I heard a true story about a man who took his young son deer hunting for the first time. The young boy was pumped to climb into the deer stand. He had dreamed of the day he would bring home a “rack for his wall”.
As the Dad and his son sat eagerly, out of the woods peered a large doe and her fawn. The dad‘s adrenaline accelerated as he instructed his son to release the safety on the gun. But the son was awestruck with the beauty of the animals. He sat with amazement as he melted into God’s beautiful creation. He no longer was interested in obtaining a prized wall plaque…. His heart had been captured by the presence and beauty of God.
As the years went on, he continued to go hunting with his father. To this day, he takes his own son to the woods early in the morning during hunting season; however he never fires a gun. He ventures into the woods to practice “beholding”. He has learned to behold God in the depth of his being.
This testimony spurred me to seek out A deeper understanding of “beholding”.
In the King James version, the word “behold” appears 1,298 times in the Old Testament and 234 in the New Testament. The definition of behold is slightly different in Hebrew and Greek:
In Hebrew (Hinneh): to perceive through sight or apprehension; to gaze upon; to observe. It was a pleasure to behold the beauty of the sunset
In Greek (eídō): to know; to see; be sure to see. Behold. Don't miss this! It is an observable, objective fact!
Let’s examine a quote from Alex Swain.
“Beholding the grace and power and love of God and the goodness of the world seemed to cause scales to fall from my eyes. While beauty and grace were all the more illuminated, so too were their contrasts”.
Lastly, I invite you to read two passages while you meditate on the verb behold.
““Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world.”
John 17:24 NKJV
“For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, for to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done. And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, by stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus. And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.”
Acts 4:27-31 KJV