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Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [1]

Seeing. —In the Gospels there are three Greek words (βλέπω, θεωρἑω, ὁράω) used for ‘see,’ sometimes rendered in the Authorized and Revised Versions by ‘behold,’ ‘take heed,’ ‘beware,’ ‘regard.’ The most ordinary significance of the word ‘see’ is, of course, the natural one—to recognize by the act of vision ordinary external objects, as when the blind are described as seeing ( Matthew 15:31,  John 9:7), or men are promised that they shall see the Son of Man, or when the disciples think they see a vision, or the multitude see the miracles of Jesus ( Mark 14:62,  Luke 24:23,  John 6:2).

The more significant uses of the word are, however, figurative . (1) The first usage under this head is where the verb ‘to see’ is used of the recognition of objects not strictly visible, as, for example, when it is said of Peter that he saw the wind ( Matthew 14:30); or when men are told that, if they first cast out the beam out of their own eye, they will then be able to see clearly to cast the mote out of their brother’s eye ( Matthew 7:5); or, again, when it is said that a man shall see death ( Luke 2:26,  John 8:51); or when the Lord speaks of a man as ‘seeing the light of this world’ ( John 11:9), where, of course, it is more strictly the vision of objects made possible through the presence of the light of day.

(2) The second figurative sense is a very ordinary one in the Gospels, where the verb ‘to see’ is employed in the sense of the spiritual vision of the mind and soul. In the Beatitudes, for example, the blessing of the pure in heart is that they shall see God ( Matthew 5:8). The angels also possess the same privilege ( Matthew 18:10). The disciples are told that in seeing Christ they have already obtained the vision of the Father ( John 14:9); while in another passage of the same Gospel the seeing of Christ and believing on Him are the conditions of possessing eternal life ( John 6:40). In the Lord’s great prayer for His disciples He desires that they may see His glory ( John 17:24), which implies a participation in the understanding of Divine things of the highest and most intimate character. In this connexion also is to be noted the strange utterance of our Lord in  Luke 10:18, where, on the return of the Seventy, He speaks of His beholding Satan ‘fallen as lightning from heaven,’ which must imply His spiritual prevision of the final overthrow of the powers of evil, and the establishment of His Divine kingdom. Most significant of all this class of passages, however, are those found in  John 9:39, and  Matthew 13:14-16 with its parallels in  Mark 4:12 and  Luke 8:10. The passage in Jn. distinctly states that the purpose of Christ’s presence in the world was first to bring light to blind eyes, but, secondly, to make blind those who were able to see; and this last statement is further explained in the passage by the answer given to the indignant question of the Pharisees as to whether they also were blind, that their fault consisted in claiming to possess the power of spiritual vision, while their hearts were closed to the real significance of Christ’s message; and so their boast of spiritual perception only magnified their sin. On  Matthew 13:14-16 || see Parable, p. 315 f.

(3) A third general significance of the word ‘see’ is that of an ethical warning in the sense of the English phrase ‘take heed.’ For example, in  Matthew 24:6 we read, ‘See that ye be not troubled’; and in  Mark 8:15 two words are combined in the warning, ‘Take heed (ὁρᾶτε), beware (βλέπετε) of the leaven of the Pharisees, and the leaven of Herod.’

When combined with a preposition (εἰς), the verb βλέπω signifies ‘regard,’ in the sense of ‘pay obsequious attention to,’ as in  Matthew 22:16; and, finally, the word is used of God Himself in His vision of the hearts of men, as in  Matthew 6:6, which reads, ‘Thy Father which seeth in secret shall recompense thee.’

As a general result of the examination of the above passages, it will be noticed that in Jn. the word ‘see’ has a special significance. It is, indeed, one of the words that form a leading conception in his writing. Just as the idea of life arises out of the miracle of the feeding of the multitude, so does that of light spring from the miracle of the healing of the man blind from his birth. In Jn.’s spiritual vocabulary, Christ Himself is the light of the world; and the illumination of the souls of men and the blessing of the gospel can be spoken of in terms of light and its enjoyment as suitably as in terms of life and its possession. Thus the miracles of giving sight to the blind become peculiarly significant; but we need not, therefore, assume that, though they are in this way acted parables, the narratives of such miracles are not to be regarded as of any historical value, but as mere pictorial representations of the spiritual truths they are meant to convey.

Literature.—The Comm. on the various passages, esp. the Expos. Gr. Test ., and Westcott’s St. John  ; Jülicher, Gleichnisreden Jesu , pp. 121–149; Bugge, Die Haupt-Parabeln Jesu , vol. i. pp. 1–89; Expositor , 6th ser. vol. i. [1900] p. 231 ff.; Fiebig, Altjüd. Gleichnisse und die Gleichnisse Jesu  ; Phillips Brooks, Mystery of Iniquity (1893), 208.

G. Currie Martin.

King James Dictionary [2]

See'Ing, ppr. from see. Perceiving by the eye knowing understanding observing beholding.

Note. This participle appears to be used indefinitely, or without direct reference to a person or persons. "Wherefore come ye to me, seeing ye hate me.?"  Genesis 26 . That is, since, or the fact being that or thus because that. In this form of phraseology, that is understood or implied after seeing why come ye to me, seeing that, ye hate me? The resolution of the phrase or sentence is, ye hate me that fact being seen or known by you, why come ye to me? or why come you to me, ye seeing knowing that fact which follows, viz. ye hate me. In this case, seeing retains its participial character, although its relation to the pronoun is somewhat obscured. Originally, seeing, in this use, had direct relation to the speaker or to some other person. "Mow I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not witheld thy son."  Genesis 22 . Here seeing refers to I, or according to the language of syntax, agrees or accords with I. I know thou fearest God, for I see thou hast not withheld thine only son I know thou fearest God by seeing, in consequence of seeing this fact, thou hast not withheld thine only son. But the use of seeing is extended to cases in which it cannot be referred to a specifec person or persons, in which cases it expresses the notoriety or admission of a fact in general, and is left, like the French on, in the phrases on dit, on voit, without application to any particular person.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [3]

To see, in Scripture, is often used to express the sense of vision, knowledge of spiritual things, and even the supernatural knowledge of hidden things, of prophecy, of visions, of ecstacies. Whence it is that formerly those were called seers who afterward were termed nabi, or prophets; and that prophecies were called visions. Moreover, to see, is used for expressing all kinds of sensations. It is said in   Exodus 20:18 , that the Israelites saw voices, thunder, lightning, the sounding of the trumpet, and the whole mountain of Sinai covered with clouds, or smoke. And St. Austin observes, that the verb, to see, is applied to all the five natural senses; to see, to hear, to smell, to taste, to touch. "To see goodness," is to enjoy it. "To see the goodness of the Lord,"  Psalms 27:13; that is, to enjoy the mercy or blessing which God hath promised. "Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God;" that is, they shall have the perfect and immediate fruition of the glorious presence of God in heaven; or they shall understand the mysteries of salvation; they shall perceive the loving kindness of God toward them in this life, and shall at length perfectly enjoy him in heaven.

Webster's Dictionary [4]

(1): ( conj. (but originally a present participle)) In view of the fact (that); considering; taking into account (that); insmuch as; since; because; - followed by a dependent clause; as, he did well, seeing that he was so young.

(2): ( p. pr. & vb. n.) of See