Glory of God

Published on Mar 7th, 2013 by Pastor Ed Hlad | 0

 

The other day I was driving to work listening to a well known radio preacher.  He is one of the good guys and has been used by God in mighty ways.  That morning’s message bothered me though.  He began by speaking of how we all long for significance.  In other words, we all long to matter somehow.  He then went on to teach how we must give up trying to find our significance in anything or anyone but God.  I understand the point but I wonder if we are robbing God of a piece of his glory when we think through issues in this manner?

 

The first thing that should grab our attention is if these thoughts originate in the Word of God.  The premise that all men need significance and security comes to us through the observations of prominent psychiatrists.    That should mean something to us.  What has happened is that men have made this observation and it seems to be truth so because we are Christians and believe all truth is in the Word of God or that all truth is God’s truth then we must be able to find it in Scripture.  So we go to Scriptures and even though we cannot directly find it, we believe it to be such a good observation, that we then simply say that we must receive our significance from God.  We never stop to think if our presuppositions are wrong.  We never stop to listen to God first.

 

What we would we hear if we allowed God to speak first?  We would hear him say that man’s issue is that he has fallen and is totally and utterly effected by his sin.  After hearing this we would be forced to conclude that our need for significance has been born of this sinful nature.  Therefore, I do not need to come to God to find my significance, I must come to God to be forgiven of my need for significance.  My desire to feel like someone or something is born of my self centered sinful nature.  That nature is corrupt and vile and I do not want to find in God something that is vile and corrupt.  Think about it.  If this was such an important issue, wouldn’t God have addressed it directly?  Instead, God very directly addresses that we come to Him, through Jesus, to receive forgiveness of my sin.

 

Here is the beautiful part.  As I come to him broken and humbled by the recognition that he has given me of my sin, he then forgives me through the work of Jesus on the cross.  In addition to that forgiveness he then dresses me in the righteous life of Jesus, he adopts me into his family forever, and he gives me gifts so that I can serve him faithfully.  Out of his glory and grace he gives me purpose, meaning, and security.

 

The difference here is very important.  I do not come to God to fulfill my sinful desire for significance and security.  I do not come to God to build myself up and make myself feel better about myself.  I come to God, according to the Scriptures, because I am dead in my sin and I need forgiveness and life.  As I place my faith in Jesus’ work on the cross and I ask for forgiveness he gives and provides that forgiveness through Jesus.  It is then that he further blesses me with all spiritual blessings.  To seek those things to build myself up or to make myself feel better robs God of some of his glory.  That should never happen.

 

Can I ask you to think of something else that fits with these thoughts?  When we come to Jesus to fulfill sinful desires such as a lust for significance and security what happens when trials come and God tests our faith?  We have not come to Jesus humbly but selfishly.  That kind of faith will not weather the trials of true faith.  We will be angry and feel as if we have been attracted by one thing and then given something else.  If you think about it, this selfish attitude permeates Christianity.  We are no longer humbled, grateful people who were once dead and now have been made alive but we are consumers who have come to Jesus to fulfill our sinful desires.  You see this in our demands for more entertaining worship, more facilities that make us comfortable, more people and staff at churches to serve us…it goes on and on.  We are robbing God of his glory by making all things, even coming to Jesus, about our sinful desires rather than our sin need.  Let us stop making all things about ourselves and rather seek his glory in all things.

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