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The church and the re-communication of God's Glory Print E-mail
Articles - Christian Living
Written by Oshea Davis   
Wednesday, 15 August 2007

          "The emanation or communication of the divine fullness, consisting in the knowledge of God, love to him, and joy in him, has relation indeed both to God and the creature: but it has relation to God as its fountain, as the thing communicated is something of its internal fullness.  The water in the stream is something of the fountain; and the beams of the sun are something of the sun.  And again, they have relation to God as their object: for the knowledge communicated, is the knowledge of God; and the love communicated, is the love of God; and the happiness communicated, is joy in God.  In the creature's knowing, esteeming, loving, rejoicing in, and praising God, the glory of God is both exhibited and acknowledged; his fullness is received and returned.  Here is both an emanation and re-emanation.  The refulgence shines upon and into the creature, and is reflected back to the luminary.  The beams of glory come from God, are something of God, and are refunded back again to their original.  So that the whole is of God, and in God, and to God; and he is the beginning, and the middle, and the end.

          And though it be true that God has respect to the creature in these things; yet his respect to himself, and to the creature, are not properly a double and divided respect.  What has been said, (chap. I. sect. 3, 4.) may be sufficient to show this.  Nevertheless, it may not be amiss here briefly to say a few things; though mostly implied in what has been said already.

          When God was about to create the world, he had respect to that emanation of his glory, which is actually the consequence of the creation, both with regard to himself and the creature.  He had regard to it as an emanation from himself, a communication of himself, and, as the thing communicated, in its nature returned to himself, as its final term.  And he had regard to it also as the emanation was to the creature, and as the thing communicated was in the creature, as its subject." (Jonathan Edwards, The End for which God Created the world)

          First, I must state that these paragraphs are Edwards at his best and really is a great summary of his book as a whole, The End for which God Created the World.  But the part that I desire to focus on are in these words. "In the creature's knowing, esteeming, loving, rejoicing in, and praising God, the glory of God is both exhibited and acknowledged; his fullness is received and returned.  Here is both an emanation and re-emanation.  The refulgence shines upon and into the creature, and is reflected back to the luminary.  The beams of glory come from God, are something of God, and are refunded back again to their original.  So that the whole is of God, and in God, and to God; and he is the beginning, and the middle, and the end... When God was about to create the world, he had respect to that emanation of his glory, which is actually the consequence of the creation, both with regard to himself and the creature. He had regard to it as an emanation from himself, a communication of himself, and, as the thing communicated, in its nature returned to himself, as its final term."

          In this understanding it is clear to see why the church is so important.  The church is so important because the church is far more capable, than any part of creation, to return, reflect and re-communicate to God as the Final and Original morning star.  The act of enjoying and esteeming God is the act of reflecting the Glory of God shone upon you back to God as this communicated glory of God finds its end at the Source from whence is came.  Therefore, as Edwards says, "So that the whole is of God, and in God, and to God; and he is the beginning, and the middle, and the end."  We are the height of God's creation in that the Glory of God, which is communicated, is shown back to God and us.  But why us?  To us because as we see it, appraise it and enjoy it in worship we are in the very same act reflecting it back to God.  Creation makes known God's Worth and Excellence, we then see it, as the moon reflects the splendor of God's fame back to Him, as we perceive and rejoice in our God.  As redeemed sinners from the grave being brought into the Kingdom of His Son of His love, we are in the greatest place to 1) understand, 2.) Love and 3.) Enjoy God best.  Thus, we are equally able to reflect the light of God's Glory back to Him best.

          This reflecting of God's Glory back to Him, which the church does, makes God look Supreme, Gloriously shining forth with infinite Excellence.  Romans 11:36, "For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen."  Colossians 1:18, "And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence [Supremacy]."  Therefore, it is gravely important for God's bride, the church, to be continuous in understanding and rejoicing in our God, for this is our purpose.  To reflect the splendor of God's Fame and Glory back to Him, so that when the world sees the church doing this, it becomes obvious that all things are to, from and for God; that He is the beginning, middle and end of all things.  The churches rejoicing and worshiping God, with their lives, in all things and in all times heightens the grandeur and boundlessness of Jesus Christ's Supremacy in all things.   

          If Jesus Christ is truly loved by the church then it should be our great joy to do all we can to fulfill our purpose that God created and fashioned for us.  To take in, perceive the worth and beauty of God and re-communicate back to God for the entire world to see by our rejoicing and worshiping God.  Worship here is not a 2-hour church service on Sunday.  I ask how well would the moon be at communicating the truth and beauty of the sun if it only shinned and reflect its light once a week?  Our lives ought to be lived hourly in understanding, loving, rejoicing and worshiping our Great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Oh God our Redeemer give us the strength to do so, for your Glory let it be done. Amen!

