The Glories of Christ: His Eternal Glories

The Glories of Christ: His Eternal Glories

We have previously considered the Pre-Incarnate and Incarnate Glories of Christ, and we now come to consider His Eternal Glories. Needless to say such is the brilliance and the extent of these glories, that here as before, we find ourselves overwhelmed, and feeling that the only possible response is to cast ourselves prostrate at His feet. In John 17, the Lord says to His Father, “And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.” (John 17:5 AV) However, in that same prayer, the Lord went on to say, “Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovest me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17:24 AV) Note the two statements “…the Glory which I had with thee,” and ..”my Glory which Thou hast given me.” We learn from these statements, that there are two aspects of the Lord’s eternal glory: First, the recovery of His pre-incarnate Glory, but now in addition – those glories which the Father has given Him upon the completion of the work He had given Him to do at Calvary. We could call them the “acquired” glories of the Lord Jesus. Let us consider some of these glories together:

The Acquired Glories of the Lord Jesus:

The first thing we should note is that the glorification of Christ is always spoken about in the past tense. Sometimes we speak as though the glorification of Christ is some future event. But no! It is already an accomplished fact. He has already been glorified (Eph. 1:19-23; Phil. 2:5-11). Of course the display of His glory to a wondering universe awaits a future day of revelation, when Christ will be worshipped be all created intelligences. We read “And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and such as be in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying,‘Blessing and honour, and glor y and power, be to him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.’ ” (Rev. 5:13)

His Positional Glories

There are several key scriptures that emphasise the glories that Christ has acquired “positionally” as follows:

HIGHLY EXALTED:

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him…” Phil. 2:9-11

The word “wherefore,” takes us back to the preceding verses. In these verses, the Spirit of God has been telling us about the self-abnegation of Christ – His becoming of no reputation, and describing step, after downward step, until we find Him obedient to the point of death, even the death of the Cross. So, it is because of the obedience of Christ, that took Him so low, that God has elevated Him so High, and there is coming a day, when in all the universe, and reaching even into Hades itself,every knee shall bow at His footstool. (Not that those in Hades will be saved, but they will acknowledge His glory.)

Joseph is perhaps the best illustration of Christ in His humiliation and exaltation. Joseph passed through deep waters in his lifetime. Hated by His brethren; sold into slavery; slandered by Potiphar’s wife; suffered at the hands of the Gentiles. But all of this changed overnight. Pharaoh had dreams that troubled him and Joseph was summoned. Before the day was out, Joseph was Prime Minister of Egypt. Later his brethren came down, and they bowed before him on several occasions even before they knew he was Joseph. But when the revelation came, they were afraid and bowed down before him. They, who had despised his dreams of their sheaves bowing down to his sheave, and of the sun and moon bowing down to his star, now fulfilled that dream by giving him glory.

Yes, God has reversed the verdict of men concerning His Son. They gave Him a cross; God has given Him the Crown. They gave Him a tree; God has given Him a Throne. They covered Him with shame but God has covered Him with Glory.

He fills the throne,
The throne above,
He fills it without wrong,
The object of His Father’s love, The theme of angel’s song.

FAR ABOVE ALL:

“… He[God ] raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named…” Eph. 1:20-23

This verse brings before us further revelation regarding the glorification of Christ. It was the “working of God’s mighty power,” that raised Jesus from the dead. Nothing could stand in the way of Christ leaving the sepulcher.

 

Neither the stone, nor the seal, nor the soldiers. These were swept aside – Hallelujah! Christ arose. Notice that He is now “far above.” The phrase “principalities and powers,” has to do with the hosts of spiritual beings – the angels and such like – whereas the ter m “might and dominion” would refer to the authority delegated by God to men on the earth. But whatever, He is far above all. We sometimes sing the chorus:

Far above all, Far above all,
Jesus the Crucified, Far above all, Kings and their Kingdoms around us may fall,
But Jesus my Saviour is far above all.

AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD:

Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.” 1 Pet. 3:22

He [God] raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand” Eph. 1:20

Throughout scripture, the “Right Hand,” is seen to be the place of favour, the place of power, and Christ has been elevated to His Father’s own right hand. The Lord Jesus said himself whilst here“For the Father judgeth no man, but hath committed all judgment unto the Son:” (John 5:22) It is the Son who holds the scepter of universal power, and it is the Son who will “rule the nations with a rod of iron.” God had decreed it, and it will come to pass -“Yet have I set My King upon My Holy hill of Zion.” (Ps. 2:6) and again ‘thou shalt break them in pieces with a rod of iron, thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”(Ps. 2:9)

HIS INHERITANCE IN THE SAINTS:

…That ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the richesofthegloryofhisinheritance in the saints,” Eph. 1:18

We rightly revel in passages that speak of our inheritance in Him, and of course we look forward with anticipation to the day when we shall enter into it in fullness. However, we hear very little about ‘the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the Saints” What a wondrous thought is this – that we as saints are the inheritance of the Lord. We are those whom the Lord refers to when speaking to His Father when spoke about .”..those whom thou has given me.” (John 17:24), and in this sense, we are His inheritance passed on by the Father.

