Friday, December 22, 2017

Worthy of ALL Glory

"Glory to God in the Highest" were the first words the angel multitude declared when appearing to the shepherds at Christmas to announce the birth of Jesus.  The angels were absolutely right.  Christmas is the beginning of God's incredible gift to man and shows His ultimate and eternal glory.  Simply stated, He is worthy of all glory.

The whole Christmas story only points to the nature of an awesome, amazing God who  
(1) has such love for "all men" that He is willing to become one of us,
(2)  walks as we walk experiencing every weakness, trial, and joy,
(3)  teaches the truth about the nature of God in the midst of man's incredible pride and resistance,  
(4)  demonstrates an all-consuming love that willingly lays down His life and pours out His blood to pay for every sin,           
(5)  concludes with a glorious, definitive resurrection that establishes His total victory over sin, sickness, and death,           
(6)  and rather than condemn man, invites all men to receive His gift and join Him forever in overcoming, abundant life!  Good News of great joy to all men!

Clearly we have a God who shows His greatness (glory) through a completely inconceivable plan that is so beyond the imagination of man, and that only can be humanly understood by God revealing His nature through Jesus Christ's coming and living among us.  Man's darkened mind has a difficult time grasping such a wonderful, loving God paying such an incredible price for us and then, instead of rejecting us, remarkably invites us to receive His Son.  Receiving Jesus and what He did provides complete forgiveness and allows us to be changed into His children, to be like His Son.  To selfish, proud, sinful man, this seems too good to be true, and frankly, so many million times better than we know we deserve.  Only God's glory explains it.

Once man receives this truth and accepts that Jesus is God's lamb, or sacrifice for our failures, that person's heart is changed forever to want to please Him, let Him be Lord.  2 Corinthians 5:14 points out that "He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again."  Now we are able to fulfill God's actual purpose for man, which is stated in Ephesians 1, we are destined and appointed to live for the praise of His glory.  Paul further instructs us in 1 Corinthians 10:31, that "whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."

So how do we live for His glory, or give glory to a God who has given us everything?  Jesus answered the question in John 15, 7-8: "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.  By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples."  God wants us to be fruitful.  He is pleased to do things for us, to answer our heart's desires and prayers.  The good soil, in which seeds grow and bear fruit, is the condition of abiding in Him and letting His words live in our hearts and minds. In short, when we desire for and need to have His presence, and choose to let His Word be the truth and standard for our thoughts and actions.

My heart's desire is simply to be fruitful, which gives Him glory. 

Forever, in heaven, as our eyes and understanding are opened, we will join in the chorus, "Holy, holy, holy," and bow before Him in total, awesome worship.  He is worthy!  The challenge is to live by this truth now, by faith rather than sight.  He is worthy of all glory.

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