The Glory of God 6

Acts 17:22 So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects. 23 “For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you.

It is exalted and biblical ideas of God will lead us to the truth about worship and living for God’s glory rather than stressing the need for good works. It is a fact that true faith will be accompanied by good works, but it is also true that the unregenerate heart which hates God can also do externally good works. Apart from union with Christ and Christ living His life in the soul, there is no possibility of truly good works done out of love for God. True worship is when people are drawn up in amazement and adoration of the living God, which clearly demands for people to know the truth of God and such a God is beyond our comprehension, though indeed we can apprehend more and more for all eternity.

The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever, which clearly teaches us that the very goal and purpose of our being is to glorify God. But how can a person purposefully glorify God unless that person knows God and has tasted something of His glory? In order for man to live and love in such a way that he is pursuing the glory of God and actually glorifying God in truth and love, that man must know God and be acquainted with who God is and how He does all for His own glory.

It is not in the hands of men or in their power to know God. Instead, God must reveal Himself to man by grace. Man must know God by revelation instead of man devising his own ways to know God. The very zenith point of the revelation of God is in and through Jesus Christ, or one could even say Jesus Christ is the very revelation of God. John 1:14 teaches us that “the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” It is Christ Himself in whom we are enabled to behold His glory. It is in Christ that we can see something of the glory of God. It is Christ who is “the way, the truth, and the life.” This teaches us that Christ is the way to the Father and the way to all the truth of God that we can know. It is Christ who is the very manifestation of the truth of who God is and He taught us the truth of who God is. It is Christ who is the very life that we must have. If we think of Christianity as the life of God in the soul of man (an old, old book by Henry Scougal), then Christ is that life as we are taught so many times in Scripture.

In Chapter 8 of the Westminster Confession of Faith, it speaks of Of Christ the Mediator. It tells us that “It pleased God, in His eternal purpose, to choose and ordain the Lord Jesus, His only begotten Son, to be the Mediator between God and man, the Prophet, Priest, and King, the Head and Savior of His church, the Heir of all things, and Judge of the world: unto whom He did from all eternity give a people, to be his seed, and to be by him in time redeemed, called, justified, sanctified, and glorified.” God has revealed Himself through Jesus Christ as the Mediator. God has revealed Christ as Mediator and in doing so He has set forth His eternal purposes of Christ to be the only Mediator between God and man. It is Christ that God displays His glory in and through as the Prophet, Priest, and King of the Church. It is in Christ that God sets forth and shines forth His glory in Christ who is the Head and Savior of all things. The Gospel of Christ and the Gospel of the glory of Christ is also the Gospel of the glory of God in the face of Christ. The Gospel is primarily about the glory of God, the Church is primarily about the glory of God, and each saved sinner is saved to the glory of God.

God is only truly known when He is manifested and revealed in Christ. He is hidden to sinners apart from some basic attributes seen in nature other than in Christ. If we are going to know God and His glory, we cannot just study Him in some philosophical manner, but we must study Him as revealed in Christ. After all, it is Christ who is the perfect image of God and it is Christ who is the very shining forth of the glory of the Father. The wonder of eternal life is in knowing God and His Son, yet we can only know the Father through the Son and as revealed by the Son. When people want to know God and yet do not pursue a knowledge of Him through the Son, their methodology will only end in error. The evil one wants people to pursue a knowledge of God apart from the Son and according to their own wisdom and crooked hearts. He has them in his hands when they do that. They will worship and unknown God in ignorance apart from the truth of God found in Christ.

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