Defining the glory of God is practically impossible for the human mind. I say impossible because to define His glory is to define God and there is no one who can give a complete and exhaustive answer to such an assignment. At best we can seek to describe the glory of God but we will never be able to properly and thoroughly define the glory of God.
Nonetheless, I’m often asked, “What is the glory of God?” so here is my frail attempt at an enormous task: The glory of God is the manifestation of His transcendent majesty which is based on all of His divine characteristics. In other words, it is God’s majestic beauty that comes from all that He is.
In the Old Testament the word glory carries with it the idea of greatness or splendor. In the New Testament, the word translated “glory” (doxa) means “dignity, honor, praise and worship.” Putting the two together, we find that glorifying God means to acknowledge His greatness and give Him honor by praising and worshiping Him. God’s glory is the essence of His nature, and we give glory to Him by recognizing that essence.
To glorify God is to exalt His divine attributes (His holiness, faithfulness, mercy, grace, love, majesty, sovereignty, omniscience, etc.) and live in such a way that others can see these attributes. It’s also to tell others of how great God is and that He alone offers true salvation to the world.
I Corinthians 10:31 tells us “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” In order to do this we must exercise faith (Hebrews 11:6), love without hypocrisy (Romans 12:9), deny ourselves (Luke 9:23), be filled with the Spirit (Ephesians 5:18), and offer ourselves as “living sacrifices” to God (Romans 12:1). Further, glorifying God in everything means we honor Him in all of our thoughts and actions. Our thoughts are always to be set on the things of God (Psalm 1) and the Word of God (Psalm 119:11). Our actions should be the results of our thoughts.
It’s a monumental task to try and define the glory of God. It’s an even larger task to try and live each and every moment of our lives for His glory. Some days are easier than others. Sometimes our anger, jealousy, frustrations, etc. get in the way of a lifestyle that is supposed to glorify God in all things. It is during these difficult days that we must stop and renew our minds and hearts to the ways of the Lord in order to bring glory to His precious name. We exist for His glory (Isaiah 43:7; Ephesians 3:21; I Corinthians 10:31), so let’s be about it!
“To Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:21
By His Grace,