Heidi Baker is one of the countless ones who have seen Jesus. It’s the most beautiful and holy of prophetic visions, and since we should eagerly desire the gift of prophecy (1 Cor 14:1), we should all pray that we see Jesus in this life. All who believe will see Him face to face in Heaven, but it is not impossible to see Him even if this life. In fact, I myself have seen Him.
As I told you in my last blog post, I started to doubt quite quickly after I became a believer. One evening, I kneeled down in my room, praying that I would see God, that He would show Himself to me. I haven’t read the Old Testament warnings that seeing the Lord will result in sudden death (Ex 19:21), so I prayed passionately about this for over 20 minutes. And the great thing with Jesus is that He made it possible to see God, since He is God. “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father”, He said (John 14:9). And because of His resurrection to eternal life, it is possible for anyone to see Him just like Ananias or John did (Acts 9, Rev 1).
So next day in school, I was tired and rested my head on a table in the corridor. As I closed my eyes, I saw Jesus’ silhouette in front if me. “Woaw! What was that?!” I thought, opening my eyes. Later that evening as I went to bed, I closed my eyes and I saw the same picture. It was a classic depiction of Christ, similar to this one. And the crazy part is that this continued for over a year. Every time I closed my eyes and rested I saw Jesus, independently of what I was thinking about.
Some years later, in 2010, the Lord gave me an incredible gift of prayer. I prayed thousands of prayers every day, and I could have a constant conversation with God inside my head for hours. After checking off a long prayer list, I was lying on my bed worshipping, and then the whole atmosphere of the room changed. It was filled with a holy presence, that’s the best way I can describe it. From above, a picture resembling an orthodox icon came down towards me, depicting Jesus. However, He was not a picture – He was alive. He had brown eyes, a brown beard and a blue robe, similar to this icon.
I remember thinking “He is here”. And so I asked, quietly, “Am I on the right path?” A deep voice boomed inside my head, that I’ve never heard before or after: “You know you are.”
As mentioned, I’m not the only one who has had similar experiences. My friend Micke Jåfs here in Sweden saw Jesus when he was 15 years old. When telling me this I asked him “How did you see Him?” “As I see you know. Physically.” Anglican priest Mark Stibbe writes in his excellent book Prophetic Evangelism how he saw Jesus during the Christmas holidays in 1980:
I woke up very suddenly at six minutes past one in the morning. My digital alarm clock revealed the time. I was definitely awake, not sleeping.
The next moment the bedroom door ﬂew open very quickly. Strangely, the door did not crash against the wardrobe next to it but came very suddenly to a halt a few centimetres away from it.
What happened next will remain with me for the rest of my life.
In walked a tall, white, radiant figure, about seven or eight feet in height. I looked towards the face but there were no definable features. The light was simply too bright for me to make out anything distinct. But I knew it was a face.
This being stood before me for a few seconds. I was not at all frightened. A hand reached out to me, beckoning. I heard the words, ’Follow me.’ Then the figure left.
Another one who has seen Jesus is Michele Perry, Christian art worker and missionary who has been a part of Heidi Baker’s Iris Global organization, helping the poor and preaching the Gospel in South Sudan. She writes on her blog about “His Face”:
Ever since Jesus walked into my room and introduced Himself to me when I was seven, I have been ruined for even the best of Hollywood’s efforts. The Jesus I know looks ethnically Middle Eastern, and I’ve never seen anyone remotely ethnically similar be cast for his role. But it’s His eyes that are hard enough to describe let alone capture after walking with Him for over two decades.
And then we have Colton Burpo, who had visions of Jesus and heaven as a four year old and recognized Jesus when he saw the famous “Prince of Peace” painting by Akiane Kramarik.
Maybe somebody thinks “If all these people have seen Jesus, wouldn’t he look exactly the same to all of them?” Not necessarily, Isaiah’s prophetic description of Jesus in Is. 53 is radically different from John’s Megaman Jesus in Rev. 1, with white hair, bronze-coloured feet and a big sword in his mouth. I don’t interpret the fact that I saw Jesus with long hair as a proof that this was how He really looked like, rather as a new believer, the long-haired version was the only way I would recognize Him due to pop culture depictions of Him.
Why then does not all Christians see Jesus? Well, all will see Him, in Heaven. And even if it is amazing to see Him here on earth, I believe that the greater the vision, the greater the task. Both Mark, Michele, Colton and me saw Him when we had just been saved, to encourage us to preach His word, and Heidi saw Him when she was about to enter a, extremely difficult phase in her missionary work in Mozambique. But this shouldn’t discourage us – just prepare for a wild ride, pray hard and read the Word, and hopefully you will share the glory of seeing His face and the pain of being crucified with Him.