Behold is not a word we hear a lot nowadays. Occasionally in a moment of surprise or of sudden change we might hear the phrase, ‘Low and behold,’ but if we heard it in everyday language, we would think someone had arrived from another age.

Behold is such an amazing word.  It means ‘observing someone or something, especially of remarkable nature, pay close attention to what is to follow.’ To watch, survey, stare at, perceive, discern, set your eyes on, contemplate, and look intently.

In the King James Version of the Bible, it is used many times. Sadly, in later translations, it is hardly used at all.  Very often it was used at very significant times in the lives of people and in the journey of the Israelites as a nation.

Moses had a Behold moment at the burning bush that changed the destiny of nations. The prophet Isaiah had a Behold moment when he prophesied the coming of the Messiah.  Mary had a Behold moment when the angel told her she would give birth to the Saviour of the world.  John the Baptist had a Behold moment when he announced the coming of the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

All of them were observing ‘someone or something, especially of remarkable nature from which they paid close attention to what followed.’

In the story of Jesus as written by John, he writes, “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us and we Beheld His Glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”

Throughout the ministry of Jesus, His glory was revealed by His words, His actions, His death on a cross, His resurrection and His ascension back to heaven.

When Jesus performed His first miracle at a wedding, John says, “This beginning of signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee and manifested His Glory; and His disciples believed in Him” John 2:11. (NKJV)  The story of the death of Lazarus, was a human tragedy that enabled Jesus to say to Martha, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you will see the glory of God.” John 11:40 (NKJV).  In the story of the transfiguration the disciple Peter writes, “For He (Jesus) received from God the Father honour and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: This is My beloved Son in whom I am well pleased.” 2 Peter 1:17 (NKJV).

All these and countless more, Beheld His Glory even though it was veiled under external poverty and deep humility in obedience to His Father. The religious people of His day always wanted to associate Jesus with His natural roots, the carpenter’s son, from Nazareth, Galilee, but He lived in the Glory of the Father.  People Beheld His glory because He lived supernaturally in the natural world.

To those who believed, His Glory was revealed by His power, wisdom, knowledge, holiness, truth and grace.  It is still the same today.  You and I can Behold His Glory; through His death, resurrection, ascension and the coming of His Holy Spirit, we can Behold His glory in the life of a person ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven. We can Behold His glory as we look at the magnificence of this world and the universe He created, we can see something of His glory as we look at the miracle of a new-born baby created by God.  As the Psalmist says, “Fearfully and wonderfully made.”  Psalm 139:14 (NKJV.

Today, you are invited to Behold someone, especially of remarkable nature.  Christ Jesus the Son of God.  Look, stare, look intently.  You may have been a follower of Jesus over many years, you may have heard His name as a curse or swear word. Today, by reading this article, God is giving you another chance to receive His life, His power, His peace, His wisdom, His knowledge, His holiness, His truth and grace as you Behold His Glory.

As we do that, let us remember the second part of the meaning of the word Behold.  Pay close attention to what is to follow.  As together we repent (turn) from the things that separate us from God and turn to Him, as in faith we believe and trust Him in our everyday circumstances be they difficult or be they good, we will begin to Behold His glory and with great anticipation - watch what will follow.     

 

 Ian Cole is the founder of the World Prayer Centre and connects across the globe with other ministries with a passion for prayer.

Beholding His Glory is the title of our next annual prayer conference in March 2020.  To book your space, click the image below.