Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Trying something new

This journey into the heart of God, into an understanding of His glory, continues to amaze me, awe me, leave me humbled and without words to express the magnitude of the changes He is working in my mind and in my heart. I am in awe of God. I want to share that. So I'm going to do something a little bit different. Every so often, I'm going to pull from particularly good sessions of studying the Word and share what insights God is giving me. I hope it's a blessing to you!

Monday, July 2, 2007 - Journal Entry
Text: Psalm 29 (drawing on ESV, NASB, NKJV, NIV, and AMP for study)
Glory: His glory demands our holiness. We have to worship Adonai in "holy array," in the "beauty of holiness." Interestingly, that can also be translated as a command to worship God "in majesty." Now majesty is closely tied to glory. In fact, it's frequently found in the same passages, often even in the same sentences, when referring to God. So then holiness and glory are intimately connected, at some level I do not yet understand (see v. 2).

In Hi stemple, everything says "Glory!" All cry it, and all are saying it (various translations). That's a continuous present tense verb, and thus the action is continuous - it's not a singular event. People are constantly calling out "Glory!" in God's temple. Worshipping requires acknowledgment of His glory. Is it possible that worship is simply that? Calling out "Glory!" to Him with everything in us (see v. 9)?

"The glory due His name" would literally be translated as "the glory of His name" (emphasis added). It's already His, it ialready is an attribute of His name. [Your name is glorious? This is beyond me... I ask for understanding and wisdom.] His name is glorious because His name is Him at some level: His names are His character, His person revealed to us. But if "just" His name (as if that phrase even makes sense) - "just" one of His many names - is glorious, how much more so His totality, the immeasurable sum of His infinitude? It is beyond description (see v. 2).

We are to worship "in the beauty of holiness" or in "holy array." The NKJV references 2 Chronicles 20:21 and Psalm 110:3. In the former, we see "holy attire" fitted to the priests who led the army to battle. They were to sing to the Lord and praise Him in that garb as Jehoshophat went to war to save Judah - the same as they had done when taking Jericho hundreds of years earlier. Notice the context: there is a great shout in response to God's word coming just verses earlier (an interesting parallel to the shouting in the temple in Psalm 29). Also, earlier in the chapter, Jehoshophat declares that God's name is in the temple (2 Chronicles 20:9). Most of the time people reference His glory being in the temple (the Hebrew word Shekinah - His presence and glory filling the temple, for which a later prophet mourned when it was taken) - but here Jehoshophat say's that it's God's name in the temple. That's a powerful statement, and somewhat confusing. How is His name there? And how closely does that tie to glory, both from the semantics and grammar here, and from the reference back to Psalm 29? There is a strong connection here, one I must needs grasp.

Now, Psalm 110 is one of the prophetic, Messianic psalms of David. It addresses the coming savior - Christ. People wear holy garments in the day of His power, offering themselves freely (v. 3). Holy garb is required - but it's a given, too: His people will be set apart (holiness is the state of being set apart for God). And so we come full circle.

God's glory demands our holiness - our being utterly set apart for Him, dedicated to Him. he - His glory - does not need us; but He demands our allegiance and our holiness nevertheless.

[God, make me holy as You are holy. Set me apart for You that I may display Your glory. Let me know Your glory more. Let me know You in Your glory more. Amen.]

- Chris

1 comment:

  1. I love this ... yes, Lord, may it be true of me, too.

    II Chron 20 is one of my fav chapters in the Bible, and is one I've been reading this last few weeks.

    I'm stunned, as I read about Jehoshophat in his later years, how he turns from God. And so many others are recorded as making very ungodly choices in their latter years. This intrigues me, especially at my age, where my "latter years" are more tangibly in my future ... what is it that causes such great men (and women) to make such horrible choices in their latter years? And after they have experienced His glory? His power? His intimacy? What is it that thins and dwindles that makes us in our humanity so vulnerable to the enemy in our latter years?

    Hummm . . .

    There are times ... when I dwell on His glory ... and His presence fills me overflowing ... that it's as though I'm truly standing on holy ground ... and I'm forced to my face before Him ... and I know as intimately as my humanity will allow, how unworthy I am, and yet, He still chooses me. His glory ... I wonder that we will even completely comprehend it when we stand in His very presence :)


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