Glenn Sparks - Didsbury I Convention - Wednesday Evening, July 12, 2007

Luke 1:46, “My soul doth magnify the Lord.”

Philippians 1:20, “…Christ shall be magnified in my body…”  Magnify…I’ve been thinking of a magnifying glass and how it is made.  You take a broken piece of glass and make it a magnifying glass by grinding the edges.  God has taken our broken pieces of humanity, grinds away the flesh, and makes us into a magnifying glass.  We hold the glass close to the object to see clearly.  The further away from the glass, the more blurred the object becomes.  We need to be found closer to Christ than we are to the eyes of the world, getting an image of Christ.  If we are further removed from Him, what people see would be blurred and distorted.  It’s not pleasant for the Lord to work with us, but the Lord sees a need to grind away the outer parts of our life, the things that hinder us from magnifying Christ.  We hold a magnifying glass ourselves but in our life, God is the One who puts us where we need to be so others can get a clear image of Christ. 


Sometimes magnifying glasses are scratched and nicked and have abrasions.  Polishing agents can be used to remove those scratches, nicks and abrasions.  Our life could be like this, marred, and thus hinder someone from seeing the Christ.  Surface marks can be taken away so the glass is useful again.  God can polish and cleanse us from things we’ve acquired in our daily living.


The word “focus” is not in the Bible, but we use it often today.  We need to be focused on the right things.  This will be an asset and a help in my life in magnifying Christ.  We could focus on our behaviour, our willingness, etc. but our focus really needs to be on Christ.


In John’s Gospel, “I am” is used often.  John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life:  no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me.”  Jesus said this on the last day of His life:  I am the way, the truth, the life.  When we use a telescope, binoculars or microscope, there is a little turn wheel on them to bring the object into focus.  If we want to focus, there needs to be changes in our lives.  God knows the adjustments that need to take place and He is well able to make the needful changes, and then we can have the privilege of focusing on Jesus.


A few years ago in a home, there was a union meeting.  On Saturday evening in visiting, the man said he believed there was more than one way that is right, but Jesus said, “I am the way.”  He didn’t say, “I am a way,” or “I am another way”.  We need to set our focus on Jesus being “the Way.”  When Jesus said, "I am the way," He was simply saying “Follow Me."  “I am the truth, believe Me;” I am the life, live Me.”  If we do this, then our footsteps will be right.


“I am the truth.”  Truth never changes; it remains the truth regardless of the conditions around it.  Witnesses in court testify of what he or she saw.  They declare in the court exactly what they saw, and their understanding and that is the truth of the matter.  The lawyer tries to change the witness.  If the witness stays true, that will stand.  If a person wavers, the truth of the matter never changes.  Jesus said, “I am the truth.”  He was declaring unto them that He is unchanging.  He was going to be as true in the future as He was now and as He had been in the past.  Maybe something else is dominant, but truth will not change and will come out on top.  Truth will prevail!


Jesus said, “I am the life.”  What is life?  How do you explain life?  Life is a God-given gift.  The fact that we are here is proof we have a life.  We have sight and we can hear and this is proof we have natural life.  But Jesus imparted spiritual life to His disciples and He wants to give the same to us. 


In Elijah’s experience in 1 Kings 19, verses 11 and 12, there was a great and strong wind, an earthquake and a fire, then after all these, there was a calm and Elijah heard the still small voice of God.  If we focus on the life of Christ, that life will enable us to hear the still small voice.  The still small voice can’t be heard in the confusion, turmoil, hustle and bustle of the world.  We need quietness and stillness.  Oh, that we could be still that we could hear the still small voice!  We need the life in order to get revelation so we can see and understand the things God wants us to see and understand.  Jesus was that life.  He is well able to give that life to you and me.  Focus so that life can become more and more a part of our life, that those looking into and through our life might get a true vision of Jesus.


Hymn 343 (1, 3), "Never Let Your Courage Falter"