Sunday, September 24, 2017

SS: Kingdom, Power, Glory - also why God gets glory in sad times

Here is the last part: For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen!  It’s the part not included in most Bibles, but it has ended the Lord’s prayer in churches for thousands of years.

Everybody likes a story with a good ending, a happily ever after.  This part of the Lord’s prayer is called the doxology, which means literally in Greek, “glory saying”. It is something said that brings glory to God.  It is the happily ever after of the prayer.  It reminds us that God is in charge.  Let’s read Revelation 4:11.

“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
    to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
    and by your will they were created
    and have their being.”

This was also made into a song: Thou Art Worthy.  Let’s sing it.

God is worthy, he deserves to receive all of our praises and honor and all the glory for everything because he created everything.  And why did he create everything?  For his glory!  He gets to receive the credit for creating all life and forgiving his people from their sins.  Everything that he decides will give him glory if not now, then when Jesus comes back.

By the way, does this made God sound like he is conceited when we say he made everything for his glory?  We know that God is not self-centered.  There is no one more selfless than our God.  So why can he create everything for his glory and not be selfish?  Because he is not just one person – he’s three: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.  He is not three gods, just one; but he is three persons.  And everything each person does is for the glory of the other two.  And it has always been that way.  It never began, and it will never end.  It always was.

Now, let’s look at an odd verse that the writer of this lesson chose: Job 36:22-24.

“God is exalted in his power.
    Who is a teacher like him?
23 Who has prescribed his ways for him,
    or said to him, ‘You have done wrong’?
24 Remember to extol his work,
    which people have praised in song.

Why do I call this odd?  Because of Job’s story.  Let’s go to chapter 1.

At this point, I will read Job 1.  Someone will play Satan, and someone will play Job.  Someone can read God’s lines, too.  Job will have animals/money, servants, and children.  God will allow Satan to take all that from him.  Then, I will explain that in chapter 2, God also allowed Satan to make Job very sick. 

Job never cursed God or turned away from him, but he did question his goodness and fairness.  His three friends started wondering if Job did something wrong to earn this sadness, but we all know he did not.  Then, a young man named Elihu came and told Job and his friends that they were all wrong and then said the verse we just read.  Let’s read it again. 

And finally, God spoke up and told Job no answers or apologies.  Simply, he is God and we are not.

Does this give God any less glory?  Let’s see the original reason God did this in chapter 1: he wanted to prove that Job would remain faithful to God.  So, he actually wanted to glorify his friend Job.  And in the end, God will receive glory through that, too.  And even better, God will send Jesus the Son to die for Job’s sins and raise him from the dead to give Job his complete goodness. 

And whenever you are going through a sad time, you must remember that God is doing the same for you.  He is glorifying both you and ultimately his Son, Jesus.

I feel like singing the Doxology again.  Let’s do that!

No comments:

Post a Comment