His Glorious Names:

In the last book of our Bible, accolade after accolade is given to our blessed Lord. Title after illustrious title is conferred upon Him, to magnify His Glory. Here are some of those great titles he bears, all of them emphasizing a different aspect of the Glory that belongs to Him.

He is the faithful witness; the first begotten from the dead and the Prince of the Kings of the earth; He is Alpha and Omega; The Almighty; He is Lord in the midst of the Churches; He is the Lion of the tribe of Judah; the Lamb in the midst of the throne; He is the Lamb who stands on Mount Zion; He is Faithful and True; The Word of God; He is the root and the offspring of David, the bright and morning Star; and He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords; Each of these titles carries a volume of truth in itself, that magnifies the person of our Lord in some unique way. Confronted with the many names and titles of our Lord Jesus, we agree with the hymn writer when he wrote:

Join all the glorious names of wisdom love and power,
Those mortals ever knew that angels ever bore,
All are too mean to speak His worth,
Too mean to set our Saviour forth.

His Ultimate Glories:

As we draw our meditation to its close we wish to look at scenes where the Glory of Christ comes to its climax. The final chapters of the book of Revelation tell the story of one victory after another -the ultimate triumph of the Crucified. Revelation 19 opens with four great Hallelujahs. Let’s examine these four acclamations together:

And after these things I heard a great voice of much people in heaven, saying, Alleluia; Salvation, and glory, and honour, and power, unto the Lord our God: For true and righteous are his judgments: for he hath judged the great whore, which did corrupt the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of his servants at her hand. And again they said, Alleluia. And her smoke rose up for ever and ever.” (Rev. 19:1-3 AV) and these first peals of praise finds a twofold echo in the Hallelujahs of the four and twenty elders and the four living ones, and again, in the thunderous voice of the great multitude, “as the voice of many waters, and as the voice of mighty thunderings saying ‘Hallelujah, for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.’ ”

These outbursts of praise are occasioned by the fact that the false bride, that great whore, Mystery Babylon has been judged, and now the time has come to unveil the true bride -the Bride of Christ.

Also the corrupt city Babylon has been destroyed, and now the City of God is unveiled as the source of power and administration during the reign of Christ upon the earth, and ultimately in the New Creation. The Lord makes the final strokes that will subdue all enemies beneath His feet as He emerges as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, with all the armies of Heaven following Him, The scenes of victory and glory follow one after another in rapid sequence: The defeat of the Beast and the false prophet;The binding of Satan; The introduction of Christ’s reign where once they cried “Away with Him. Crucify Him, we will not have this man to reign over us.” Then the ultimate victory when at the end of His 1000 year reign, Satan musters forces against the Lord and His anointed, and Satan is cast into the Lake of fire with his cohorts – The Beast and the False prophet – and all their followers. The universe is rid of that ‘trinity of evil” that sought to usurp the “blessed Trinity.” Then God’s great final assize, out there in the cold darkness of space – the Great White Throne – where the Lord Jesus sits as Judge of the dead small and great – where every last vestige of sin and rebellion that defiled God’s creation, is expunged from the universe.

In closing these meditations on the glories of Christ, we readily confess that, at best, we see ‘through a glass darkly”, but even that is surely enough to inspire us to add our Hallelujahs to that of hosts above – to join in that great Hallelujah chorus that shall resound for all of eternity.

And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, ‘Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever.’ ” (Rev. 5:13).

 

Twitter Digg Delicious Stumbleupon Technorati Facebook Email

William Burnett

William Burnett was born and raised in Scotland, and spent his entire professional life in the Oil refining industry. He was seconded to Canada by his employer in 1972, and accepted early retirement in 1994. He has been a "tentmaker," - working in business, whilst ministering among the assemblies - since his late teen years. Early retirement has enabled him to undertake a much wider sphere of itinerant ministry throughout North America, and abroad. He also sits on the board of Counsel Magazine, and contributes regularly to various publication, including Uplook, Precious Seed and the Choice Gleanings Calendar. He and his wife Beth reside in Oakville, Ontario, where they are in happy fellowship in Hopedale Assembly. They have three married sons, and eight grandchildren.