“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament heralds the work of his hands.” In this verse, we understand that when creatures such as humans see the heavens God created, they notice his general greatness, his glory.” (Psalm 19: 1)
Traditionally, Glory is the manifestation of God, the realisation of his presence, an event that cannot be reduced simply to an ‘image’ or a vision because God is pure power and his revelation is always compelling and upsetting. The Hebrew expression for Gloria ( כָּבֹד ), as we well know, recalls the ‘weight,’ thus also communicating the ‘cumbersome’ space that God occupies upon entering human history. For this reason, the theophanies that we can take from Is 6 or Ez 1 reaffirmed how the Temple was ‘full’ of the Glory of God. God burst, almost occupying the space, and being in his presence was at least difficult, if not impossible.
The dictionary definition of “glory” is often the following: great praise, splendour, and honour. God’s glory is the splendour that comes from him. God manifested “His Glory” through concrete actions such as that of creation, of providence, of the grace he bestowed on us, of his blessings and promises for our life, in the plan of redemption through his Son Jesus Christ, and the reconciliation to Him as His children in His Glory.
What does the Bible say about the Glory of God?
We want to fully understand the primary meaning of “The Glory of God.” It indicates the recognition of the nature and acts of God both in the manifestation of himself and in what he essentially is, namely “The beginning and the end, the ‘Alpha and Omega. He is who he is, when he always was, and always will be—the Creator of all things.
The Bible asserts in Proverbs 25: 2: “It is the glory of God to hide things, and the glory of kings lies in investigating them. ” Here, the glory of God is manifested through the mystery of things. This means that he is even more significant when there is a mystery behind God. At the same time, human beings receive glory when they investigate hidden things.
Overall, God’s glory is used in various ways in Scripture. It can refer to God’s greatness, honour, beauty, power, and light. In any case, the glory of God recognises his supreme strength and our need to acknowledge and serve him.
Representation of the Glory of God
10 Facts about the Glory of God
John Owen presents in the form of a meditation ten aspects of the glory of God that every believer can contemplate in the light of the Holy Scriptures.
1. The glory of God as God’s only representative to believers.
“It is in Christ alone that we can clearly and in detail the glory of God and all his perfections. […] To see this glory is the only way to obtain the holiness, the consolation, and the preparation necessary for eternal glory.
So pay attention to what God has known about himself in his Son, particularly wisdom, love, goodness, grace, and mercy. The life of our souls depends on it. As the Lord Christ is the only way, we have been given to obtain blessings, how glorious He should be in the eyes of believers!“
2. The glory of God revealed by the mystery of his two natures
“The glory of the two natures of Christ in one person is so great that the unbelieving world cannot see the light and beauty radiating from it. Many today deny the truth that Jesus Christ is both Son of God and the Son of man. Yet it is the glory into which “ the angels long to gaze” ( 1 Peter 1:12 )
In his pride, Satan rose against God in heaven and then tried to destroy human beings on earth, created in the image of God. In his great wisdom, God united in his Son these two natures against which Satan had sinned.
Christ, the God-man, triumphed over Satanusingf his death on the cross. This is the foundation of the Church. In creating the world, God “ suspends the earth on nothingness .” ( Job 26.7 ) But he founded his Church on this immutable rock: “ You are the Christ, the Son of the living God .” ( Matthew 16.16 ). “
“Our thoughts should turn to Christ whenever possible in a day.
If we are true believers, and if the word of God occupies our thoughts, Christ is near to us (see Romans 10:8 ). We will find that he is willing to talk to and communicate with us.“
3. The Glory of God as Mediator: His Humility
“I urge you […] intensely to meditate by faith on the unique dual nature of Christ, with constant and practical determination.
As Christians, we must deny ourselves and be willing to take up our cross.
This is impossible without carefully considering how the Son of God denied himself (see Philippians 2:5-8 ).
What are the things of this world, even our loved ones and our own lives, which must soon come to an end, compared to the glory of God when he came to humble himself on this earth? When we start to think about these things, we quite quickly reach the stage where we abandon our human reason. I want to be brought to this stage every day. When we find the object of our faith too great and glorious for our understanding, we are filled with holy admiration, humble adoration, and joyful thanksgiving.“
4. The Glory of God as Mediator: His Love
“If Christ became mediator, it is primarily because of the love of the Father, who chose to save countless human beings through the shed blood of Christ. Moreover, they are sanctified by the Spirit. God being love, all communication he maintains with men must be done in love. There was absolutely nothing in them that could make God love them. Any good thing that can be found in a person is attributable to this great love of God. The love of God is the eternal source from which the Church draws its life through Christ.
