Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Leonard Ravenhill on Pictures of Christ

I do not have any pictures of Christ in my home, because I don't think you should make any likeness, any graven image. And nobody knows what Christ was like. You see pictures of Jesus as a baby. You seem him as a young man. You see him, sometimes, on the back of an animal riding into Jerusalem. But there's a picture I've only ever seen once and it was so grotesque I didn't look a second time. At the voice of the Son of God they're all going to rise and face the eternal Judge. What will He be like? In Australia they show me the picture that they have. Beachcroft or somebody painted a picture of Christ in Australia. He's got lovely blond hair and bright blue eyes and a lovely flaxen beard. Well, I don't think that was a picture of Jesus. And the Chinese have an interpretation of Christ through their artists. And there are some dreadful pictures I think, that have been given by the "great masters" so-called. And they've given us pictures of Jesus, but I'll tell you what: it's a very different picture in the word of God. I believe the Church of Jesus Christ needs a new revelation of the majesty of God! This is what? This is the King of kings and He's the Judge of judges and He's the Tribunal of tribunals! And there's no court of appeal after it; the verdict is final. There will be no bias judgment. Two people at least have said to me this week 'There is no justice in the earth today!'—maybe there isn't, but I hang on a word that says "Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?" (Gen. 18:25). The Apostle Paul got a picture of Jesus; not with a lamb in His arms, not like the stained glass windows in our so-called cathedrals, where Jesus looks pathetically feminine! He sees Jesus and he says, here He is, He is the King immortal, invisible, the only wise God, to whom be praise and glory forever. So, we're going to see the King of Kings. He's the Judge of judges in the Court of courts. In the final tribunal—there is no tribunal after this—this is finish. And when I hear people singing, you know, 'put your hand in the hand of him that walks on the water'—forget it. Or the new song that's out, 'shake hands with Jesus'—listen, when you see Jesus you're not going up and say, 'Hey, buddy, I'm glad you died for me'. When you see Jesus you'll be almost paralyzed with fear, unless you have a glorified body and a glorified mind! Who is writing the book? This is a revelation to a man on an island—on a devil's island—the worst place, the gathering of the scum of the Earth. And here he is. And if you had gone to him that morning and had seen him sitting on a rock contemplating, you might have said to him, 'Well, John, I didn't expect to find you in this hell-hole, with all these demon possessed men. And here you are in the isle of Patmos'. He says, 'No, I'm not'. 'Where then are you?' He says, 'I'm in the Spirit'. He was in the Spirit when this enormous revelation was given to him. The picture of Jesus here is not the picture of a pathetic individual pushed around by anybody who want to push Him around. I think sometimes we think we're going to march up and say, 'Well, you know Jesus, do you know how many years I served you, and how many souls I won for you, and how many sermons I preached for you?' Oh, no, no, no, no, no. Well what will He be like in Heaven? Well, I'll tell you what the Book says He'll be like: he says His hair is as white as snow, His feet are like burnished brass, His face is like the Sun in its strength, His eyes are living coals of fire, His tongue is a sharp two-edged sword—and here is John, who use to lean his head on the bosom of Jesus and hear that divine heartbeat—the man that I believe knew more about Jesus than anyone else—and when he saw Jesus there on His throne in His majesty, with His face brighter than the Sun, with His feet like burnished brass, with His eyes like flames of fire, with His tongue majestic and His voice like the sound of many waters—John, the man who had walked with Him and talked with Him for three years, says that "When I saw Him, I fell down at His feet as dead." (Rev. 1:17) What do you think you and I are going to do?
~Leonard Ravenhill, The Judgment Seat of Christ (video) (audio)