Deprived of His Face

Why do we deprive ourselves of so great a privilege and blessing?

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. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.

  - 1 John 3.2, 3

Such is the beauty and radiance of his face that if all the souls in hell were to gaze upon the radiance of his face, they would not notice the suffering and punishment and torture of hell. Such is the sanctity of his form, that whoever gazed upon his face would be unable to commit a sin thereafter.

  - In Tenga Bithnua, Irish, 9th century

This is the great motivating hope of the Christian: One day we will see Jesus face to face.

We will be made completely like Him, in His image, but according to the form of our own glorified flesh and personality. We will be like Him and will live with Him in a community of untold multitudes who, even in all their combined glory and personalities, will not exhaust the infinite beauty and wonder of the Lord Jesus.

The horror of hell will be that complete lack of access to the Lord, an eternal condemnation of nothing else to observe, nothing else to know but the most wretched and vicious of unrepentant sinners bent only on their own interests, but without the ability to fulfill them.

How much do we care about the eternal destiny of the lost people around us, who will be deprived of the face of Jesus forever?

And what about us? Look around at the believers you know; look at yourself. Can you say that we are a people who are purifying ourselves as Jesus is pure? Do we seem to you to be the kind of people who are daily revived and strengthened by beholding the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4.6)? Are we striving day by day to bring holiness to completion in the fear of God (2 Cor. 7.1)?

Or are we as a body of believers merely coasting along, secure in what we expect will be our eternal destiny, but unwilling to take up discipline, strive against sin, labor for the Kingdom, or bear witness to the lost?

Should we, who expect to see Jesus face to face forever, deprive ourselves of His face and glory here and now?

If so, in what sense can we claim to know this Jesus, or to hope one day to see Him as He is? If this is indeed our hope, ought we not, as John explains, strive day by day to be more like Him, even now?  

It is time – every day – to make better use of our time for becoming more like Jesus (Eph. 5.15-17). Let us, brethren, examine ourselves, our motives, and the activities which define us in every area of our lives. And let us lay hold on, and live more fully within, the hope of glory, of one day seeing Jesus as He is, face to face.

And let us remember, as we do, all those around us whose course in life at present will see them deprived of that privilege and blessing forever and ever.

Psalm 90.12-15, 16, 17 (Landas: “My Faith Has Found a Resting Place”)
So teach us all our days to note that wisdom may be ours.
Return, O Lord, have pity on those servants who are Yours.
Each morning let Your love appear that we for joy may sing.
And make us glad for every day You us affliction bring.

Now let Your work to us appear; our children show Your might.
And let Your favor rest on us; show mercy in Your sight.
The work that You have given us, confirm, and to us show,
That we Your chosen path may walk and in Your precepts go.

Lord, move me to seek You more earnestly day by day!

An Ailbe Community Challenge

Where does it go, the time of our lives? Time is God’s most precious gift, and if we aren’t using it for the glory of King Jesus, how will we explain that to Him when we see Him face to face? Write to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I’ll send you a free brochure to help you discover how you might make better use of the time of your life. The worksheet, “The Time of Your Life,” can help you analyze, categorize, and begin to discover a better way of thinking about the time God gives you each day. It’s free. Just write me and ask for “The Time of Your Life.”

T. M. Moore, Principal
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in Essex Junction, VT. 

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