithful, 2Cor 1:8

                                                                                                                                   vi.      God is mighty, Job 36:5

                                                                                                                                  vii.      God is light, 1John 1:5

                                                                                                                                viii.      God is merciful, Psalm 116:5

b.      We see glimpses of God

                                                                                                                                       i.      In the presentation of His person

                                                                                                                                     ii.      In the description of His will

2.      Creation presents to us glimpses of God

a.       Seeing His power that still baffles scientific man

                                                                                                                                       i.      Man cannot control the oceans

                                                                                                                                     ii.      He cannot control the wind and the rain

b.      Seeing the amazing plan in His creation

                                                                                                                                       i.      How it works together

1.      God’s creation is incredibly complex and integrated.

                                                                                                                                     ii.      How it differs

1.      Look for and note the distinctions in creation.

                                                                                                                                    iii.      How dependant it is

c.       Seeing the beauty of His handiwork

                                                                                                                                       i.      Great visual art is a copy of the handiwork of God

                                                                                                                                     ii.      What we see can speak words to our being about majesty, immenseness, our size, and infinity to name a few examples.

3.      The sacraments present to us glimpse of God

a.       The sending of His Son

                                                                                                                                       i.      God’s love

b.      The sacrifice of His Son

                                                                                                                                       i.      God provides

c.       The provision for relationship with God

                                                                                                                                       i.      God of reconciliation

4.      God’s people show us glimpses of God

a.       As they walk in the truth

                                                                                                                                       i.      We see the reality of God

1.      We see the guiding hand of God

2.      We see the directing influence of God

3.      We see the effect of God

b.      As they love one another

                                                                                                                                       i.      We see in practical ways the love of God

c.       As they serve the family of God

                                                                                                                                       i.      We see before us a foretaste of heaven

1.      People dwelling together in unity

2.      People living out the life that God has set before them.

d.      As they serve the world

                                                                                                                                       i.      God’s mission is presented to us

                                                             v.      Considerations from this list

1.      We need to see God

a.       In His Word

b.      In the lives of others

c.       In our own thoughts, attitudes and actions

d.      In the world that we live in

2.      I am convinced that I am not God centered in my life.

a.       When was the last time we learned something new about God?

                                                                                                                                       i.      Something truly new?

                                                                                                                                     ii.      Something that we had forgotten?

b.      When was the last time we looked for God?

                                                                                                                                       i.      To confronted by Him?

                                                                                                                                     ii.      To be consumed by Him?

                                                                                                                                    iii.      To be challenged by Him?

                                                                                                                                   iv.      To be comforted by Him?

Let us as God’s people become more consumed with Him as we grow in faith.

We need to see God with enthusiasm and desire.

If we see God we will leave ourselves in His care and worship Him

We need to fellowship with God’s people to catch a glimpse of God. We need to look at each other with the anticipation of seeing God in our brother.

Take communion with the expectation of seeing God. Do we understand what the body and blood of Christ mean to us and the life that we live and the hope that we have? Do we glimpse God as we take the bread and the cup?

Have we seen a glimpse of God lately?

I John 3:2

2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.

I Corinthians 13:12

“For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

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