The Glory of God 17

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.

Isaiah 66:1 Thus says the LORD, “Heaven is My throne and the earth is My footstool. Where then is a house you could build for Me? And where is a place that I may rest? 2 “For My hand made all these things, Thus all these things came into being,” declares the LORD. “But to this one I will look, To him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.

The beauty and majesty of the self-existence of God shines in and through Christ. God has and does reveal Himself in and through Christ as the pinnacle or zenith of His self-revelation to man. This may not seem obvious on the surface of the matter, but it is Christ Himself who tells us that “For just as the Father has life in Himself, even so He gave to the Son also to have life in Himself” (John 5:26). For one to have life in Himself is to have a self-existent life to which no one can add to or take away. It is the Lord Jesus who spoke directly to the Pharisees and told them that “before Abraham was born, I AM” (John 8:58).

Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities– all things have been created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.

In light of the text just above, we can see that everything that there is or ever came into being was created through Christ and for Him. This is a profound truth that no finite being can explore the full depths of. God, the triune God, is self-existent within Himself, which is to say that He is self-existent within the Trinity. The one and true God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit and the wonder, beauty, and glory of self-existence is beheld in Christ in an especial way. Self-existence shines in and through Christ both in His Person and in His works. If God is not self-existent and that does not shine forth in Christ, then how can heaven be so for all eternity? If God is not self-existent, then to whom do we look for life? That would also mean that He would have to trust in someone or something out that has the power of life.

Something or Someone holds the universe in existence and holds it in precisely the perfect way so that all things function and operate precisely as God has created it to do. It is in Christ that all things hold together. It is because all things are in Christ that nothing can function or operate outside of His sovereign power. It is in Christ that all things happen are according to the Divine plan and as such hold together in His Divine power and wisdom. It is in Christ that there is not one rogue molecule (quoting R.C Sproul) much less anything else that can possibly operate apart from His sovereign will. The self-existence of God in Christ declares to us that He alone can uphold the universe in Christ and He alone can sustain all things in Christ.

Would heaven be eternal and full of joy if there is no self-existent and self-sufficient One who upholds all things? Where does joy, love and life come from if not from Him? How can we know that we will have eternal life for eternity if Christ who is life does not have self-existent life? How will we know that He will love us for eternity if He does not have the power of life and self-existent life in Himself? Where can true joy and love come from if they are not part of eternal life and are not sustained by Him who has the very power of life in Himself? How can we ever know that we will have those things if Christ Himself does not have life in Himself because it is in Christ and only in Christ that we exist and move and have every breath? How can we ever be sure that we will have Christ forever and have all things from Him forever if He is not self-existent? This is another way of saying that we must know God in Christ and it is only in Christ that we will see and behold the exquisite glory of God.

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