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

He shares it with us. It means everything to your life in Christ. Let is shine on you.

In the previous two posts on the glory of God in this three-part series, we read 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.

Here are Scriptures to explain how we share in God’s glory, by his graciously bestowing it on us.

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 in his humanity and humans are crowned with glory and honor.

Heb. 2:6-8 quotes Ps. 8:4-6 (see above). Yet the most interesting reality of those verses is that Jesus became a man, so he too was crowned with the same glory and honor, even to the point of the death we suffer:

But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. (Heb. 2:9)

2.. The glory of God is revealed in the church.

To him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Eph. 3:21)

This verse lines up with John 17:22, next, which says Jesus gives his church his glory.

3.. He gives us his glory, so we can be unified.

“I have given them the glory that you gave me that they may be one as we are one” (John 17:22).

It does not say “some of his glory,” but simply the same glory Jesus has. This is a prayer that is based on his future glory that he receives at his ascension and enters heaven. But in our time, the Church Age, Jesus receives our glory back because of God’s and Jesus’s unity. “Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them, even as you have loved me” (v. 23). God’s love for Jesus = God’s love for us.

4.. God’s Spirit fill his temple, the church.

In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit. (Eph. 2:21-22; cf. 1 Cor. 3:16-17)

Those verses do not mention the word doxa as such, but they parallel God’s glory filling the Old Testament temple (see 1 Kings 8:10-11).

5.. We are changed from glory to glory (ever-increasing glory).

And we all, who with unveiled face contemplate the Lord of glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. (2 Cor. 3:18)

Contemplating Jesus in the glory of heaven can change us.

6.. The glory of God opens up financial blessings.

In the context of money Paul writes: “And my God shall meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:19).

Jesus is in heaven and has all the glory. Through him God wishes to meet our needs—all of them—through the riches that are in glory in Christ—not in you or me—right now. We have access to this limitless supply.

7.. Our present suffering cannot equal God’s eternal glory.

“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (1 Cor. 4:17).

Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. (Rom. 8:17)

8.. When we suffer insults, the Spirit of glory rests on us.

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 Pet. 4:14)

The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit share the attribute of glory.

9.. At Christ’s second coming, we will be with him in glory.

When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. (Col. 3:4)

10.. Christ second coming will be glorious.

[W]hile we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. (Titus 2:13)

How does this post help me know God better?

God shares the attribute with us. He grants humankind dignity and honor.

Sometimes in both the Old and New Testaments it is associated with God’s monetary provision and wealth. The reason is that humankind comes alive fully when his needs are met and even enjoys a surplus of money by which he can help others. Earthly glory is when human live together in prosperity and joy. This is a deficient and pale reflection of God’s heaven glory. But humans must be careful because Satan showed Jesus all the splendor of the worldly kingdoms, and he refused it.

Most often, however, God’s glory means his manifest presence and light. God’s glory filled the temple and was present during the sacrificial system. Through Israel’s trek in desert the glory of God manifested in the cloud, and even was so intense that it was a consuming fire. Sometimes people reacted to an abundance of his manifested glory by not being able even to function.

In Rev. 21 God’s glory served as the light. This light was reflected when it broke through at the Mount of Transfiguration when Jesus, Moses, and Elijah met together and they appeared transfigured to Peter, James, and John.

Just before the second coming, God will save his people and bring in many nations, and his second coming itself will be glorious.

Bottom line: God’s glory is a communicable or shareable attribute that signifies dignity and honor and splendor and light and presence, all manifest in himself and in his people and in any place where God designates.

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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