Monday, December 25, 2023

Unto You, Part 11: Unto Us Came God’s Glory

Unto You, Part 11: Unto Us Came God’s Glory
-Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow

What is glory? In Hebrew it means splendor, honor, beauty, majesty, grandeur, or excellence. In Greek it means dignity, honor, praise, or esteem. No amount of words, however descriptive they may be, can help us fully grasp what glory truly is. The reason is because glory is not so much about what we describe, as it is about what we behold.
In John1:14 we read, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John wasn’t given a divine description of Jesus Christ, he was given a personal revelation of Him. John’s eyes looked upon the fullness of God’s glory— grace and truth in the face of Jesus Christ.
To help us understand glory, let’s look at two examples from the natural world. The first example is the glory of a rose. Suppose a blind woman, who had also lost her sense of smell, asked you to describe a rose to her. You could tell her, in great detail, what the rose looked like, including the length of its stem and the shape of its petals. Your words would bring some helpful understanding of the rose, but the woman would never fully behold the glory of the rose without seeing its color and smelling its fragrance.
A botanist may be able to give us a great many interesting facts about the rose and explain to us how it grows and how to care for it, but even that helpful knowledge does not allow us to fully delight in the glory of the rose. The glory of the rose is what God intended for us to experience from the rose when we behold it—when we draw it close and inhale its sweetness, when we gaze upon its delicate beauty, when we let its presence adorn our table and warm our hearts.
The second example is the glory of the Grand Canyon (or any other natural wonder). I have read some things about the Grand Canyon, I have looked at pictures of the Grand Canyon in magazines and books, I have flown over the Grand Canyon from 35,000 feet, I have driven near the Grand Canyon, and I have seen the Grand Canyon on TV, including some amazing images that have been broadcast in High Definition. However, I have never actually been to the Grand Canyon.
For many years, my son’s exposure to the Grand Canyon was very similar to mine. We both knew about the Grand Canyon through various sources and experienced a certain measure of its glory, but we had never beheld the Grand Canyon. One day, my son decided to take a trip to the Grand Canyon to see the sight through his eyes, instead of through the eyes of an author or a photographer. When he returned home from his trip I asked him what his impression was of the Canyon. “I wasn’t prepared for what I saw,” he said, “it was beyond anything I could have imagined.” When my son tried to convey his experiences to me he could not fully describe the wonder of it all—the glory of the Canyon left him in awe. Once he beheld the Canyon I knew that a picture in a book would never satisfy him again.
In order to know the full glory of the Grand Canyon you must behold the Grand Canyon, not just once, but time and time again. You must walk up to it, stand at the edge of its rim, look down, look out, look across, and behold it. You must breathe the air around it and see the various weather patterns change the shading and the colors of its walls. You must walk its trails, feel its steepness, sense its soil beneath your feet, brush by its foliage, watch its river, see its wildlife, and try to grasp, with all your senses, its beauty and enormity.
Have you wondered why the disciples left their all to follow Jesus? What was it about Him that would cause them to take such a drastic step? I think John gives a clue when he tells us, “And we beheld His glory.” It seems that in their first encounter with Jesus, God gave the disciples their first glimpse of His glory.
It certainly was not the full revelation of His glory, but it was enough to win their hearts. They heard something in His voice, they saw something in His countenance, and they felt something from His spirit that allowed them to behold Him for the very first time. It was enough to keep them in awe, to keep them in wonder, and keep them desiring to behold Him more and more.
Think of it, Jesus Christ came so that you could behold His glory. Not just a glimpse of His glory, but the fullness of His glory. As we grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ from day to day, we go from glory to glory. We see more of His beauty, learn more of His ways, and understand more of His heart. In many ways, we are like people watching sunbeams coming through the window of our heart—the sunbeams are real and delightful to look upon—but they are nothing compared to the full glory of the sun from which they emanate.
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy (Jude 1:24 KJV).
And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof (Revelation 21:23 KJV).
For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 4:6 NKJV).
(Jesus Christ) being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person… (Hebrews 1:3 NKJV).
What is the glory of God? Jesus Christ! Who is the glory of God? Jesus Christ! Where is the glory of God? Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the center point, the starting point, and the ending point of the glory of God. We behold the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ, not somewhere else or through something else.
Signs and wonders are expressions of God’s glory, but signs and wonders are not His glory;  the heavens declare the glory of God, but the heavens are not His glory; the earth is filled with the glory of God, but the earth is not His glory—Christ, and Christ alone, is the glory of God.
Father, I desire that they also whom You have entrusted to Me [as Your gift to Me] may be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory, which You have given Me [Your love gift to Me]; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world (John 17:24 AMP).
Jesus wants you to be where He is. Why does He want you to be with Him? One of the greatest cries of His heart was that He wanted you to be with Him so that you could see (behold) His glory.
The glory that Jesus now carries in the heavens is beyond anything you have ever seen or known upon this earth. It is a glory that is greater than all the national parks and earthly wonders of the world put together. His glory is more majestic than ascending the heights of the highest mountain peaks; more magnificent than seeing all the world’s waterfalls cascading down around you; more glorious than smelling the fragrance of a million roses placed within your grasp; more wondrous than hearing, in the richest and purest tones, the music of the most beautiful symphonies ever composed.
Jesus wants you to behold His glory for the sheer pleasure of it, for the pure of joy of it, for the absolute delight of it all. His glory is so great, so vast, and so magnificent, that it will take you an eternity to behold it — a billion, trillion years to begin to see it, feel it, know it, and experience it. His glory will keep on delighting you, over and over again. It will be one continuous “Wow, Jesus, Wow!” forever, and ever, and ever. Hallelujah!

#christmasseries #christmasdevotions #meetinginthemeadow #roylessin #untoyou


©2023 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. Photo by Marina Bromley. Used with permission, all rights reserved.

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