 

Part 2:

What is true worship?

         "Therefore, the external glory of God consists in the communication of these.  The communication of his knowledge is chiefly in giving the knowledge of himself: for this is the knowledge in which the fullness of God's understanding chiefly consists.  And thus we see how the manifestation of God's glory to created understandings, and their seeing and knowing it, is not distinct from an emanation or communication of God's fullness, but clearly implied in it.  Again, the communication of God's virtue or holiness, is principally in communicating the love of himself.  And thus we see how, not only the creature's seeing and knowing God's excellence, but also supremely esteeming and loving him, belongs to the communication of God's fullness.  And the communication of God's joy and happiness, consists chiefly in communicating to the creature that happiness and joy which consists in rejoicing in God, and in his glorious excellency; for in such joy God's own happiness does principally consist.  And in these things, knowing God's excellency, loving God for it, and rejoicing in it, and in the exercise and expression of these, consists God's honor and praise; so that these are clearly implied in that glory of God, which consists in the emanation of his internal glory". (Jonathan Edwards, The End for which God Created the World)

          What is true worship in light of understanding that God does all He does out of love to Him and, therefore, to Glorify Himself?  Here is Edwards's statement, "And in these things, knowing God's Excellency, loving God for it, and rejoicing in it, and in the exercise and expression of these, consists God's honor and praise."  Why is this so?

         First, "The communication of his knowledge is chiefly in giving the knowledge of himself", second, "the communication of God's virtue or holiness, is principally in communicating the love of himself", third, "the communication of God's joy and happiness, consists chiefly in communicating to the creature that happiness and joy which consists in rejoicing in God."  Remember God does all things for His Glory out of love and enjoyment to Himself.  Therefore, in the very act of a creature receiving the knowledge, holiness and happiness of God and then in return the act of the creature knowing God and loving God is in itself the communication and display of God's Glory.  For what you enjoy you Glorify!  The act of seeking enjoyment outside of yourself is a declaration of your lack or greatness in ourself, which leaves you unable to find perfect happiness in ourself.  Meaning whatever you seek out to know, love and enjoy you Glorify this as Great and Wonderful.
            When Christ comes to you to heal, redeem and save you He does not do this by imparting and giving you vague impersonal therapeutic moralistic help.  What He gives is HIMSELF and HIS grace, and HIS love and HIS saving, etc.  Which is why Edwards has this to say about what is being communicated us.  1.) The knowledge, "for this is the knowledge in which the fullness of God's understanding chiefly consists", 2.) the holiness , "is principally in communicating the love of himself.", 3.) the happiness, "consists chiefly in communicating to the creature that happiness and joy which consists in rejoicing in God, and in his glorious excellency; for in such joy God's own happiness does principally consist."  Therefore, if the knowledge, love and happiness we receive is God and it is these in which we truly are consumed with, comprehending, loving and enjoying in; then it is God who is being Glorified and who's Glory is being communicated.

          Therefore, it becomes easy to discover what is the core of true and authentic worship.  Real worship consists in the many and various exercises and expressions of; 1.) Knowing God's perfections or Excellencies 2.) Loving and esteeming God for who He is with all His perfections, 3.) Enjoying and finding happiness in God's Excellencies.  True holiness for the saint is at is most core level: love toward God.  For if you love God; then you love the things God is and the things He loves and hates the things He is not and which He hates.  If you love God in that manner you will be truly set apart and Holy for God.  This is a life of worship.  Which is why it is so important to be picky on every little detail about who your God is, for the better you know these things the better equipped you are to live a life of worship toward God.  If you love for God is strong, then it should be proven by how hard we go out our way to seek and discover every possible command of Christ, so as to obey it and honor our God.  If you truly say you know God then your knowledge of God and His word will prove it.  Can you quote more scripture or more movies or jokes or etc. What you know most about is what you prove you prize most.  If your enjoyment of God is strong then what you daily seek to find entertainment in will prove if God is your treasure or sin.  What does your life prove, what does your life truly worship?

 

(This article is a section from a book I am currently writing.  "God Fever Fails,  Love Never Fails"  Please bear in mind I have not have a chance to edit this as I ought at this point.)

 Sincerely Yours in Christ: Oshea Davis

 
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