Oh, I feel that this is so important for Christians to get.
Have You Seen Jesus? (Oswald Chambers)
Being saved and seeing Jesus are not the same thing. Many people who have never seen Jesus have received and share in Gods grace. But once you have seen Him, you can never be the same. Other things will not have the appeal they did before.
You should always recognize the difference between what you see Jesus to be and what He has done for you. If you see only what He has done for you, your God is not big enough. But if you have had a vision, seeing Jesus as He really is, experiences can come and go, yet you will endure "as seeing Him who is invisible" ( Hebrews 11:27 ). The man who was blind from birth did not know who Jesus was until Christ appeared and revealed Himself to him (see John 9 ). Jesus appears to those for whom He has done something, but we cannot order or predict when He will come. He may appear suddenly, at any turn. Then you can exclaim, "Now I see Him!" (see John 9:25 ).
Jesus must appear to you and to your friend individually; no one can see Jesus with your eyes. And division takes place when one has seen Him and the other has not. You cannot bring your friend to the point of seeing; God must do it. Have you seen Jesus? If so, you will want others to see Him too. "And they went and told it to the rest, but they did not believe them either" ( Mark 16:13 ). When you see Him, you must tell, even if they dont believe.
Nevertheless, the Lord will not manifest or reveal Himself to the world at large because the world in general will not love or receive Him (John 14:21-23). So, He establishes the Ecclesia, the called-out-of-the-world assembly of those who have been given the Revelation of Jesus, that they may translate it into the Testimony of Jesus by bearing witness to what they have seen and heard. Indeed, God has purposely hidden the knowledge of Jesus Christ and will only grant it to individuals by way of revelation once they have humbled themselves as children.
All it takes is a millisecond of time for the Revelation to strike you down. I recall when I first received the Revelation of Jesus Christ. I had had many religious and spiritual experiences up to that point, more than the average person. I had been a pastor and teacher for many years. I thought I really knew the Lord. But one day God revealed His Son IN me. I was sitting in the backyard reading the Word and without warning, in my heart of hearts, I "saw" (not with my eyes, but inwardly) Jesus seated at God's right hand, and I saw myself raised and seated with Him in heavenly places (Ephesians 2:6). That day was like walking out of one room and into another, closing the door behind me. I got a glimpse into another world. I finally knew what before I had only talked about. Though not as outwardly dramatic as Paul's experience, inwardly a massive earthquake had taken place and my foundations were ripped to shreds. It was the beginning of the end of my career as a preacher for Organized Religion. I saw the real Jesus and realized He was nothing like flesh and blood had said. Hallelujah!
[b]Being a Christian vs. Knowing the Lord[/b]
How did Paul learn the Gospel? Who taught it to him? "I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ (Galatians 1:11,12)." What a glorious statement! Five words uttered by revelation are worth more than ten thousand words obtained through flesh and blood. Dear friend, do you really know the Lord? Is this knowledge based on revelation, or is it merely your idea, or what you've been taught by flesh and blood?
In the 1980's I used to go out with other brothers and sisters knocking on doors and passing out tracts. We would ask, "Are you born again? Are you saved? Are you a Christian?" But these terms in recent years have become so watered-down and vague that most everyone who has ever attended a steeple house on Christmas or Easter claims to be a born again Christian - but they don't have the Revelation of Christ! That the potential exists for us to do things in the name of Jesus without truly knowing and being known of Him ought to put us on our face before the Lord, praying for experiential knowledge of Him by way of revelation. There's no other way to truly know Him. God has made sure of that.
How much of what we hear being preached and peddled around the world in the Name of Jesus is but the regurgitations and ramblings of people who can only repeat what everyone else is saying? Where is the Revelation of Jesus Christ? Who is the man or the woman that refuses to confer with flesh and blood, but only speaks according to what they have seen and heard by revelation through the Spirit? Most teachers are teaching what was taught to them, and their teachers learned it from their teachers, and so on it goes until we no longer have Spirit-birthed revelation, we have third and fourth-generational head-knowledge, yesterday's manna and hand-me-down flesh and blood doctrines. As one of my brothers puts it: there are many echoes in the land, but few voices. There is an ocean of difference between repeating what you have heard and speaking of what you have experienced! Is it any wonder that there is much learning, but no experiential knowledge of Truth? If we speak of ourselves then we can only impart knowledge. But, if we resolve to only speak by revelation, we can impart Life. Only revelation can change a person.
The Revelation of Jesus Christ will be the stone of stumbling and the rock of offense to Organized Religion (I Peter 2:8). When Stephen was called to give an account to the religious leaders his testimony convicted them so that they ground their teeth in anger. With face shining as an angel, being full of the Holy Ghost, he lifted up his eyes and saw Jesus Christ standing at the right hand of God (Acts 7:54-56). What a blessed, holy moment; what a vision! - but just look and see what the revelation cost Stephen. They dragged him outside and stoned him to death.
To be sure, when you really and truly meet Jesus of Nazareth, when you "see" Him for the first time, when He reveals Himself to you, it will immediately put you at enmity with those who claim to see but do not see: mostly, the religious and "spiritual" ones, the denominations and Towers of Babel which dot the landscape of Christendom, the scribes and Pharisees.
How blessed are they which do see and hear the Lord! Many are seeking power, anointing, spiritual gifts, title, office, position, and audience. But revelation is sufficient. If we have the Revelation of Jesus Christ we don't need anything else. And if we don't have the Revelation, nothing else will make any difference.
(quotes by C.Brogden)
Personally, I needed a revelation and I praise God that He revealed Himself to me as He is, not how man taught me He was supposed to be.
I indeed pray consistantly for the Lord to "reveal Himself" in a real and true way to the people I pray for.
In Him, Chanin