14 Dec Can We Really Give God More or Less Glory?
We discuss typically on this podcast about how God will get “more glory” or “most glory” by numerous matters. It is in the Wanting God slogan, of program: “God is most glorified in us when we are most glad in him.” So, we can conclude that despair will not exist in heaven, simply because we can give God far more glory without the need of it (APJ 30). And God receives extra glory in our struggle with sin than if we ended up created sinless instantly (APJ 33). And God will get far more glory in the harmony of diversity — in male and feminine genders and in his abundance of ethnicities — than he would get if we were being all the exact same (APJ 169 and 927). And Christ receives a lot more glory in the atonement than he would have if he did not consider up the cross (APJ 265). And Christ gets extra glory by defeating Satan at the cross than he would have by taking out Satan at a distance, like as a sniper (APJ 408). And God will get more glory from our prepared support than if he forced and coerced labor from us as “a tireless slave-labor force” (APJ 1432). On and on it goes.
With this history in area, we get a dilemma from Devin in Charlotte, North Carolina. “Hello, Pastor John, and thank you for this podcast and for your outstanding guides, significantly Providence, which I just browse and completed with fantastic delight. I have a query for you about discerning our depth of glorifying God. It seems central to Christian Hedonism — this plan that there are stages of glory that can be offered to God. There’s a way to provide him some glory. And then we can provide him more glory. And at times we can provide him most glory. Hence, ‘God is most glorified in us when we are most pleased in him.’ You appear to be to root a good deal of ethical conclusions in this gradation of accomplishing what most glorifies God. I went to the podcast archive and uncovered that you have described that we can honor God in three several states of feelings — when our affections are white-very hot, or cooled-off, even when our hearts drop into deep despair. But we glorify God most when our affections are white-hot. This was APJ 30. Wherever in Scripture do you find this gradation of glory? From what I see in the Bible, we possibly honor God or dishonor him glorify him or fall short to glorify him. It appears to be much more binary. But I believe you have put a whole lot more thought into this than I have. Thanks for any assist!”
Nicely, which is a sharp issue. I like that type of dilemma since it presses me into the Bible to see if my thoughts are in sync with God’s word. So the question is, Is there biblical warrant, justification, for talking of additional or much less glorifying of God, functions that extra or significantly less glorify God, alternatively than a very simple possibly-or: either we glorify him or we never — no gradations? Does the glorification of God by male materialize in levels — glorifying a lot more often, fewer often? Or is that an unbiblical way of considering? And is that the only way we need to communicate — namely, that we glorified God or we didn’t, with out speaking of levels or gradations of glorification?
Levels of Clarity
Now, Devin has a fantastic biblical ground for asking this since if you do the phrase search on all forms of formations of the term glory or a lot more or fewer or other diploma words and phrases, you do locate that the Bible does not really normally speak of God currently being presented additional or significantly less glory by his people. Nearly completely, it speaks of God staying glorified without having any references to levels of additional or significantly less. So why do I talk so often about God becoming more or less glorified?
And here’s the respond to. I’ll give a common response and then some biblical particulars. It fundamentally flows from inquiring, What does glorify indicate? I assume it indicates to show God to be wonderful. I think that is what glorify signifies: to present God to be glorious — that is, exhibit him to be fantastic or stunning or valuable. Or you could crack it down: exhibit him to be intelligent, potent, form, great, loving, just, holy, merciful, gracious, fulfilling. So, to glorify is to make distinct to many others what God is like, so as to seek out their praise and admiration of him, so that they join us in in search of to clearly show how good he is. Which is what glorify usually means, as I fully grasp it.
“To glorify is to make obvious to some others what God is like, so as to seek their praise and admiration of him.”
So at the time we trace the this means of glorify back again to points we do or experience or believe or say to make God glimpse wonderful, then it appears ideal to say that, considering that our carrying out and speaking and experience and thinking are a lot more or considerably less in accord with God’s really worth, from day to working day and from hour to hour, thus, our displaying God’s really worth will range in the way our acting and talking and feeling and thinking vary in the degree that they mirror God’s character. That’s generally my argument.
