“Sir, we would see Jesus”

At the Church of the Open Door in downtown Los Angeles, a plaque was attached to the pulpit, visible only to the speaker, which read, “Sir, we would see Jesus” (John 12:21).  Everyone who spoke from the grand pulpit of that historic church was challenged by that verse.  The response to their message was not due to their eloquent words, but because of lifting up Jesus Christ and making him known.

Perhaps it was this plaque that challenged Dr. J. Vernon Mcgee, as pastor of that church for twenty-one years.  I have seldom heard anyone who lifted up Jesus Christ in a sermon more than he did.  His desire was to cause his congregation to draw closer to Jesus.  He had a definite impact on my life as Minister of Youth at Church of the Open Door.

 Did you ever hear Dr. McGee preach at C.O.D. (as the church was affectionally known?  Or, have you listened to his Thru the Bible radio program?  How has he impacted your life?

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17 Responses to “Sir, we would see Jesus”

  1. My first job with NASA was at Edwards, CA in 1961-2

    I recall accompanying my Sunday School group of High Schoolers to the Church of the Open Door and hearing J. Vernon

  2. Don Hickerson says:

    Yes, both! While traveling we made sure to worship at C.O.D. while in L.A. and our family heard him preach at the Greenlake Presbyterian church in Seattle. My wife and I listened to Dr. Mcgee for many years and still hear his recordings late at night here in Salem, Oregon. He was a great encouragement to us as young Christians many years ago.

  3. Laura (Rouze) Brooks says:

    I loved the humor J. Vernon put in his sermons also and the fact that he would even take the time to talk to kids in Jr. or Sr. high school!

  4. Linda Parmenter Wilbur says:

    I still have very fond memories of growing up at the Church of the Open Door. I remember in grade school and junior high sitting in church (with my parents, Russ and Vicky – along with my brother, Bob) listening to Pastor McGee. My mother would take detailed notes of his sermons, writing down every verse he would cross reference. I so appreciate my dad and mom bringing me to church all those years!

  5. Chuck Kelley says:

    Hi Jim, Hello from Riga, Latvia. A few hours ago I picked up Gregg Cantelmo at the airport. He will teach next week at Baltic Pastoral Institute, where I serve as a prof and a dean. Both Gregg and I have fond memories of our COD years…Dr. McGee…and your own profound Bible teaching. Thank you. Blessings…Chuck

    • Jim Klubnik says:

      Chuck, it is good to hear from you. Peggi and I ministered in Riga many years ago. We will be praying for you and for Gregg. Please give him our regards. May God richly bless you both as you serve the Lord in this area of the world.
      God bless!

  6. gwendolyn triggs says:

    I enjoy Dr. McGee’s sermons I love to hear him speak. Everything he spoke about them is happening in churches today. Bro. Jim you remind me of him during your Thursday nite program, after all your were trained by him.

  7. Sara says:

    Oh he is my teacher everyday. Been on the bus off and on since 2000. In 2011 my life had come to a new season, and the bible bus just happen to re-start its five year program , God timing is amazing! I found this web page because he talked about this very plaque (Podcast Galatins 4:6-24 ) Like so many things Dr. McGee talks about I search find and go deeper with his stories. I have to keep a box of tissues handy, I am so blessed to have the web, iPhone ect… to keep Gods word near at all times!

  8. Kenneth Wilson says:

    I First heard J.V. MCGEE on the radio thru the bible. While overseas with the Army I asked God to help me find a way to learn & do a bible study as I looked in the library I found his complete set and order one for mysel. God has led me to tremendous truths through the study of his word with J V Mcgee someday in heaven I will be able to thank him for being a light for Christ in this world and to me. I Love him for that.

    • Jim Klubnik says:

      I am thankful that you were able to study the Bible with Dr. J. Vernon McGee. To me, the highlight of his messages was his exaltation of Jesus Christ. He was a gifted speaker who always sought to honor the Lord. I am so thankful for the opportunity to minister at the Church of the Open Door during his tenure there.

    • What a blessing it is to hear of the way the Lord led you to Dr. McGee’s ministry. Jim always commented that Dr. McGee had a gift for making simple the complex truths of the Word of God. He was so thankful that his ministry continues through radio today, many years after his death.

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