The Meaning of Glory

The Meaning of Glory

The Meaning of Glory.

“The whole earth is full of God’s glory!” (Isaiah 6:3)

GLORY: the weighty splendor of God’s personal presence;

GLORIFY: to acknowledge and applaud the reality of God’s presence in the world; to make his presence heavier, clearer, more obvious, more credible, less hidden; to live in a way that preserves God’s good reputation and glorious name.

The mystery of glory reaches its crescendo in the Person of Jesus Christ. Jesus was glory in a minor key. Here was the eternal Son of God, who emptied Himself of His glory in heaven to become a man, identifying with unglory, a tarnished image of Himself. We see little snapshots of His undisguised glory, such as the Transfiguration, but for the most part, He put His weighty splendor aside for a season.

From most appearances to the interested observer, Jesus was a man only. True, a unique spiritual genius, a miracle worker, but still a man. He was not sanctimonious, He did not have a halo. But we all know that appearances can be deceiving. Sure, He was born in an animals’ cave, raised in Jewish Law, was hungry and thirsty, and hung out with those common types not given to glory or associated with glory in any way.

Yes, Jesus was “humble, riding on a donkey,” an excellent metaphor for Jesus’ life. And yet, despite appearances, Jesus somehow contained God’s pure glory. Through faith, we can agree with John in his gospel: “We have seen His glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)

We are called to imitate and live out the life of Jesus, and perhaps He Himself has given us a picture of what God’s glory looks like this side of heaven. Perhaps we too are glory in a minor key for this earthly season. So maybe this is what it looks like to glorify God, to be filled with God’s muted glory as we follow Jesus, “the radiance of God’s glory.” (Hebrews 1:3). Indeed, mysteriously, but in reality, God is glorified when we:

G ive to God all thanks and praise. “Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. In a loud voice they said: ‘Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honor and glory and praise!’ Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: ‘To Him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, forever and ever!” (Revelations 5:11-13). * Also refer to Psalm 145, Psalm 19:1-4, Luke 2:8-14, and Revelation 4:8-11.

L ive a fruit-bearing life for God. “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit – fruit that will last.” (John 15:8-16) * Also refer to Galatians 5:22, Philippians 1:11, Colossians 1:10, and Ephesians 5:9.

O ffer a lifestyle of justice and mercy. “Is this not the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter – when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood? Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.” (Isaiah 58:6-8).  * Also refer to 1 Corinthians 6:20, Romans 12:1-2, 1 Thessalonians 1:12, and Psalm 82:2-4.

R ejoice in the fellowship of suffering. “My friends, do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice that you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. If you are insulted because of the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.” (1 Peter 4:12-14). * Also refer to John 21:19, John 12:23-28, Philippians 3:1, 8-12, Hebrews 2:9, and Ephesians 3:13,.

I nitiate deeds of goodness. “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and give glory to your Father in heaven. (Mathew 5:14-16).     * Also refer to 1 Timothy 6:18, 1 Peter 2:12, 2 Corinthians 9:10-15, and Ephesians 2:10.

A ccept one another in unity. “May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, so that with one heart and mouth you glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.” (Romans 15:5-7). * Also refer to 1 Corinthians 1:10, John 17:20-24, Ephesians 4:11-13, and 1 Peter 3:8.

“Who is this King of glory? …Rejoice greatly, fair Zion; Raise a shout, fair Jerusalem! Lo, your King is coming to you. He is victorious, triumphant, yet humble, riding on a donkey.” (Psalm 24; Zechariah 9:9)