Updated: Mar 23, 2019
by Dave Miller
So what to do with God and his Glory?
There is no way to avoid this truth unless I prop an idol up in God’s place. And… If I choose who or what gets the ultimate glory award then I become the authority of glory ascribing. The problem: 1) I am not worthy or qualified to make that determination. 2) I can’t even control my 5 children at all times let alone God. So I am left with a decision, but not the decision you might think.
C.S Lewis put it this way"
It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.
The decision then, because we are inescapably worshippers, is the pursuit of the lesser or greatest glory. God is the promise of our greatest pleasure and joy because he is the greatest treasure and worthy of all glory.
Jesus once told a story. He said:
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field”(Mt. 13:44).
All that he has for a field? What is valuable enough to sell everything in order to gain one treasure in a field? Jesus and his kingdom are of such infinite worth, that nothing, even all that I have, can compare to him. But the sacrifice of all that the man owns isn’t described as hardship but rather joy. It is the joy that moves him to give up what cannot and will not bring him the joy he desires to gain what will give him the greatest joy possible. God’s Glory brings immeasurable joy to those who find this treasure and give up on all other insufficient promises, options, and idols.
The Glory of God above all else resonates with people. Is it any wonder that the bestselling hardback non-fiction book in history starts with the words, “IT’S NOT ABOUT YOU.” People around us are stumbling and surviving through life with no aim or purpose, without a real answer for the questions, “Why am I here?” Rick Warren goes on to write:
The purpose of your life is far greater than your own personal fulfillment, your peace of mind, or even your happiness. It’s far greater than your family, your career, or even your wildest dreams and ambitions. If you want to know why you were placed on this planet, you must begin with God. You were born by his purpose and for his purpose.
If God’s Glory is our purpose, our reason for life, our greatest joy, then we are wise to understand the Bible’s focus on His Glory to align our thoughts, lives, and practices accordingly. God is the beginning, middle and the end. Everything starts by him, from him, and for him. Paul wrote of God this way:
“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! ‘For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?’ ‘Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?’ For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:33-36).
So join with me in the pursuit of the Glory of God from the beginning to forever. AMEN!
Glory From the Beginning
There is no better place to start than Genesis 1:1:
“In the beginning God…”
Years ago, on a Sunday morning a preacher asked a simple question, “What is the most important verse in the Bible?” The natural responses came to mind like John 3:16. But he went on to say, “Genesis 1:1 is the most important verse in the Bible. Without it there would be no John 3:16!”
In the beginning God… God was. God is without beginning. God is without end. God has always been. Moses taught Israel to pray in remembrance, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God” (Psalm 90:2). And then God spoke. And when he spoke what wasn’t began. What had never been became a declaration of his Glory. The Word of God inaugurated His eternally unmatched renown in creation for all of history.
History began with God’s will to create. In the beginning God created. All things come from him and are for him. All things belong to him and “in him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). History reserves the place of supremacy for the only one who is worthy, the author of history. Even creation cannot help but declare God’s amazing worth. King David sang:
“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork” (Psalm 19:1).
The Apostle Paul wrote:
“For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,in the things that have been made” (Romans 1:20).
When God spoke He brought forth something glorious to scream the unmatched Glory of its Creator forever.
Glory All the Way to the Never End
Forever is a long time. As long as God is God then Glory is what he is due. Since God will never cease to be God then forever glorious he will be. Just take a moment to take in the picture the Apostle John paints in his Revelation:
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end (Revelation 21:1-6).
Wow. Just wow.
It will be done. He is the beginning and the end. The Great Alpha and Omega. There is no room for any theology of me, my, and mine. There is no room for any story except HIStory. He must increase and I must decrease. But when we understand our place in HIStory then, and only then do we find purpose and joy.
Until there's #NoPlaceLeft...
C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory
John Piper, God is the Gospel
Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life
Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life
Sentergy: When Jesus, People, Practice and Theology Collide
Chapter 1: The Glory of God
Chapter 2: The Glory of God in Jesus
Chapter 3: The Glory of God in the Gospel
Chapter 4: The Glory of God in Disciple Making
Chapter 5: If You Love Me You Will Obey What I Command
Chapter 6: Monday Morning Disciple Making
Chapter 7: Monday Morning Disciple Making Part 2
Interlude: The Father's Heart
Conclusion: The Lump In Your Throat