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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Want to Give Glory to God?

Giving glory to God is something every Christian does to some degree whether or not they are aware. But having a conscious awareness and desire to give God glory magnifies our holy God. It is also good for His children. Let’s see why and how.

Is God’s Glory Important?

I watched my nine-year-old grandson, Raf, create his own version of a computer game and was amazed at a third grader’s computer skills (which I didn’t have). I exclaimed, "Raf, you are amazing!”

Raf immediately replied, "No. Only God is amazing."

I was thrilled to hear his comment. Raf had inadvertently given God the glory He deserves. And his comment reminded me of my own desire to give God glory.

The word “glory” is mentioned 91 times in the New Testament epistles alone, which doesn’t even include the numerous variations like “glorious.”

How Do We Reflect His Glory?

We reflect His majesty to others like a microscope and a telescope.

A microscope magnifies a smaller object making it appear bigger. As we glorify the Lord, our responses cause him to appear “bigger” (powerful, real, and loving).

Paul writes, it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. Philippians 1:20 ESV. The word “honored” is also translated “magnified” and “exalted.”

Likewise, the telescope magnifies a distant object as clearer and nearer. As we respond in life to difficult situations with bold love, patience, and wisdom, we represent God’s holy nature.

But the primary way we give God glory is to purify more and more our heart’s motives. Out of the Spirit-purified well of our heart’s condition, we will know more freely and wisely how God wants to use us to exalt and magnify His holy nature.

What Is God’s Glory?

God’s glory can be described in many ways but it refers to the pure and holy nature of God which only God can “be” completely. We only need to see the perfect life of God’s redeeming Son Jesus to know God’s stunning glory.

When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him. And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.’ John 17:1-4 ESV

Jesus is God Himself and on earth He was an exact representation of God the Father. Although we will never represent God perfectly like Jesus did, He still wants to use us. What a glorious calling. And in God’s generosity, He shares His glory by changing us to be more like Him. The Apostle Paul writes at least two times specifically about the results of being motivated to bring God glory. And those results, in turn, bring God glory.

In his second letter to the Thessalonians, he writes, To this end we always pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling and may fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by his power, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12 ESV

Paul uses the word “resolve” (ESV) to indicate a desire (NIV, NASB) for “good and every work of faith” (vs. 11) in order to have God glorified (vs. 12). “Resolve” in the Greek can also be translated as “prompts” (NLT), and other words indicating motive. In other words, the more we are motivated to desire God’s glory, the more we’ll take hold of the Holy Spirit’s inner impulse to cooperate with him, knowing it will glorify God and bless us. “Good” (vs. 11) refers not just to others but our benefit.

Who wouldn’t want the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23): love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control? Philippians 1:11 tells us those “fruit(s) of righteousness” bring glory to God.

God is so good and generous that He has designed for us to glorify Him, to bring deserved honor to Him, but also to bring benefit to us. Both can motivate us to be aware of how we can purify our lives to represent Him with trust, praise, and love.

Copyright © Kathy Collard Miller 2017. Used by permission.

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