Expect the Glory

“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you” (Romans 8:11, NIV).

As Bible believers we understand that our God is omnipresent (everywhere present). But there are times in the Bible and in our lives when the glory of God or manifested presence of God is concentrated and focused in such a way that we can tangibly identify or discern the glory and also observe that real positive results are produced as a result of that glory. The Word “manifested” means that God’s presence is readily and clearly perceived or made obvious (we can’t possibly miss point).

Moses understood that it was the glory or manifest presence of God that would distinguish him and the people of God from the rest of world. When Moses asked the Lord to show him His glory the Lord said, “I will cause all my goodness to pass in front of you” (Exodus 33:18-19). The glory can be understood to be the “heaviness” of God. This means that the Lord is heavy with everything good. In other words, the glory is literally manifested goodness (a revelation of his nature, will, and power). Psalm 31:19 indicates that God has goodness stored up for those that fear Him. The Psalmist boldly exclaims in Psalm 86:17, “Give me a sign of your goodness, that my enemies may see it and be put to shame.” Clearly the glory of God is not just a religious phrase or concept but a tangible, practical revealing of God’s presence and power in real life situations.

It is important for us to remember in challenging times that historically and biblically the glory has been behind God’s amazing operation in this world. Creation was accomplished by the glory. The Red Sea was parted by the glory. The enemies of God were routed by the glory. The miracles of God were the result of the glory. Jesus was resurrected by the glory. That same glory is working among us today to save, transform, heal, and deliver. He never changes and the glory has not diminished in its power. What was available then is available to us now.

I want to encourage you to read and reflect on the story of the woman from Syrian Phoenicia whose daughter was bound by demonic power (Mark 7:24-30). Despite being a Gentile she revealed in her interaction with Jesus some very powerful principles for tapping into the glory, goodness, and power of God. If someone outside the covenants and promises of God at that time (Ephesians 2:11) can tap into the glory of God through faith in Jesus, how much more can we who have experienced the new birth expect and receive the glory.

How to tap into the glory of God…

  1. Realize the glory is directly tied to Jesus’ presence (v. 24). Because the glory is the manifested presence of God and Jesus is the fullness of the godhead bodily, the glory is revealed now in proximity to Jesus.
  2. Notice that the glory catches the world’s attention (v. 25). The most hardened sinner and the biggest antagonist still needs the power of God. The world ignores religion, rules of men, potluck dinners, and church singings, but they are seriously attracted by the glory of God (1 Corinthians 4:20).
  3. Know that begging does not release the glory (v. 26). Begging and pleading is not believing. Faith, not the need, no matter how great, is the basis for the releasing of the glory.
  4. Remember that the glory belongs to the believer (v. 27). The manifested presence of God (heavy with everything good) is a covenant privilege reserved for the people of God. Healing, deliverance, and provision are all the “children’s bread” (meaning “for the kids”).
  5. Express faith to access the covenant glory of God (v. 28). We go from outside of the family to inside the family of God with (1) a decision of the will, and (2) the faith-filled declaration of the mouth (Romans 10:9-10). Remember that Rahab by choice aligned herself with the invading force of God and is now identified in the earthly lineage of Jesus Christ for all eternity (Hebrews 11:31).
  6. Expect results when the glory is tapped (vv. 29-30). When we take that step of faith (and faith pleases the Lord) we should expect that the glory will show up bringing life-changing results. Contrary to some who have equated the glory of God to strange church services and “stupid human tricks” (courtesy of David Letterman) done in God’s name, the real indication that the glory of God has manifested is that we are closer to God, and we are changed in some significant way.