“That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:” —Ephesians 1:17
Oh, Lord! may this prayer that the apostle prayed for the saints in Ephesus be a prayer that You indeed answer for us. May we be given the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. We ask You, heavenly Father, that our hearts be moved with an earnest desire and passion to know You and to be reconciled more completely with You.
The total depravity of our fallen nature runs so thoroughly into every aspect of a sinner’s life that we have a great propensity to settle for that which falls short of what is far better, far greater, and far more glorious for God’s sake. Each one of us must be arrested by the convicting work of the Holy Spirit so that we might acknowledge the truth that we often stop short of where we should be.
The revelation of Jesus Christ, according to His blessed Word, should overturn our souls. Even as a mature saint, while on the Isle of Patmos, John turned to see the risen and ascended Christ and he fell at Christ’s feet as a dead man (Revelation 1:17). If we have truly received the revelation of Jesus Christ, by God’s grace and the power of His Spirit, we could do nothing but fall down in abject surrender, in brokenness and humility, with contrition and repentance; because the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ is so infinitely magnificent and majestic in His deity, and His excellence and perfection is so superlative in His humanity, that no created being could approach unto Him except it be by His grace alone.
We are so sinful, though we are saved by His amazing grace, that we rarely give a thought to the fact that the humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ is so blessed in excellencies, so perfect in all performance, so pure in every thought and decision, that we need grace upon grace from God just to have a glimpse of that revelation. The best of all we do, by God’s grace, will never attain to Christ’s excellent glory as a man! How foolhardy we must be to think that we are something of recognition, something of boastfulness, and something worthy of reward.
Therefore, if I am fixed on holiness in myself, if you are fixated on holiness in yourself; or righteousness; or goodness; or virtue; it will only lead to an unholy obsession, lifting up the virtue of man as an idol in our hearts. Please don’t misunderstand. Yes, a man who is truly saved by God’s grace grows in that grace wherein we stand and is strengthened in faith as he matures; and that will happen if we are fixed upon Christ, if we seek to be ever reconciled to God, desiring to see Christ in greater glory revealed, for that vision will lay us bear before God and humble us in simplicity before all men.
When we see Christ for who He truly is, even if only by the perfection of His humanity, we can walk openly and honestly before God and men, without pretense. In the brilliance of His light, we see ourselves for what we truly are: vile and wretched, and apart from His grace, worthy of nothing short of eternal torment for every sin committed, every righteous deed omitted, and every thought that failed to give God glory.
May the revelation of the knowledge of Christ be our desire; may it be our prayer; and may God have mercy upon us to make it so in our lives so that He may answer that prayer for His great glory.