Now consider the love of the Son, which is full of compassion. Although we are sinful creatures, we could be restored. God has chosen us to express his divine goodness and love.
Christ took our flesh and blood, and we have the nature of angels. He looked forward with great joy to the salvation of mankind which would so glorify God.“
5. The Glory of God as Mediator: His Obedience
“Christ’s obedience to every part of the law was perfect. The law was glorious when the finger wrote the ten commandments of God. It appears even more exquisite when kept in the hearts of believers. But it is only in the absolute and perfect obedience of Christ that we can fully see the glory of God’s holiness in the law.
“ He learned obedience though he was a Son by what he suffered ” ( Hebrews 5:7-8 ). The Lord of all, who created us, lived in strict obedience to the entire law of God. He was such an exceptional person that his observation is marked with the glory of his excellent person.“
6. The Glory of God as Mediator: His Exalted Position
“We are all very selfish and content to know our sins forgiven and saved by Christ. But our faith and love should cause us to put Christ and his interests before everything.
Who is he who today is surrounded with glory and power at the right hand of the majesty of the Highest? He is the one who was poor, despised, persecuted, who was killed for us.
It is the same Jesus who loved and gave himself for us an,d redeemed us with his own. If we value his love at its just value and share in all the benefit procured for us by his work and his suffering for his Church, we can only rejoice in his present state and his glory.“
7. The Glory of God Illustrated in the Old Testament
“The promises and prophecies concerning the person of Christ, his coming, his kingdom, and his glory, are like a lifeline running through the Old Testament.
Christ explained these things and the wisdom, grace, and love of God for the Church in him to his disciple from the writings of Moses and all the prophets (see Luke 24.27, 44-46 ). We will not benefit from reading the Old Testament unless we seek the glory of God in its pages and meditate upon it.”
8. The Glory of God in His Union with the Church
“Consider the righteousness of God manifested in the remission of sins. All of God’s elect are sinners. But how is it fair for God to allow them to avoid punishment, since he did not spare the angels who sinned, nor Adam when he first sinned? The answer lies in the union between Christ and the Church.
Since Christ represents the Church in the eyes of God, God justly punishes him for all their sins, so they are freely and graciously forgiven (see Romans 3:24-26 ).
God’s holiness and justice met his grace and mercy at the cross. God’s righteousness and justice met his grace and compassion at the cross. This glory delights the hearts and satisfies the souls of all who believe. Seeing that God delights in His justice while showing mercy and giving them eternal salvation is lovely! Let me live in the light of this glorious truth, and let me die in this faith.”
9. Christ’s Glory Revealed in Giving Himself to Believers
“The apostle Paul describes the fact that Christ gave himself for the Church and the union between them as a great mystery (see Ephesians 5:32 ). Nevertheless, although it is a mystery, we can still consider that relationship in which each believer can say: “ My beloved is mine, and I am his; he feeds his flock among the lilies ” ( Song of Songs 2.16 ).
We must understand that Christ does not give himself to us because he is forced to do so. Nor does he come to us as a dream. Nor does it become ours when eaten in Holy Communion. He gives himself to believers in a unique way. […] The goodness, grace, life, light, mercy, and power that originated the new creation are all found in God. The purpose of the new product, the Church, is to manifest the glory of God in how he reveals himself to it and through them to others. […]
The glorious existence of God as Trinity is seen in the divine order in which life is given to the Church. The eternal source of all wisdom, grace, goodness, and all love is the Father. These divine qualities were found in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, who communicated them to the Church in every age and gave her life, each in his time and season, to the glory of God.“
10. The Glory of God Revealed in Gathering All Things Into Himself
“In the first creation, which was glorious, all things depended directly on God and the law of obedience to him.
It was a fragile unit, dependent on the will of the creatures to obey their creator.
But in the new creation, all things, including every believer, have been gathered into Christ, the head. It is an indivisible unit. Those whose eternal security entirely depends on Christ can no longer fall from the rest they find in him.“
The claiming of the glory of God is the basis of our salvation, and the exaltation of the glory of God is the object of our salvation. After Life through His Death and The Perseverance of the Saints, here is John Owen’s third and final book, translated by Sembeq Editions: The Glory of Christ. The last work of the theologian (1684) offers a reflection on the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, whose knowledge is preferable to any other form of wisdom or intelligence.
Indeed, Owen states: “An unbroken vision of the glory of God will have the blessed effect of changing us more and more into the likeness of God. We may have tried other ways to become like God, but without success. Let’s put this one to the test. … Only an uninterrupted contemplation of God and His glory will move us and encourage us to watch and fight without ceasing against the allurements of sin. Subjectively experiencing the different aspects of God’s glory has the power to make us desire exclusively those things that please Him.“