Look Up: A life-changing principle to live by in 2017 and beyond
Look Up Blog

Throughout the Old and New Testaments, God is often directing the eyes of His children upward.  From the moment Adam and Eve sinned and “the eyes of both of them were opened and they knew that they were naked,” God has set about redeeming our sight. (Gn 3:7)  In Scripture, the eyes become a metaphor for our walk with God.  When the eyes are directed upward, we are in faith, hope and worship.

With the fall, a great separation occurred.  After rebelling, Adam and Eve looked down at themselves and away from God.  They saw nakedness, so they ran and hid from God.  Their self-inspection produced shame, condemnation and fear.  They became spiritually blind to the love of God they once enjoyed.  But as we learn in Scripture, God is continually directing our eyes back upwards towards Him.  His love has never wavered.  His plans for us are secure.  When we focus our eyes not on ourselves, but on Him, our perceptions are transformed and so are our lives.

“Look up,” in New Testament Greek, is the word anablepo (an-ab-lep’-o).  When ana (an-ah’), meaning up, is used as a prefix, as in this case, it also implies intensity or reversal. [1]

Blepo (blep’–o) means literally to have sight, to see, and figuratively to observe, discern, perceiveBlepo frequently implies special contemplation. [2] 

When this compound is put together, anablepo means to look up, to recover sight, to receive sight. But that doesn’t capture the definition’s true intensity.  In Scripture, looking up is an action that causes a radical reversal in everyday life circumstances. [3]  Whether it’s ...

Abram who is instructed by God to look up to heaven and envision the stars so that he might believe in the vast number of the descendants God promised to give him (Gn 15:5-6) or . . .

Jesus who looks up to heaven before blessing and breaking the five loaves and two fish so that the offering feeds 5,000 men besides women and children (Mt 14:19-21) or . . .

The blind man from Bethsaida with Jesus’ spit in his eyes who is commanded to look up just before his sight is restored (Mk 8:22-25)

We see throughout the Bible the dramatic results of the eyes focused intently upward.  

God is about redeeming our eyes.  Let’s look up.  Let’s set the eyes of our hearts upward where Almighty God is enthroned.  Let’s look up to God, and away from ourselves, our earthly circumstances and our weaknesses so that He can do the impossible in and through us.  Let’s purposefully contemplate His love for us, His goodness, His power, His faithfulness, His mercy …  because, in Jesus Christ, He has done exceedingly, abundantly, above all we could ask or think.  As we dwell intently on knowing God, as we look up to the Risen Jesus, the landscape of our earthly lives will be radically changed and we will begin to live in the forgiveness of God and the resurrected life Christ died to give us. 

We look up determinedly at the One who loves us, to see as He sees, to exchange blindness for sight.

[1] Strong, James and John R. Kohlenberger, III, The New Strong’s Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, Red Letter Edition (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2001), G308, G303. [2] Ibid., G991. [3] Ibid., G308.