We are partakers of that radiance: so called and so chosen that we might, in constant effort towards heaven, establish in this time and upon this earth that “The name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and ye in Him, according to the grace of our God” 2 Thess 2 v 12. But how can we, the created, add anything to Him, the Creator? Is it not that in saving lost sinners He gains to himself in our justification the glory of forgiveness? So as sinners see in us the work of grace they give God glory and praise Him for His goodness. We then add that virtue to His glory.
I am inclined to believe that which is laid up for us in heaven is glory, and in 1 cor. 2 v 9 it says “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him”. And if this glory cannot be conceived, how then can we attempt to fathom the matchless splendour of the Son of God? There is a lingering excellence that Christ has which when seen leaves men speechless. Paul who, when on the Damascus road saw the glory of the risen Christ, went to the street Straight, and saw nothing for three days, nor spoke. We with the eye of faith which is the seeing eye of the Christian, penetrate beyond the dark veil to observe the majesty that is His.
We see the wonder of His person – the combined natures entwined in one redemptive act for lost mankind. “But God hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit, for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God” 1 Cor. 2 v 10.
If Christ’s glory could be well understood by natural men then His glory would be very little and of small value. But God and His Glory in Christ are past the human comprehension. Paul says that after he had preached the gospel there were still unsearchable riches past finding out. I suppose he fathomed deeper than any man and yet in all his understanding of the great truths, he could still imply that the vastness of Christ’s treasure was like an ocean that was too deep to plumb. There are some regions of the sea bed that no man has ever reached, beyond natural investigation; and that’s like God. There are, however, many things which we can know and these we should be aware of.
It is true that God has put a curtain over the gleaming image of Christ, and we see through a glass darkly, but there are some revelations that have been given for our knowledge and future anticipation. It would be unwise to reach heaven and not have some slight insight of the Glory, for it is glory that will be mainly beheld in that wondrous land. You will see the glory of Christ in His nature and inner being, and it is only as God leads us into deeper communion with Him through Christ by the Spirit that we can know the real glory.
Christ carries heaven within Himself, and He will convey the knowledge of this in part as we worship Him. The Bible reveals this path and we are bidden, for our pleasure and for His glory, to walk in wholehearted relationship, born of blood and settled by righteousness given freely upon divine merit.
Men have tried to capture His resemblance in order to reveal to the world some measure of His glory. But all they do is to put Him to an open shame. There can be no visible image that correctly portrays the nature of God. Natural men cannot fathom God and therefore cannot mould him in earthly likeness by earthly means. It only belittles the real glory that is His. If man by his finger can give God a face then man will cherish that form to the exclusion of sight through faith, which is the only spiritual eye the believer has.
See next week’s blog post for part 3