Chapter 2- Christ’s Glory as God’s Representative
Why must we know God rightly? Why is it vital to have a clear understanding of God, His character and His works?
John 10:1–10 (ESV) 10 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a thief and a robber. 2 But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 To him the gatekeeper opens. The sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. 5 A stranger they will not follow, but they will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” 6 This figure of speech Jesus used with them, but they did not understand what he was saying to them.
7 So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9 I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
John 14:6 (ESV) 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
John 14:9 (ESV) 9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?
Jesus Christ is the perfect revelation of the Father. This is expressly for the benefit of the Church, those for which Christ died. We see the glory of God in the person of Jesus Christ.
2 Corinthians 4:6 (ESV) 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
The glory of God that we see in Jesus specifically is the glory of God’s character and works. He is the very image of God.
2 Corinthians 4:4 (ESV) 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
Hebrews 1:3 (ESV) 3 He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,
Colossians 1:15 (ESV) 15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.
Jesus perfectly reveals God’s nature and will to us. As we read about Christ through the pages of Scripture we are also learning the character of the Father.
Jesus is the image of the Father shown to us, the Church and He is also in the very presence of the Father. He has been eternally in the presence of the Father. Before His incarnation He was with the Father; while on earth He was in deep communion with the Father, and now He has ascended to the Father.
The Rock on which the Church is built is this very glory, Christ revealing the Father to us. The Church is built on the character and the will of God. So, as long as the Rock stands firm the Church is safe.
Our author states, It is as the representative of God that the Lord Christ is exceedingly glorious. Those who cannot see His glory by faith as God’s representative do not know Him. When they worship him, they worship an image of their own devising.
1 Corinthians 1:21–25 (ESV) 21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. 22 For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, 23 but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, 24 but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
We are made to bring glory to God. Since Christ is the representation of God’s glory to us then it is only by Christ that we can glorify God rightly.
Satan wants to blind our eyes to this glory.
2 Corinthians 4:3–4 (ESV) 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
Let’s thing logically for a minute…If God can be known just as well through other religions then what does this do where Jesus is concerned? How does this affect what He did for us on the cross? If we can know God through a false religion, Christ has no more glory than a golden calf.
How did the people in the OT know God before Christ came?
Before the incarnation, God’s people knew Him through revelation of His Word and in the ceremonies of worship. This was the privilege of Israel.
Psalm 147:19–20 (ESV)
19 He declares his word to Jacob,
his statutes and rules to Israel.
20 He has not dealt thus with any other nation;
they do not know his rules.
Praise the Lord!
The deepest longing of those closest to God has always been to see His glory.
David longed to see God but in David’s day, he could only see Him in types and shadows.
Psalm 63:1–2 (ESV)
1 O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you;
my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you,
as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
The Glory of Christ by John Owen (Banner of Truth Puritan Paperbacks)
Through the Looking Glass by Kris Lungaard (P & R)