CCXCIX. The Vision of God.

Rev. xxii. 4. “And they shall see His face.”
THE vision of God is threefold—the vision of righteous-
ness, the vision of grace, the vision of glory.
I. Righteousness includes all those attributes which
make up an idea of the Supreme Ruler of the universe.
Perfect justice, perfect truth, perfect purity, perfect moral
harmony in all its aspects. It is a vision of awe, tran-
scending all thought. A vision of awe, but a vision also
of purification, of renewal, of energy, of power, of life.
II. The vision of righteousness is succeeded by the
vision of grace. When Butler in his dying moments had
expressed his awe at appearing face to face before the
moral Governor of the world, his chaplain, we are told,
spoke to him of the blood that cleanseth from all sin.
“Ah, this is comfortable,” he replied; and with these
words on his lips he gave up his soul to God. He only
has access to eternal love who has stood face to face
with eternal righteousness. The incarnation of the Son is
the mirror of his Father’s love.
III. The mirror of love melts into the vision of glory.
Here we catch only glimpses at rare intervals revealed in
the lives ol God’s saints and heroes, revealed, above all, in
the record of the written word and in the incarnation of
the Divine Son. There we shall see Him face to face,
perfect truth, perfect righteousness, perfect purity, perfect
love, perfect light; and we shall gaze with unblenching
eye and our visage shall be changed.
J. B. Lightfoot, D.D.

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