PHBC July 4, 1999
Series: First Peter, Ser. #72a
GLORIFYING GOD IN ALL THINGS
IN ALL THINGS GOD IS TO BE GLORIFIED
SCRIPTURE: 1 Chronicles 29:10-16 Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be thou, LORD God of Israel our father, for ever and ever. 11 Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all. 12 Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all. 13 Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name. 14 But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee. 15 For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding. 16 O LORD our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own.
TEXT: 1 Peter 4:11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
INTRO: Peter tells us that the end of all that we do should be the glory of God. And, further that this glory is through Jesus Christ to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever.
The glory of God is a preeminent theme throughout holy Scripture. It is a multifaceted subject that reflects in all directions. In the Old Testament the glory of God was revealed in many ways. A study of the glory of God and how and by what and whom he is glorified would be an inexhaustible study.
I. SOME CHARACTERISTICS OF GODíS GLORY
A. Godís glory is unique.
1. Regardless of the cunning of the workmen who make idols, there is no craftsman who can make a god equal in glory to the God of heaven. Isaiah 46:5-9 To whom will ye liken me, and make me equal, and compare me, that we may be like? 6 They lavish gold out of the bag, and weigh silver in the balance, and hire a goldsmith; and he maketh it a god: they fall down, yea, they worship. 7 They bear him upon the shoulder, they carry him, and set him in his place, and he standeth; from his place shall he not remove: yea, one shall cry unto him, yet can he not answer, nor save him out of his trouble. 8 Remember this, and shew yourselves men: bring it again to mind, O ye transgressors. 9 Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me.
2. He is incomparable in his glory. Isaiah 40:18-26 To whom then will ye liken God? or what likeness will ye compare unto him? 19 The workman melteth a graven image, and the goldsmith spreadeth it over with gold, and casteth silver chains. 20 He that is so impoverished that he hath no oblation chooseth a tree that will not rot; he seeketh unto him a cunning workman to prepare a graven image, that shall not be moved. 21 Have ye not known? have ye not heard? hath it not been told you from the beginning? have ye not understood from the foundations of the earth? 22 It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in: 23 That bringeth the princes to nothing; he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity. 24 Yea, they shall not be planted; yea, they shall not be sown: yea, their stock shall not take root in the earth: and he shall also blow upon them, and they shall wither, and the whirlwind shall take them away as stubble. 25 To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One. 26 Lift up your eyes on high, and behold who hath created these things, that bringeth out their host by number: he calleth them all by names by the greatness of his might, for that he is strong in power; not one faileth.
3. The Psalmist praised God for his unique glory revealed in his unique works and wonders. Psalm 86:8-10 Among the gods there is none like unto thee, O Lord; neither are there any works like unto thy works. 9 All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and shall glorify thy name. 10 For thou art great, and doest wondrous things: thou art God alone.
4. Moses, in one of his addresses to Pharaoh let him know that one of the things he would learn in the plagues is that there is no one like our God. Exodus 8:9-10 And Moses said unto Pharaoh, Glory over me: when shall I intreat for thee, and for thy servants, and for thy people, to destroy the frogs from thee and thy houses, that they may remain in the river only? 10 And he said, To morrow. And he said, Be it according to thy word: that thou mayest know that there is none like unto the LORD our God. And again, Exodus 9:14 For I will at this time send all my plagues upon thine heart, and upon thy servants, and upon thy people; that thou mayest know that there is none like me in all the earth.
5. When Israel sang their song of deliverance they sang of the unique glory of God. Exodus 15:11 Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
6. Moses declared the uniqueness of Godís glory during his last days on the earth. Deuteronomy 33:26-28 There is none like unto the God of Jeshurun, who rideth upon the heaven in thy help, and in his excellency on the sky. 27 The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them. 28 Israel then shall dwell in safety alone: the fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of corn and wine; also his heavens shall drop down dew.
7. In her well-known prayer, Hannah set forth the unique nature of Godís glory. 1 Samuel 2:1-2 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation. 2 There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.
8. God challenged Job to equal him in glory. Job 40:9-14 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him? 10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty. 11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him. 12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place. 13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret. 14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.
9. David loved to sing of the unique, incomparable glory of God. Psalm 89:6-9 For who in the heaven can be compared unto the LORD? who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto the LORD? 7 God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him. 8 O LORD God of hosts, who is a strong LORD like unto thee? or to thy faithfulness round about thee? 9 Thou rulest the raging of the sea: when the waves thereof arise, thou stillest them. Psalm 113:4-6 The LORD is high above all nations, and his glory above the heavens. 5 Who is like unto the LORD our God, who dwelleth on high, 6 Who humbleth himself to behold the things that are in heaven, and in the earth!
10. That weeping prophet Jeremiah joined the chorus of those who praised God for his unique glory. Jeremiah 10:6-7 Forasmuch as there is none like unto thee, O LORD; thou art great, and thy name is great in might. 7 Who would not fear thee, O King of nations? for to thee doth it appertain: forasmuch as among all the wise men of the nations, and in all their kingdoms, there is none like unto thee.
B. Godís glory is preeminent and permanent.
1. He absolutely refuses to give his glory to any other, be it man or graven image. Isaiah 42:8 I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
2. He is very jealous to preserve his glory. Isaiah 48:11 For mine own sake, even for mine own sake, will I do it: for how should my name be polluted? and I will not give my glory unto another.
3. He has forbidden man to give his glory to another. Exodus 20:3-5 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. 4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me.
