Dr. Marc Drake, Sr. Pastor, First Baptist Church of Sun Lakes
The Apostle Paul brings a section of his writing to a moving climax by exclaiming, “Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever” (1 Timothy 1:17). And then, as though there were no more words to be said, he wrote, “Amen!” Truly, Paul’s desire was to honor and glorify God with all his heart… for as long as he lived. But what does the Bible mean when it speaks of the glory of God? And how do people bring him glory?
Obviously, in our materialistic and egocentric culture, there are people who glory in themselves, which is a false kind of glory. Whereas past generations treasured virtues such as integrity, chivalry, responsibility and respect, today’s culture has become increasingly bold and unapologetic in its obsession with physical appearance. But self-glory leads down a dead-end road. What, then, is the answer? It is to know why we are here on this earth in the first place; and that’s to live for the glory of God Himself. As writer J. R. Vassar says, “We must glorify most what is most glorious. We must love most what is most lovely. We must value supremely what is supremely valuable.” How true! The only way to escape from thinking too much about our glory… our loveliness… our value… is to be captured by a vision of God himself. For he alone is truly glorious, lovely and supremely valuable.
Thus, God doesn’t make us happy by filling up our world with pictures of ourselves so we can feel important. That would be pure narcissism. The reality is that God makes us happy by filling up our world with Himself. And in doing so, He causes us to lose our preoccupation with ourselves and, instead, sense the wonder and awe that comes with giving God the highest place in our hearts. He alone is worthy of receiving glory.
A famous theological question from an earlier century asks, “What is the chief end of man?” The answer states, “To glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” So, in everything we do, the glory of God should be our chief motive, our central theme and our highest aim. That’s why we are here on this earth. And to glorify God is to daily live, think and speak in such a way as to honor and please Him. None of us can do that apart from knowing Jesus Christ – the one whom God sent on our behalf. As the Bible says, “In these last days, He has spoken to us by His Son (Hebrews 1:2). There was no way we could come to God. The good news is that God came to us!