Bottom line . . . I like the word “behold” better than the word “see.” I know the word behold literally means to see but, at least in my mind, beholding something is far more than just seeing something. Beyond just observing, to behold, for me, implies an intense focus. Perceiving not just with the eyes but with all of the senses able to connect with the object of the beholding. It invites inspection and examination . . . hints at discovery and discernment. So, if you’ll allow me, I’m “cherry picking” my Bible translation this morning as I chew on the following verses . . .
Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. (1John 3:1-3 NKJV)
Behold what manner of love. Focus on its makeup . . . discover its depth . . . consider its implication . . . glory in its reality.
The manner of love God has given to us is a love which declares us to be children of God. Those who have been redeemed from the slavery of sin have been adopted into the family of God. Offspring born of God . . . having God’s seed abiding in them. Through the Spirit, invited to address the God of Creation as Abba Father. Behold what manner of love!
We are the children of God. Despite all our work-in-progress imperfections that doesn’t change. Even through our failures, He continues His work of fashioning us into the image of His beloved Son. We are not there yet (Boy! . . . am I not there yet!), but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him. For now, His Spirit testifies with our Spirit of the Father’s steadfast love towards us . . . that we should be called children of God!
And so, John says, “Little children, abide in Him” (2:28).
Abide . . . and behold!
By His grace . . . for His glory.