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Do You See What I See?

"Christ in you the hope of glory," wrote the apostle Paul. It is one of the greatest blessings of the Christian life that we share the image of Jesus Christ and go "from glory to glory."

"We all, with unveiled faces reflecting the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another, which is from the Lord, who is the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:18 NET).

Every believer has the privilege of entering into the holy of holies and enjoying an intimate communion with God.

“Glory” as used in the Bible is a quality belonging to God.  The word "glory" suggests something which radiates from the one who has it, leaving an indelible impression behind.

In the Old Testament “glory” is seldom used for the honor shown to men, but it is frequently used for the honor brought or given to God. His glory and power is manifest or shown forth.

“Lift up your heads, O gates, And be lifted up, O ancient doors, That the King of glory may come in! Who is the King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, The Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, O gates, And lift them up, O ancient doors, That the King of glory may come in! Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, He is the King of glory. Selah” (Psalm 24:7-10). 

We are constantly reminded in the Scriptures that the LORD God will not share His glory with another (Isa. 42:8; 48:11).

The Hebrew word kabod brings out the luminous, manifestation of God’s person, and His glorious revelation of Himself (Isa. 6:3; Ex. 33:17-23; 34:29-35; Num. 14:10, 21ff; Hab. 2:14; Psa. 72:18-19).

The Lord Jesus Christ shares in this same glory that the Father enjoys. Jesus said, “Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was” (John 17:5). It appears above all in His work of salvation on the cross, His resurrection and ascension into glory. Jesus possessed the glory continually, but not in open demonstration except on various occasions (Matt. 17:1ff; John 1:1-3, 14, 18, 2:11, etc).  Jesus will be revealed in His glory and power for all men to see at His Second Coming (Matt. 19:28; Lk. 22:30; 24:30; 1 Thess. 4:13-18). We will see Him as He is now (Rev. 21:22-23; 4:8-14; 5:9-17; Phil. 3:21; 1 Thess. 2:12; Heb. 2:10; 1 Pet. 5:1, 4, 10; 1 Cor. 15:48-53; Rom. 8:17, 29; Col. 3:4; 1 Jn. 3:2).

Moreover, Christians are to be like mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of God wherever and in whatever circumstances we may find ourselves.

The glory of God with its transforming power is operative even now among believers through the risen Christ and our fellowship with Him (Rom. 8:29-30). The believer shares this divine glory now as it is reflected in the person of Jesus Christ and will in complete perfect manifestation of that glory in the great consummation when Christ returns. The Christian’s confidence is in “the hope of glory” in Christ (Col. 1:27; Eph. 1:18; 2 Thess. 2:14; 2 Tim. 2:10).

The highest obligation of man is to glorify and praise the LORD God in worship. The only way this can happen is through an intimate personal relationship with God through the Lord Jesus Christ. God’s power is demonstrated and operates in “salvation history.” The supreme manifestation of the power and glory of God appears in His work of salvation (Matt. 17:2-5; Jn. 1:14; 2:11; 2 Cor. 4:4, 6, etc).

Jesus gives His glory to those who believe in Him (Jn. 17:15, 22). The veil of unbelief is removed in Christ. “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18).

The mirror is God’s Word (James 1:22-25). As we look into God’s Word and see the Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit transforms us into the image of God. It is important in this process of sanctification that we be honest, open and transparent with God and do not wear a veil. We are changed on the outside because of the change that comes about on the inside. We radiate the glory of God because He has placed it within us through the new birth, justification and sanctification. We meditate on God’s Word and look into the face of Jesus and the Holy Spirit transforms us. As we grow in the knowledge of Him and His grace, we continually grow from glory to glory in His likeness. The glory of God’s grace continues to increase in the yielded believer. Only the grace of God can make us like Jesus.

The glory of the Christian does not fade away like Moses’ did, but is an ever-increasing glory, i.e., from one stage of glory to another. A believer’s glory is eternal because of God’s abiding presence through the Holy Spirit. This glory is the work of the Holy Spirit in our regeneration and sanctification. We are being progressively transformed into the likeness of Christ. Christ-likeness is the goal of the Christian life (Eph. 4:23-24; Col. 3:10).

The veil of unbelief was lifted, and remains lifted, as we behold the glorious face of the Lord Jesus. It is like looking into a mirror or contemplating something glorious. We reflect in our person that same glory of the Lord. We are being continuously transformed. Our inward reality is being changed because we are being transformed into the likeness of Christ.

Christians seeing in Jesus the image of God, are not deified, but are transformed into the same image. The glory that we share with Christ ever increases from one stage of glory to a higher stage of glory. This is our grand inheritance now in Christ. Can you find a better picture of the sanctifying work of the Holy Spirit in the Scriptures?

The veils, once lifted, remain lifted. All of us Christians without any veils over our faces continuously reflect like mirrors the glorious splendor of the Lord if we keep on beholding Him in the Word of God. We are being transformed into the same likeness of Him, in an ever increasing splendor from one degree of His splendor to another, since this change of outward experience comes from the Lord who is the Spirit working in our hearts (Pounds’ Paraphrase of 2 Corinthians 3:18).

Selah!

Message by Wil Pounds (c) 2006

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(c) 2006  Message by Wil Pounds. Anyone is free to use this material and distribute it, but it may not be sold under any circumstances whatsoever without the author's written consent.

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