In other words, my talking of God acquiring much more or much less glory from my life of holiness and enjoy follows from the point that, biblically, my holiness and appreciate are increased or lesser from time to time. And so, I am demonstrating with bigger or considerably less clarity — or higher or less precision, or greater or significantly less fullness — the glory of God, simply because my actions is extra or fewer in accord with God’s character. That’s my simple comprehending of how degrees of glorification are rooted in levels of clarity that God’s character is seen in my degrees of holiness.
Now, let’s glimpse at some texts to see whether or not there seriously are biblical ideas to the legitimacy and helpfulness of conversing like this. Let us begin with degrees of glory when chatting about the progress of redemptive history. Second Corinthians 3:7–10:
Now if the ministry of loss of life, carved in letters on stone, came with such glory that the Israelites could not gaze at Moses’ confront mainly because of its glory, which was getting brought to an conclusion, will not the ministry of the Spirit have even extra glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness have to considerably exceed it in glory. Certainly, in this circumstance, what after experienced glory has arrive to have no glory at all, simply because of the glory that surpasses it.
So, it is not unbiblical to discuss of God’s acting through his persons in just one way to demonstrate considerably less of his glory, and in yet another way to display far more of his glory. And by inference, I would say, which is correct individually as properly.
Or look at 2 Corinthians 4:15:
It is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and a lot more folks it may well improve thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
Now, I imagine that implies that if thanksgiving boosts in your everyday living or in your church, God will get glory much more plainly, a lot more totally, than if thanksgiving were being not expanding in your daily life or in your church or else, I don’t see why Paul would refer to the boost of thanksgiving and then link it with the glory of God the way he does.
Or contemplate Philippians 1:9–11:
It is my prayer that your really like might abound extra and more, with understanding and all discernment so that you may perhaps approve what is exceptional, and so be pure and innocent for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that arrives by way of Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
Paul inbound links this incremental progress or increase of adore with his purpose that we be loaded with the fruit of righteousness “to the glory and praise of God.” So I draw from this that my development in adore, from one diploma to the next, is like the fantastic deeds — it is element of the superior deeds or is expressed in excellent deeds — that Jesus stated bring about persons to glorify God:
Let your light-weight glow right before other people, so that they may see your good performs and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:16)
So if my like abounds extra and extra, it looks that the correlation of what it is carried out for, what my deeds are finished for and my really like is shown for, would also be better namely, God is observed much more clearly to be superb for the reason that I have extra evidently reflected his character.
Participating the Coronary heart
Or what about Ephesians 5:18?
Do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery, but be crammed with the Spirit, addressing one one more in psalms and hymns and spiritual music, singing and building melody to the Lord with your coronary heart.
Now, what that indicates is that the engagement of our heart matters in whether our tunes of praise are fitting. Jesus claimed, “This individuals honors me with their lips, but their heart is much from me” (Matthew 15:8).
“As far more or significantly less of our hearts are engaged, we present, additional or fewer clearly, the worthiness of God to be liked.”
So it seems to me that the heart is a very variable resource of affections for God. The heart can be warm or cold or all variety of gradations in between. And Paul says this matters for the authenticity of our worship, and I would say that it matters for the diploma to which our worship conforms to the truly worth of God, and therefore the degree to how obviously he is proven to be our treasure in singing — that is, how clearly he is glorified.
The same thing could be claimed about the Fantastic Commandment, proper?
You shall really like the Lord your God with all your coronary heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your energy. (Mark 12:30)
As much more or significantly less of our hearts are engaged, we present, more or much less obviously, the worthiness of God to be loved.
Glorified in Gradations
So to wrap it up, let me consider Paul’s words and phrases when he speaks about his possess preaching the thriller of Christ, which features the truth of the matter that “Christ [is] in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27). He says, “[Pray] that I may possibly make it clear, which is how I should to speak” (Colossians 4:4).
So, he’s asking, “O God, would you put it in the hearts of the Colossians to pray for me that when I open my mouth, the secret of Christ, the glory of Christ, would be very clear? Paul understood that when he preached the glories of Christ, the unsearchable riches of Christ, occasionally they had been much more apparent than other times. That’s why he questioned for prayer. So he requested for the Colossians to pray that it may be more obvious, which is another way of inquiring for the objective that Christ would surface far more wonderful. So which is the way I consider about the gradations of glorifying Christ.