2. What Is the Glory of God in the New Testament?

It flows out of the Old Testament and expands its meaning to include the Son and the Spirit.

Recall that Renewal Theologian J. Rodman Williams defines glory as follows: “radiant splendor and awesome majesty of God Himself” (vol. 1, p. 79).

Recall from the Old Testament post that the Hebrew word chabod means “honor” or “glory” that is connected with “dignity, wealth, or high position.” But commonly it is more theological: his “manifest presence.” Another Hebrew word is used about 50 times—tip’eret, which means “splendor” and “honor.” Hāḏār (or heḏārāh), used only five times, means the same thing.

The New Testament is written in Greek, and in that language the word is doxa (166 times), which has the same meaning as the Hebrew words.

Further, in the New Covenant Scriptures (New Testament) it can mean “human honor” (John 7:18, 12:43). It can mean “worldly splendor,” when Satan showed Jesus the kingdoms of the world (Matt. 4:8). Rom. 1:23 reminds us that humans can exchange the glory of God for idols (see Ps. 106:20, above). And it can mean “brilliance,” when the light shone on and blinded Saul / Paul (Acts 22:11). And when Stephen looked up, heaven opened, and he saw the glory of the Lord (Acts 7:55).

However, the most common usage is the theological meaning found in the Old Testament—the manifest presence.

The NIV is used here. If the reader would like to see the verses in context and in other translations, please go to biblegateway and type in the references.

1.. Jesus bore the “glory of the One and Only” Son.

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. 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)

The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being … (Heb. 1:3)

Radiance or light and glory are equated. Jesus is the ultimate manifestation of God’s glory.

2.. God is the Father of glory.

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father [Father of glory], may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. (Eph. 1:17)

This means his splendor and honor and dignity. He is the source of glory.

3.. Jesus is the Lord of glory.

None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. (1 Cor 2:8)

My brothers and sister, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ [Lord Jesus Christ of glory] … (James 2:1).

4.. The Spirit is glorious.

… [F]or the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. (1 Pet. 4:14)

This point and the preceding two show that the three persons of Trinity share glory in common.

5.. God’s splendor is revealed in heaven and in our new, glorified bodies.

There are also heavenly bodies and there are earthly bodies; but the splendor of the heavenly bodies is one kind, and the splendor of the earthly bodies is another. (1 Cor. 15:40)

Once again heavenly glory “leaks out” and changes us humans.

6.. Jesus’s transfiguration revealed God’s glory.

The word doxa is not mentioned here, but the presence of Moses signifies a greater glory or light in Jesus.

After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. (Matt. 17:1-3)

In that passage, the light of his glory indicates that heaven broke through to the earth.

7.. God is so glorious that doxologies are written for him.

Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
How unsearchable his judgments,
and his paths beyond tracing out!
34 “Who has known the mind of the Lord?
Or who has been his counselor?”
35 “Who has ever given to God,
that God should repay them?”
36 For from him and through him and for him are all things.
To him be the glory forever! Amen. (Rom. 11:33-36)

Next:

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ,who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Gal. 1:5)

Another doxology:

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen. (2 Pet. 3:18)

A doxology in heaven:

12 In a loud voice they were saying:

“Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,
to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength
and honor and glory and praise!”

13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying:

“To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
be praise and honor and glory and power,
for ever and ever!”

14 The four living creatures said, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped. (Rev. 5:12-13)

8.. God’s glory is manifested in his light, particularly in the New Jerusalem.

It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. (Rev. 21:11)

From the same chapter in the Revelation:

I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. 23 The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. 24 The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. 25 On no day will its gates ever be shut, for there will be no night there. 26 The glory and honor of the nations will be brought into it. (Rev. 21:23)

The New Testament carries over the theme of glory from the Old. But now it is clearly applied to the Lord Jesus and the Spirit—reinforcing the reality of the Triunity of God.

For a general conclusion to the glory of God, please click on What Does the Glory of God Mean to Us?

Written by James Malcolm

RELATED ARTICLES

1. The Glory of God in the Old Testament

2. What Is the Glory of God in the New Testament?

3. What Does the Glory of God Mean to Us?

Do I Really Know God? He Is Glorious

SOURCES

Works Cited at Renewal Theology

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