Thursday, February 14, 2008

God's Passion for His Glory

I'll never forget reading the first few pages of Let The Nations Be Glad when I was a freshman in college. In those first few pages, John Piper lays out dozens of Scriptures that say God does everything He does for His own glory. I had never heard anyone say such a thing. I was offended. I put the book back on the shelf. Only months later I was in the passenger seat of a friend's car. He was playing a tape of a message of John Piper's. The message was called, "Did Christ Die for Us or God?" Piper's words were unintelligable to me.

Now, over 10 years later, no truth is more foundational to my faith than this: God does everything He does to uphold and display His own glory. The crucifixion of the Son of God is ultimately about God's passion for His own fame.

The Biblical evidence for this is overwhelming. It could not be any clearer.

Isaiah 48:9-11:
“For my name's sake I defer my anger, for the sake of my praise I restrain it for you, that I may not cut you off. Behold, I have refined you, but not as silver; I have tried you in the furnace of affliction. For my own sake, for my own sake, I do it, for how should my name be profaned? My glory I will not give to another."

Ezekiel 36:22-23:
“Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus says the Lord God: It is not for your sake, O house of Israel, that I am about to act, but for the sake of my holy name, which you have profaned among the nations to which you came. And I will vindicate the holiness of my great name, which has been profaned among the nations, and which you have profaned among them. And the nations will know that I am the Lord, declares the Lord God, when through you I vindicate my holiness before their eyes."

1. God created us for His glory (Isaiah 43:6-7; 43:21).
2. God forgives sins for His glory (Isaiah 43:25; Psalm 25:11).
3. God hardened Pharaoh’s heart for His glory (Exodus 14:4, 17-18; Romans 9:17).
4. God will not abandon His people for His glory (1 Samuel 12:22).
5. God rescued His people from Egypt for His glory (Psalm 106:7-8).
6. Jesus came for the glory of God (John 12:27-28; 17:1, 4-5; Romans 15:8-9).
7. God predestined, adopted, saved, and sealed us for His glory (Ephesians 1:5-6; 11-12; 13-14).
8. Jesus answers prayers for His glory (John 14:13).
9. God gave the Holy Spirit to us for His glory (John 16:13-14).
10. God commands us to do everything for His glory (1 Corinthians 10:31; Colossians 3:17).
11. Jesus is coming again for His glory (2 Thessalonians 1:9-10; Philippians 2:9-11).

5 comments:

Chase said...

Justin,

Laura and I are walking through LET THE NATIONS BE GLAD with some college students now. It has been a wonderful refresher and a blessing to know that God is commited to what matters most!

laura said...

justin- i remember thinking the same thing when i first picked up that book in college! but thankfully, the Lord did not allow me to be unchanged! by His great grace I have come to know much more about my Savior and thus, how wrong I was in my offense! it's amazing how much the Lord changes us. i'm glad you were honest about your first opinion of Piper!

Randy said...

Amen! Let the Nations be Glad is a wonderful book. I love when Piper says something like, "Missions exist because worship doesn't."

The Taras Family said...

I remember you preaching this truth to us in the youth group years ago! This was one of the first truths that I understood about God- and it led me to a better understanding of the gospel!

Keep on preachin'

-Sarah

Presley said...

Will always remember the study group! The Bible opened up all the more when this great truth was presented before me. Along w/John Piper's LTNBG was Jeff Lewis' "God's Heart For the Nations". I'd encourge anyone to check it out...it's probably about $10.00 online with 8 tremendous lessons, the first being entirely over God's passion for His own glory.