Have you ever seen the glory of the Lord?
What is the glory of the Lord?
When we were studying through Revelation, Todd defined God’s glory as “the sum total of His character and attributes.” In other words, we see the glory of God when we are made aware of who He is as He has revealed Himself to be.
We will not see Him in all His glory as long as we are looking with human eyes, but one day, when we are given our immortal, glorified bodies, we will be able to gaze on Him, face-to-face, and see His glory. Right now, we only get little glimpses.
I believe we see *some* of God’s glory in creation, both the natural world around us, and in one another as the image of Christ is formed in us, and the Holy Spirit lives out the Christ-life through us. As followers of Jesus, we should have a life-directing passion for God’s glory to be seen and recognized in everything we do.
As Moses and Aaron made all the preparations for those first sacrifices that would be made on the bronze altar, they were working towards one goal. They desired God’s presence in their midst … they wanted to see God’s glory. Finally, when all the work was done, it was time to stop planning and actually carry out what God had commanded.
Leviticus 9:5-7a – So they took what Moses had commanded to the front of the tent of meeting, and the whole congregation came near and stood before the Lord. Moses said, “This is the thing which the Lord has commanded you to do, that the glory of the Lord may appear to you.” Then Moses said to Aaron, “Come near to the altar…”
Can you sense the anticipation in these verses? Moses, Aaron, and the people had followed God’s instructions to the letter in preparation, but now it was “go” time. Aaron had to actually step up and begin the offerings and sacrifices. I’m sure the thought crossed his mind, “I hope I do this correctly!” After all, a lot of people were depending on him!
Because Christ has made the perfect sacrifice for our sin through His death on the cross, we don’t have to worry about all those minute details. But if we want to see God’s glory, we have to do what Aaron did. We have to come to the altar.
Coming to the altar means recognizing our own sinfulness and need for a blood atonement.
Coming to the altar means accepting what Jesus did in our place and believing by faith in its effectiveness to remove our guilt and make us acceptable to God.
Coming to the altar is the first step – receiving forgiveness for our sins, but it doesn’t end there.
Leviticus 9:23-24 – Moses and Aaron went into the tent of meeting. When they came out and blessed the people, the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people. Then fire came out from before the Lord and consumed the burnt offering and the portions of fat on the altar; and when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell on their faces.
Once we come to Christ and receive salvation, the forgiveness of our sins, we must pursue Him. We must go into the tent of meeting – the place of fellowship, where we walk with God in obedience and talk with Him in prayer and hear Him speak to us through His Word.
If we want to see the glory of God, we must surrender completely to the all-consuming fire of God’s holiness. Coming to faith in God is an “all or nothing” proposition. We don’t get forgiveness of our sins and then go on to live our lives as if they still belonged to us.
Do you want to see the glory of God? Have you recognized how empty and purposeless life is without Him?
Come to the altar and dwell in the tent of meeting. Then you will see the glory of God.