Tuesday, January 5, 2010

The Glory of God

“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.” Hebrews 1:3 (NIV)

I have begun a new Bible study to begin this New Year. By the end of the reading today I was overwhelmed with joy and absolute amazement, yet again, for God. Today’s lesson was about one of the reasons God created man, which was for His Glory. Glory is used to denote “the manifestation of God’s presence” according to Wikipedia. God created everyone and everything for HIS glory alone. Isaiah writes of God calling to “everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made” (43:7). The Bible makes an overwhelming number of references to God’s glory from the beginning to the end. It is represented as filling the whole earth (Isa 6:3), appearing to Moses and Aaron (Num 20:6), filling the temple (2 Chron 5:14), being declared by the heavens and the people (Ps 19:1, 29:9), and belonging to God alone (Isa 42:8). And those are just a few of the Old Testament references to glory. Glory is God’s amazing and wonderful presence is all that He is and all that He has made.

The New Testament is also filled with references to God’s glory, which has now become manifest in the person of Christ Jesus (John 1:14). Christ owns all the same glorious attributes that were always present in God and He is now revealing them to us by walking on the earth. So the amazing thing is that God’s glory now can belong to us, His children, while we are waiting here in these earthly tents in which we dwell. “To them God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col 1:27). Christ is OUR hope of glory as we are revealing God’s glory through Him in ourselves. Paul writes “and we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit” (2 Cor 3:18). Ever-increasing glory. Praise God for His many blessing, for we are now the small vessels in which God is pouring his glory through our faith in Jesus and the filling of the Holy Spirit. Christ is the key that unlocks God’s glory in us. Just as we have no hope of glorifying God without Christ in us, we begin to understand that as we mature in Christ we will reveal “ever-increasing glory” to the world around us. I can’t think of a more wonderful thing than revealing God’s glory. It is an honor, a privilege, and an amazing gift that God would even consider revealing a tiny portion of His glory though sinners like me and the rest of the fallen humanity of this world.