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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : The Glory of the Lord

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OverSeer
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Joined: 2006/7/15
Posts: 153
Geneva, Alabama

 The Glory of the Lord

"But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the [i]glory of the Lord[/i], are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:18).

According to this verse, the saints of God are sanctified (transformed) by beholding [i]the Lord's glory[/i]. It is then that the Holy Spirit transforms or changes us into the same image that we are adoring or beholding.

"And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has blinded they minds of the unbelieving, so that they might not see the light of the gospel of [i]the glory of Christ[/i], who is the image of God" (2 Corinthians 4:3-4)

According to this verse, sinners are either saved by beholding the Lord's glory or they perish for not having seen the Lord's glory.

So, saints are sanctified by beholding the Lord's glory and sinners are saved by beholding the Lord's glory. Then what is it that all worship services and all evangelism ought to focus on? Isn't the obvious answer: the glory of the Lord?

Does the gospel declare my worth? Does it declare my value? Does John 3:16 tell me how valuable I am or how glorious He is? If I read John 3:16 rightly, then doesn't it tell me that I am so wretched that the only way that God could save me was to "give His only begotten Son"? Doesn't that verse declare His glory and not mine?

What does this truth that the gospel reveals the Lord's glory and not ours do for how we present the gospel? Do we present the cross of Christ to someone as though it is giving testimony to his or her great value? Isn't just the opposite true? Doesn't the cross of Christ testify of His greatness and worth and our utter wretchedness? "Christ died for the ungodly!"

A man-centered view of the gospel is only philosophical humanism and is a false gospel of the worth and glory of man instead of the worth and glory of God who, "demonstrates His own love toward us, [i]in that while we were yet[/i] [i][b]sinners[/b][/i], Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8).

Grace and peace
Olan


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Olan Strickland

 2006/8/16 16:36Profile
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Joined: 2005/4/19
Posts: 772
Michigan

 Re: The Glory of the Lord

Brother Olan,
I completely agree. It saddens me when I hear how Jesus died to give us a better life, or whatever the benefit to us is. I always remind myself, that it was for God's Glory that Christ came and died, and how undeserving I am that I should be called a child of God. The fact that He chose me in spite of my sin, Glorifies Him even more because it is all because of Him and has nothing to do with me. Thank you for sharing this.


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Melissa

 2006/8/16 16:46Profile
figtreelives
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Joined: 2006/3/15
Posts: 12


 Re:

May the Glory of the Lord Rise Upon Us.

Yes brother but please let us also not forget that Jesus sat with sinners and that he came to save the lost. Jesus speaking to the Pharisee when questioned why do you sit with sinners, his reply was, I have come for those who need a doctor not those who think they are good enough, now go and learn what this scripture means. I desire mercy and not sacrifice.

 2006/8/16 18:03Profile
OverSeer
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Joined: 2006/7/15
Posts: 153
Geneva, Alabama

 Re:

Quote:
Yes brother but please let us also not forget that Jesus sat with sinners and that he came to save the lost.



Very good point! The gospel isn't man-centered in the fact that it does not declare man's worth and glory but the Lord's worth and glory. And to be saved men have to see their "sick condition" which is magnified by His glory and goodness. So there is contact with sinful man - there is a social aspect to spreading the gospel - but it is never to degenerate into a "social-gospel."

We do not separate ourselves by entering monasteries or nunneries nor do we contaminate ourselves by becoming like the world. Neither of those extremes reveal the glory of the Lord. We are to have contact without contamination. Yes, we eat with sinners, not so we can declare their glory, but so we can declare His!

I like what God told Paris Reidhead - "I didn't send you out there for them; I sent you out there for Me. Do I not deserve the reward of My suffering; don't I deserve those for whom I died?"

Grace and peace
Olan


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Olan Strickland

 2006/8/17 9:36Profile
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Joined: 2006/7/15
Posts: 153
Geneva, Alabama

 Re: The Glory of the Lord and Repentance

It is beholding the glory of the Lord that leads men to repentance. It is then, when a person sees the Lord's glory, that he or she sees the contrast between how good and great He is and how wretched and evil he or she is. This brings about a brokenness and sorrow of divine dimensions. The sinner no longer trusts in his or her own goodness but pours contempt on all pride. He or she falls out of love with self - self has now been revealed for what it really is (wicked) from the mirror of the Lord's glory - and he or she now falls in love with Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory! The sinner now treasures Christ above all things. He or she is not concerned about going to heaven to escape hell; he or she is interested in going to heaven to see Jesus - the One whom is worthy.

John Piper in his book, [i]God is the Gospel[/i], said, "Christ did not die to forgive sinners who go on treasuring anything above seeing and savoring God. And people who would be happy in heaven if Christ were not there, will not be there. The gospel is not a way to get people to heaven; it is a way to get people to God....If we don't want God above all things, we have not been converted by the gospel" (pg.47).

"Repentance of sin is a sorrow arising from the sight of God's excellency and mercy" (Jonathan Edwards, "The Pleasantness of Religion," in [i]The Sermons of Jonathan Edwards: A Reader[/i] (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1999), 15.)

Do we not know that the goodness of God leads us to repentance (Romans 2:4)?

Grace and peace
Olan


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Olan Strickland

 2006/8/19 15:20Profile









 Re: The Glory of the Lord

Quote:
Doesn't the cross of Christ testify of His greatness and worth and our utter wretchedness? ....

[b]A man-centered view of the gospel is only philosophical humanism and is a false gospel of the worth and glory of man instead of the worth and glory of God who, "demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us"[/b] (Romans 5:8).

Thank you, Olan, for thrashing this a bit more finely for me. I enjoyed your further exposition very much.

How subtley the gospel can be made of 'none effect' in the hands of those who don't really believe it!

 2006/8/20 9:33
OverSeer
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Joined: 2006/7/15
Posts: 153
Geneva, Alabama

 Re:

Dorcas wrote:

Quote:
How subtley the gospel can be made of 'none effect' in the hands of those who don't really believe it!



This subtlety of making the gospel man-centered, declaring the worth and glory of man, rather than it being God-centered, declaring the worth and glory of God, is, I believe, the difference between the narrow gate true gospel and the wide gate false gospel that Jesus warned about in Matthew 7:13-14.

The distortion of divine love into an endorsement of self-admiration is subtle - and deadly. Many are willing to be so-called "God-centered" as long as God is man-centered and useful to them. They are willing to boast in the cross as long as the cross is a witness to their worth - which it isn't; it is a witness to His worth and our unworthiness.

If the gospel witnesses to my worth and in it God has made me the center of attention, then I will be worshiped in heaven. If the gospel witnesses to Jesus' worth and in it God has made Him the center of attention, then He will be worshiped in heaven.

To Him be the glory forever. Amen!

Grace and peace
Olan


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Olan Strickland

 2006/8/21 13:03Profile





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