You Become What You Behold

Posted: May 30, 2012 by doulos tou Theou in Christianity, Discipleship, The Christian Life

But this main point has another part to it in 2 Corinthians 3:18. Paul tells us how this is happening. How are we being transformed? Suppose you are jealous for this to happen to you. Suppose that last week, God touched you—as he did some in an extraordinary way—and you long to be transformed into the kind of person who loves other believers with authentic, tender affection. How does it happen?

Paul says in this verse,

We all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

The key, Paul says, is that we “behold [see] the glory of the Lord.” In other words we are transformed into his image by looking at his glory. You become like what you constantly behold.

In the five or ten years after I left Fuller Seminary, people would see me teach who knew Dr. Daniel Fuller and they would laugh at how many of his mannerisms I had absorbed. The reason? He was my hero. I loved his wisdom and his pedagogy and his spirit of humble teachableness. I was with him a lot and I looked and listened. Unwittingly I started to sound like him and move my hands like him and think like him and ask questions like him.

Now Paul says, when you “behold as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, you will be transformed into his likeness, from one degree of glory to another.”

So if we want to show Christ this summer so that people can see him in us, our strategy must be to see him. To see him for who he really is. To fix our gaze on him and look to him and think about him, and put him before us again and again. This is the key to becoming like him. Seeing is the key to showing.

from a sermon by John Piper,  “Summer Is for Seeing and Showing Christ

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