Posted by: dhkrause | February 18, 2018

Faith Leading to Glory

Faith gives God glory, and in response He reveals His glory to the faithful.  Jesus repeatedly said when healing people, “Your faith has made you well.”  (e.g. Luke 8:48, 17:19, 18:42)  Jesus said of those who believe in Him, that they would see the glory of God.  (John 11:40)  Daniel’s three friends remained true to their faith even when the king threatened to throw them into a fiery furnace, and God gloriously honored their faith.  (Daniel 3)  By faith, we receive “the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.” (2 Cor. 4:6)  By faith, we “rejoice in hope of the glory of God”. (Romans 5:2)  Our faith leads to “praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” (1 Peter 1:7)

In Daniel 3, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refused to bow before the image King Nebuchadnezzar had set up.  They knew this would make the king angry, but they believed God would deliver them even if they were thrown into the fiery furnace.  When they came out of the furnace unscathed, the king himself was moved to give glory to God.

Daniel 3 (1)

Daniel 3 (NIV)
13 Furious with rage, Nebuchadnezzar summoned Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. So these men were brought before the king, 14 and Nebuchadnezzar said to them, “Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, that you do not serve my gods or worship the image of gold I have set up?  15 Now when you hear the sound of the horn, flute, zither, lyre, harp, pipe and all kinds of music, if you are ready to fall down and worship the image I made, very good. But if you do not worship it, you will be thrown immediately into a blazing furnace. Then what god will be able to rescue you from my hand?”

16 Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. 17 If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. 18 But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”

19 Then Nebuchadnezzar was furious with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, and his attitude toward them changed. He ordered the furnace heated seven times hotter than usual 20 and commanded some of the strongest soldiers in his army to tie up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego and throw them into the blazing furnace. 21 So these men, wearing their robes, trousers, turbans and other clothes, were bound and thrown into the blazing furnace. 22 The king’s command was so urgent and the furnace so hot that the flames of the fire killed the soldiers who took up Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, 23 and these three men, firmly tied, fell into the blazing furnace.

24 Then King Nebuchadnezzar leaped to his feet in amazement and asked his advisers, “Weren’t there three men that we tied up and threw into the fire?”

They replied, “Certainly, Your Majesty.”

25 He said, “Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, unbound and unharmed, and the fourth looks like a son of the gods.”

Daniel 3 (2)

 

26 Nebuchadnezzar then approached the opening of the blazing furnace and shouted, “Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, servants of the Most High God, come out! Come here!”

So Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego came out of the fire, 27 and the satraps, prefects, governors and royal advisers crowded around them. They saw that the fire had not harmed their bodies, nor was a hair of their heads singed; their robes were not scorched, and there was no smell of fire on them.

28 Then Nebuchadnezzar said, “Praise be to the God of Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, who has sent his angel and rescued his servants! They trusted in him and defied the king’s command and were willing to give up their lives rather than serve or worship any god except their own God.”

In John 11, Jesus tells Martha, the sister of Lazarus who had died four days earlier, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die.” (John 11:25-26)  When she objected to the removing the stone from the tomb, Jesus replied, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” (v. 40)

John 11_40

John 11 (NKJV)
Lazarus Raised from the Dead
38 Then Jesus, again groaning in Himself, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”

Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”

40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” 41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth!” 44 And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Loose him, and let him go.”

John 11_43-44

To the believer, the gospel “displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”  God has “made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.”

2 Corinthians 4 (NIV)
The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

2 corinthians 4_6

As believers, we “rejoice in hope of the glory of God,” and “the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”

Romans 5 (NKJV)
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

Faith that has been tested and proven genuine results in “praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ”.  Even now we experience “joy inexpressible and full of glory”.

1 Peter 1 (NKJV)
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

David Krause, dhkrause@neteze.com, 2/19/2018,https://compellinglove.net/

Photo credits:

http://www.freebibleimages.org/illustrations/meshach-shadrach-abednego/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88SimTF7pFo

http://www.pigeonscafe.org/if-you-believe/

https://bibleask.org/isnt-there-more-than-one-lazarus-mentioned-in-the-bible/

http://www.pictame.com/media/1227510729538014415_1719191538

 

 


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