“Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith. . .”

Hebrews 12:2a

Forgetting this will leave us frustrated and feeling futile.

Looking unto Jesus.

Has there ever been a simpler solution for true serenity of soul?  No, not at all.  And, unlike other religions’ meditative practices where you seek to clear your mind of anything that distracts or focus in on one’s ritualistic requirements, this “hungering and thirsting soul” brings peace-of-mind and tranquility of heart (Mt. 11:28-30).

Some, like Marx, have called Christianity the “opiate (drug) of the people,” which dulls one’s senses to those things that are happening around them.  In essence, as someone once said, it’s being “so Heavenly-minded that we’re no earthly good.”  Or, as another person likened an attempt to escape from life’s harsh realities, it’s the proverbial position of “the ostrich with its head in the sand.”

But, oh, dear Pilgrim, today’s Manna is not a denial of life’s injustices or man’s cruel “inhumanity to man.”

No, there’s still a need for “watchmen on the wall” (Ez. 33:1ff) and modern-day prophets (forth-tellers) who will “speak the truth in love” (Eph. 4:15), using God’s Word as a “two-edged Sword” (Heb. 4:12) to woo and warn those who are heading to certain destruction (Heb. 2:1-3; 3:7-19; 5:11-6:8; 10:26-39; 12:5-29; Rev. 22:11-15).

Yet, in the midst of our anguish of mind and agony of soul over others’ spiritual blindness and willful rejection of Christ and His Word, we still must continue “looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith;” otherwise, we shall soon find ourselves living in total despair.

Daily meditating upon God’s Word will help us better understand “the Big Picture” of God’s Plan; yet, it will also help us better grasp a deeper insight into the dark depths of man’s depravity.  And, if we’re not careful, we’ll end up focusing more on current events and the latest headlines than we do the Last Chapter (Rev. 22:1ff) and Christ’s Presence with us (Heb. 12:2b-4).

The Greek word “aphorao” is used here for “looking” and means “consider attentively, discern clearly, perceive, take heed, etc.”  It’s a “fixing steadfastly” of our mind upon Jesus Himself and a “hiding of His Word in our hearts so we’ll not sin against Him” (Ps. 119:11).  Only in so doing will our lives be as the “house built upon the Rock,” not the soon-to-be-destroyed-by-the-storm “house built upon the sand” (Mt. 7:24-27).

Now, more than ever, there seems to be a search for truth and “authentic Christianity.”  More-and-more, like those shipwrecked at sea and looking for anything that floats, those around us are questioning the status quo and “church as usual.”  But, do not fret or give in to despair, dear Pilgrim; instead “look unto Jesus” and tell others to do the same.  It’s our “transfixed look” that results in a “transformed life.”  So, look to Jesus now—and never take your eyes off Him.

By Tom Smith Morning Manna Dated July 23, 2009

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