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Monday, October 25, 2010

Picture Perfect

And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as a dead man. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades. Revelation 1:17, 18 (New American Standard Bible)

The name of Jesus is blasphemed more than any other name in history. One never hears the name Buddha, Gandhi or Swedenborg used in vain. Hollywood is particularly accountable of profaning the Only Begotten Son’s holy name. But do those who misuse His name and title truly understand of whom they speak? The apostle John was given a personal glimpse of Christ as He is now. I believe if people took the time to see the reality of the Glory of Jesus they would think twice about uttering His name in vain. Revelation 1:12-18 gives the most specific and beautifully stunning picture of the physical Jesus we’ve ever had.

The long robe and golden sash He wears were part of the priestly attire of the high priests God instructed Moses to make in the wilderness (Exodus 28:4). Jesus is our High Priest who is constantly interceding for us to our heavenly Father. His whiter than white hair corresponds to the complete holiness and eternity of the Ancient of Days (Daniel 7:13, John 17:5). His eyes blazing like fire indicate His piecing judgment of sin. His feet glowing like brass in a furnace speak of sacrifice for sin and the heavenly pronouncement against it. His voice as rushing waters speaks of His great power. Holding the seven stars (churches) in His hand show His sovereign possession. The sword coming out of His mouth, based on a weapon of that day, speaks of His role as Judge. The gladius was a doubled edged sword used by the Romans in a slicing/stabbing action designed to kill. He is no longer the helpless babe of Bethlehem but the mightiest King and Sovereign Lord of the entire universe. Shining like the sun expresses the highest glory.

It is understandable that John was so overcome with fear he fell down and couldn’t move. The surprise is this Mighty King who holds all this power and authority laid His right hand on him and said “Don’t be afraid.” In this day and age when the name and person of Jesus Christ is mocked, maligned and slandered it does good to revisit the account of who He really is and will be for eternity. Surely His mighty power astonishes yet His love and touch is tender, affecting and emotionally stirring. He is so much more than the world gives Him credit for. Jesus, seen in all His glory is a sight that awes. Truly one picture is worth a thousand words.