Daily Thought for: 16th October
THE BRIGHTNESS OF GODS GLORY
Hebrews 1. 3; John 1. 14.
The glory of God must be an awesome thing to behold. According to Stephen in Acts chapter 7 verse 2, the God of glory appeared to Abram while he was yet an idolater and still in Ur of the Chaldees. This vision totally converted him to a life of dedicated devotion and of faith in the God who appeared to him.
Moses requested of God, show me thy glory, Exod. 33. 18. The divine response was to allow Moses to occupy a place by Him and to cover him that he might see His hinder parts. The glory of God would pass by him. As a result Moses face so shone that the children of Israel were not able to look at him and he had to veil his face until the reflected glory faded, 2 Cor. 3. 7-13!
These things being so what are we to make of todays divine title? Christ is the brightness of Gods glory!
Firstly, we need to know what the glory of God is. Certainly it is not just the piercing brightness of the light that eternally shines in His presence. Moses was probably ignorant of that which he had asked to see, so we can benefit from what God revealed to Moses of His glory. He declared His glory to be His divine attributes of goodness, grace and mercy. And these are but a few. The glory of God is the expression of the divine attributes in their entirety! His glory is what He is.
Now the Lord Jesus is the brightness of this glory. The word could be rendered, effulgence, radiance, outshining or beaming. Christ is, then, in His essential majesty, the sole expression and exhibitor of the divine being. All that God is in majesty and glory are to be seen uniquely in the Son. Who can deny His deity if this is so?
The writer to the Hebrews contrasts the barely visible, flickering lamp of prophetic testimony in past times with the full- orbed revelation of God in the Son. John says, and we beheld His glory, but this was only what was seen while He was here in the flesh. One day we will gaze upon His glory undimmed and with bodies of glory too.
Paul makes a useful challenge to our hearts when he states that it is only as we behold the glory of the Lord that we are transformed into the same image, 2 Cor. 3.18.