GLORY TO GOD IN HIGHEST HEAVEN
- Glory to God in highest heaven,
and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”(Luke2:14) NLT
Host of angels from heaven sang this song on the night in which Jesus was born. God was glorified in the highest heaven when Jesus was born at Bethlehem. God was glorified not only at the time of His birth, but during his entire earthly life and even at the death on the cross. Glory to God reached to its highest peak when he died, rose again and ascended to heaven. Now we see Son of man Glorified and seated on the right hand of majesty. Glorification can refer to either the giving of praise or the manifestation of that which is worthy of praise. “Whosoever offereth praise glorifieth me” (Psalm 50:23). Love of God that was hidden in the heart of God was manifested to heavenly angels when Jesus was born and placed in the manger of Bethlehem. That made them to glorify God at the time of His birth (Eph.1:4;1 Jn.4:9).
Angels manifested their joy by singing the hymns. So, glory of God reached to the highest heaven. Great Commentator Matthew Henry has rightly expressed, all the “works of God are for his glory, but the redemption of the world is for his glory in the highest.” Angel came to the shepherds and said, “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord”. (Luke 2:8-14). In Ephesian Chapter 1, Paul speaks about our redemption, predestination, adoption into God’s family with the sole objective “to the praise of His glory”.(Eph.1:6,12,14) Purpose of Creation. God created the universe for His glory. “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands” (Psalm 19:1).
David wrote this Psalm, by admiring the grandiosity of nature and glistening stars. We know from Scripture each one of us has been created with a purpose, of glorifying God. Lord said about Jacob, “I have created him for my glory” (Isa.43:7). But when man committed sin, he fell short of the glory of God. Paul writes about two crimes committed by the fallen man. Though they knew God, failed to glorify Him neither they were thankful to Him. Instead they “changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man,…and four footed beasts,and creeping things” (Romans 1:21- 22). Life of Jesus Christ manifested the Glory of God Not only the birth of Christ but His whole life on earth was also a display of God’s Glory. As a young boy, He manifested the God’s Glory in the temple of God at Jerusalem; those who heard him were astonished at His understanding and answers. There He was busy in His heavenly father’s business.
John rightly pointed out about His life on earth, “Word was made flesh and dwelt among us and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father” (John 1:14). In all the miracles performed, Jesus manifested God’s Glory. “This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana,of Galilee and manifested forth his glory” (John 2:11) He proved Himself to be the Son of God, through His words and deeds. At the triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem at the close of His ministry, multitude sang the same song of the angels with minor changes. They rejoiced and praised God with a loud voice. “…Peace in Heaven and glory in the highest”(Luke 19:3738) He came into the world to accomplish ONE mission that is to Glorify His father.
From the beginning to the end, His life brought Glory to God in the highest. Christ Glorified God on the cross John throughout the gospel draws our attention to, how Christ brought glory to God by His life and death. He devoted more space to describe the last hours of our Lord’s life and reminds us how His death could bring glory to God. From Chapter 12 -17 the word glorification appears many times. “The hour is come,that the son of man should be glorified”.We see here the grain of wheat falling on the ground to die (Jn 12: 23-24).
When Jesus spoke these words, “Father glorify thy name”heaven responded to it, “I have both glorified it,and will glorify it again”(v.2728) In John 17 out of seven petitions, three of them are related to glorification of Father and Son. 1. As an obedient Son Christ glorifying the Father (17:1) 2. He prayed for restoration of His eternal glory (v.5) 3. He desires that saints should see and share His glory throughout the eternity (v.24). It is on the Cross, God the Father has displayed His love, His holiness, His righteousness, His grace and mercy to the fullest extent. So, God the Father exalted His Son and given Him a Name above all other Names. Now we see Jesus crowned with glory and honour. We recognize Christ as LORD that brings Glory to God in the highest of Heaven (Phil.2:9-11; Heb 2:9). Centurion who was in charge of crucifixion was the first man who beheld the cross and glorified God (Luke 23:47). In the eternity we all will be occupied with one thing; we will behold the Lamb that is slain and glorify the Father.
By Dr. Koshy Mathew