“Here faith begins what sight shall perfect” by John Owen

“But where this faith is, the greatness of the mysteries with it embraceth heightens its efficacy, in all it blessed effects, upon the soul. Such is this constitution of the person of Christ, wherein the glory of all the holy properties and perfections of the divine nature is manifested and does shine forth. So speaks the apostle, 2 Cor. 3:18: “Beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory.” this glory which we behold, is the glory of the face of God in Jesus Christ (ch. 4:6) or the glorious representation which is made of him in the person of Christ, whereof we shall treat afterward. The glass wherein this glory is represented unto us— proposed unto our view and contemplation— is divine revelation in the Gospel. Herein we behold it, by faith alone. And those whose view is steadfast, who most abound in that contemplation by the exercise of faith, are thereby “changed into same image, from glory to glory” — or are more and more renewed and transformed into the likeness of God, so represented unto them.

That which shall, at last, perfectly effect our utmost conformity to God, and, therein, our eternal blessedness— is vision, or sight. “We shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is:” 1 John 3:2. Here faith begins what sight shall perfect hereafter. But yet “we walk by faith, and not by sight:” 2 Cor. 5:7. And although the life of faith and vision differ in degrees— or, as some think, in kind— yet have they both the same object, and the same operations, and the is a great cognation between. The object of vision is the whole mystery of the divine existence and will; and its operations is a perfect conformity unto God— a likeness unto him— wherein our blessedness consists….And this it doth, in a peculiar manner, in the contemplation of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ; and herein we have our nearest approaches unto the life of vision, and the effects of it. For therein, “beholding the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ, we are changed into the same image, from glory to glory;” which, perfectly to consummate, is the effect of sight in glory.

– John Owen, The Works of John Owen, vol. 1 (ed. W.H. Goold; Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1850-53/2013), 51-52.


About nickgardner29

Love Christ; Love Cait; Love the local church. Avid reader of books, eater of nachos, Razorback fan.
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