Glory People // Part 1
This week, we are going to begin a new series called “Glory People.” It will take more than one Sunday, but the title — “Glory People” — is important. You see, God’s plan is to reveal His glory. You are the object of that revelation. You will see the glory of God! We are not called to be “good people” – we are “glory people” to whom the glory is manifest and we live in that! God manifest Himself to people all throughout the Bible. Those many manifestations could be and have been the subject of many studies.
Each manifestation of God carries with it an attendant glory. Some would try to argue with me about this because there are times when God appears in some form without what we commonly recognize as “the glory” – or the attendant manifestations we’ve come to associate with “the glory.” To better understand this, let’s define the biblical word most often used to describe God’s glory:
Hebrew word “kabhodh” – weight or heaviness. Primarily used of some external, physical manifestation of God’s being.
Greek word “doxa” – the original rendering for “kabhodh”.
In a number of passages, it is difficult to know whether God’s glory refers to His actual glory or to human recognition of it. This is important. If you study the manifestations of God to people in the Bible – outside of the Garden of Eden – most manifestations of God included fire, smoke, clouds, etc. These are the accompaniments to the manifestation of God that we have become most familiar with and to which we associate most “God” appearances. Today, we associate gold, gems, feathers, cloud, oil with the appearance of God’s glory, however the glory of God manifests itself with all the accompaniments which the Bible describes with such richness, but the accompaniments are not the glory. You see, God’s glory exists prior to any external manifestations of it. God’s glory stands whether we “see” it or not. This is important for us or we will constantly be living in a state of frustration. In one of the most famous passages about the glory, Isaiah heard this in His revelation of God:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!” /// Isaiah 6:3
The angels of God shouted that the entire earth is FULL of the glory of God. But, we don’t recognize it because we can’t see it. In other words, it doesn’t manifest itself to us in the forms we most associate with it! The Bible tells us that Jesus is the “brightness of the Father’s glory.” We see that in Hebrews, chapter one and in this passage from John 1:14:
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.
Did Jesus walk around with gold dust falling from His clothing or did He leave gems in His pathway? No, He looked maddingly ordinary. But, He was full of the glory of God! When we read passages like Isaiah, chapter six and Psalm 19:1 – “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows forth His handiwork,” we understand that God’s glory is not just manifest in imagery but in the ordinary as well. Messiah came to reveal the Father and His glory to us. This revelation and its distinguishing characteristic(s) is the manifestation of Jesus in His sanctuary. One final thing about the manifestation of the glory of God: you cannot have a true manifestation of the glory of God without essential characteristics of God’s being. When the true glory of God is manifest, it always carries an ethical significance we have come to know as holiness. Remember what the angels cried out in Isaiah six? All manifestations of God will have holiness as part of the glory.
So, manifestations of God’s glory can be supernatural but more often than not, are revealed in the ordinary. And, there are aspects of God’s glory that we see and some that are not manifested, but they still exist where we live! Next time, we’ll look at the most intimate way God manifests Himself according to the Word.
- Isaiah 6:3
- John 1:14
- Psalm 19:1
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