C. The glory of God is his personal glory, his personal expression of himself to man.
1. God is the glory of his people. Psalm 3:3 But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.
a. Again the Psalmist declared God to be his glory. Psalm 62:7 In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.
b. Through the prophet Isaiah God assures his people he will be our glory. Isaiah 60:19 The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for brightness shall the moon give light unto thee: but the LORD shall be unto thee an everlasting light, and thy God thy glory.
c. That godly old man Simeon who had been promised that he would not see death until he had seen the Saviour, took the child Jesus in his arms and declared him to be the glory of Godís people. Luke 2:32 A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel.
2. When his people went after other Godís they changed their glory into that which does not profit. Psalm 106:19 They made a calf in Horeb, and worshipped the molten image. Jeremiah 2:11 Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? but my people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit.
3. This was the paramount sin of the Gentiles which led to their terrible immorality. Romans 1:22-23 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
II. SOME WAYS AND INSTANCES IN WHICH GOD HAS REVEALED HIS GLORY
A. The creation reveals his glory. Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. 2 Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. 3 There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.
B. His eternal power and Godhead are revealed in the things that he has made. Romans 1:18-23 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; 19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. 20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
C. God revealed his glory in the pillar of cloud and fire that accompanied Israel in their journey. Numbers 14:14 And they will tell it to the inhabitants of this land: for they have heard that thou LORD art among this people, that thou LORD art seen face to face, and that thy cloud standeth over them, and that thou goest before them, by day time in a pillar of a cloud, and in a pillar of fire by night.
D. God revealed his glory to them when they murmured for meat to eat. Exodus 16:7-10 And in the morning, then ye shall see the glory of the LORD; for that he heareth your murmurings against the LORD: and what are we, that ye murmur against us? 8 And Moses said, This shall be, when the LORD shall give you in the evening flesh to eat, and in the morning bread to the full; for that the LORD heareth your murmurings which ye murmur against him: and what are we? your murmurings are not against us, but against the LORD. 9 And Moses spake unto Aaron, Say unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, Come near before the LORD: for he hath heard your murmurings. 10 And it came to pass, as Aaron spake unto the whole congregation of the children of Israel, that they looked toward the wilderness, and, behold, the glory of the LORD appeared in the cloud.
E. He revealed his glory when it filled the temple the day the temple was dedicated and the Ark of the Covenant was set into its place. 1 Kings 8:10-11 And it came to pass, when the priests were come out of the holy place, that the cloud filled the house of the LORD, 11 So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the glory of the LORD had filled the house of the LORD. 2 Chronicles 7:1-4 Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house. 2 And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORDíS house. 3 And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and worshipped, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. 4 Then the king and all the people offered sacrifices before the LORD.
F. The preeminent manifestation of Godís glory has been in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ.
1. John wrote of this revelation of glory. John 1:14 And the Word was made 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.
2. This glory of God in Christ was seen in his miracles.
a. The first miracle manifested this glory. John 2:11 This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
b. The raising of Lazarus revealed the glory of God through Jesus Christ. John 11:40 Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?
c. The unbeliever never sees this glory. Isaiah 53:2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.
d. God graciously reveals his glory to his elect in the face of the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:4-6 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. 5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesusí sake. 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
e. Jesus Christ is the very radiance, the brilliance, the brightness of Godís glory. Hebrews 1:1-3 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, 2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; 3 Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high.
f. In addition to his own Glory as God the Son, the man Christ Jesus received great glory from God the Father. 2 Peter 1:17 For he received from God the Father honour and glory, when there came such a voice to him from the excellent glory, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
g. I close this point with a portion of one of Davidís wonderful songs about Jesus Christ. Psalm 45:1-4 My heart is inditing a good matter: I speak of the things which I have made touching the king: my tongue is the pen of a ready writer. 2 Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips: therefore God hath blessed thee for ever. 3 Gird thy sword upon thy thigh, O most mighty, with thy glory and thy majesty. 4 And in thy majesty ride prosperously because of truth and meekness and righteousness; and thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things.
III. THE END OF ALL THESE THINGS SET FORTH AS OUR RESPONSIBILITY AS PILGRIMS ON THIS EARTH IS THAT GOD BE GLORIFIED
A. When we speak as the oracles of God it is not so that we will be praised for our great knowledge of the word but that God may be glorified for giving us such a wonderful, all-sufficient, pure and powerful word.
B. When we minister according to our God-given ability it has as its end the glory of God. Matthew 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
C. We are his servants and all that we do should be done for his glory. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? 20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are Godís.
D. Whatever we do, if it is to mow the lawn, keep the records, make the tapes, send the flowers, wait the tables, or whatever, we should do it all for his glory. 1 Corinthians 10:31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God. Colossians 3:17 And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.
E. Therefore, what ever work is set before us and for which God has given us the ability let us do it heartily as unto the Lord. Colossians 3:23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.
F. If Lazarus could suffer sickness and death so that God could be glorified, should we not serve faithfully so that God can be glorified in our lives. John 11:4 When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby.
G. If Martha and Mary could suffer grief and sorrow so that Godís glory might be revealed, should not we suffer and serve so that God might be glorified. John 11:40 Jesus saith unto her, Said I not unto thee, that, if thou wouldest believe, thou shouldest see the glory of God?
H. Let us do all things with the prayer that what we do may redound to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 4:15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.
CONCLUSION: In closing let me point out something that I think is at least inferred in this verse we have studied. Peter admonishes that if any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God with the end of that and other things being the glory of God. I suggest there is a strong inference here that if one does not speak as the oracles of God, his preaching does not glorify God. Some people believe that God is glorified by preaching that is not Scriptural as long as the speaker is sincere. I suggest to you that is not so. God is glorified when his word is magnified and held up and proclaimed in purity and truth.
A man in an athletic contest, though he be the apparent winner, is not crowned unless he follows the rules and runs according the to specified rules. We will not be rewarded unless we strive lawfully. And God is so greatly glorified when we worship, preach, proclaim, and serve according to his word and according to the ability he gives to us.
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