The All-Seeing Eye
Genesis 16:13-14
And she called the name of the LORD that spoke to her, You God see me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that sees me?…

1. God sees your heart — what you are. Others do not see your heart; they cannot. They can only see what is outward. You cannot see the heart of so small a thing as a watch. It has a gold or silver case, and a beautiful dial, and hands such as good watches have, and you may pay a large sum of money for it; and yet its inside, which is the real watch, may be all defective and wrong. Now your heart determines what you are. "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he." It is what you think and feel, and wish, and purpose, that marks out what you really are. And I daresay you are sometimes thankful enough that nobody can see that; things are often outwardly so good, and yet so bad within. But God sees it all — all that we are within — all that is going on in our inmost heart. The heart is transparent to Him. It is as if it were made of glass.

2. God sees your life — what you do. Much of what is outward, as well as all that is within, is unseen and unknown by others. Many things are done secretly. I have been in institutions in which a large number of young people are being educated. Looking from the governor's room into the common hall where they work and play and get their meals, is a window that commands the whole. He had scarcely to rise from his chair in order to see all that was going on. And they knew it. Every now and then you might see an eye turned to the window, especially if there was anything questionable or wrong going on. And sure enough there was the face at the window — all was seen by the governor! And yet, even in such a case, where there is the sharpest lookout, it is possible to elude observation; things are done which no one sees, which everybody denies, and sometimes it is impossible to find out who has been the wrong-doer. But God sees all. Nothing escapes His observation. He slumbers not nor sleeps. The most secret thing that anyone can do, lies open to Him. Every word, though spoken in a whisper, He hears. Every act, however hidden, His eye looks right down upon.

3. God sees you in the dark. It is wonderful what an idea most people have of darkness, as covering and hiding things, Now, we need to be reminded that however it may be with men, darkness makes no difference to God. He sees in the dark just as in the light; so that, so far as He is concerned — and it is mainly with Him we have to do — it is of no use waiting till night, till it is dark.

4. God sees you in the crowd. When one wishes not to be seen, he likes to get into a crowd. We speak of being "lost in the crowd." Hence it is so easy to do many things in a crowd, which one would not do alone. Hence evil becomes so bold in a crowd. I recollect seeing a number of youths standing at a corner, in a seafaring town, going great lengths in the way of scoffing and reviling and ridiculing all that was good. A friend challenged any one of them to go out with him along a country road and say the same things there. He dared them to do, one by one, what they did boldly in the mass. I need not say the challenge was not accepted — all shrunk from it. But here, too, it is otherwise with God than it is with men. Just as darkness makes no difference, so numbers make none. Each individual out of ten thousand stands out as distinctly as if there were but the one.

5. God sees you when alone. A strange feeling of being unobserved, so as to be at liberty to do anything, comes over one when he is alone. There is such a sense of solitude that, so far as anyone else is concerned, it seems to matter little what one does. To be left alone with oneself is far more dangerous for some than to be surrounded by the most skilful of tempters. Many have found their way to prison and to ruin just through being left alone. But when one is most alone, in the most out-of-the-way place, in the remotest corner of the earth — God sees. Gehazi, the prophet's servant, thought he was all unobserved when he hurried after Naaman, the Syrian, after he was healed, and by a lying device got money from him, which he stowed away securely, and then presented himself before his master. How he must have been startled when Elisha said, "Went not my heart with thee?" And so God says, "Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him?"

6. God sees you everywhere. "The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good" (Proverbs 15:3). "The eyes of the Lord run to and fro, throughout the whole earth" (2 Chronicles 16:9). "Do not I fill heaven and earth, saith the Lord" (Jeremiah 23:24).

7. God sees you always. There is no moment when He does not see you — night or day — waking or sleeping — alone or in company. It is told of Linnaeus, the famous naturalist, that he was greatly impressed with this thought, and that it told on his conversation, his writings, and his conduct. He felt the importance of this so much that he wrote over the door of his study the Latin words: "Innocui vivite; Numen adest; Live innocently; God is here." We might well have these words before us everywhere.

(J. H. Wilson, M. A.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me?

WEB: She called the name of Yahweh who spoke to her, "You are a God who sees," for she said, "Have I even stayed alive after seeing him?"

Power of the Eye
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