In another thread, a discussion has gone forward that underscores the question of how one "sees" the glory of God, how one comes to perceive and "know" (epiknosis) God and receive salvation even if they haven't heard the Gospel.
I wanted to further this thought with the reminder to us all that even for the born again Christian, "spiritual sight" of the glory of Jesus is the only way we are sanctified, grow to maturity and one day glorified, much less converted and justified.
Here are the obvious Scriptures that prove that spiritual revelation of the glory of God in Jesus is so critical even for the born again believer :
I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him,
having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, - Ephesians 1:17-18
And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding,
so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; - Colossians 1:9-10
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. - 2 Corinthians 3:18
For this reason I bow my knees before the Father,
from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named,
that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith-that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth,
and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. - Ephesians 3:14-19
Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. - 1 John 3:2
No one comes to see the glory of God, especially in Jesus, apart from a Spirit of wisdom and revelation. The Ephesian church was a model of faith and love, full of the Spirit, and yet, they still needed more revelation of Jesus and Paul knew only God could supply that and it is not automatic even with the continual preaching of Jesus. If this is true for the born again Spirit filled believer, how much more true for the hard hearted spiritless unbeliever.
On every mission field, the prayer of the missionary is "God, please enlighten their hearts when we share Jesus with them. God, please reveal Christ to them." By this, the missionary does not mean please make my Gospel presentation accurate. By this we mean that the truth of Jesus, without your Spirit enlightening a dead heart. is dead on arrival.
Likewise, in the church, there are plenty of Gospel experts who know about Jesus. Apart from a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him though, no sanctification, no maturity, no glorification.
The human mind, human hearing, sight and perception, can only go so far. Spiritual vision and understanding are the seedbed of God's kingdom, both for conversion and for all of salvation.
The more the church understands this, the more preaching of Jesus we will hear, the more prayer will be the centerpiece of even preaching, and the more simple "church' and evangelism will become. "Reduced" or, more rightly, exalted to this:
Lord, "Show us" Christ we beg you.