Enjoying God, Worshipping and becoming like Him
1 Peter 1:8
and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now,
but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory NASB
God wants to make us happy and blessed in the enjoyment of Himself so that in our enjoyment of Him we would overflow with praise and worship. Then as we increase in the enjoyment of God’s nature, as we worship Him we become more like Him, displaying with even greater intensity the glory of His virtue in ourselves as we take on and participate in the very nature of God.
2 Peter 1:2-4 – 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; 3 seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. 4 For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, in order that by them you might become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust. NASB
This cannot truly happen in us until we truly appreciate the virtue and Goodness of God’s own nature through the “true knowledge of Him.” We must come to know Him personally and intimately, to “know” Him truly in our heart. It is “through” this “true knowledge of Him” that His virtue is “multiplied” to us as Peter states, “Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” And this he tells us is how we become like God. We have “everything pertaining to life and godliness through the true knowledge of Him.” This is to say that we become like God or we bear His image and likeness in an increasing way, we “participate in the divine nature,” in “godliness,” through coming to know Him as His character is “multiplied” to us “in the knowledge of God and Jesus our Lord.” Therefore Peter tells us to “apply all diligence” in the exercise of our “faith” to become like Him and take on His wonderful virtue.
2 Peter 1:5-8 – 5 Now for this very reason also, applying all diligence, in your faith supply moral excellence, and in your moral excellence, knowledge; 6 and in your knowledge, self-control, and in your self-control, perseverance, and in your perseverance, godliness; 7 and in your godliness, brotherly kindness, and in your brotherly kindness, love. 8 For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they render you neither useless nor unfruitful in the true knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. NASB
Thus the manifest glory of God is increasing in intensity through our lives as we become more like Him, because in becoming like Him we therefore bear His image, with greater intensity we manifest and display His excellent goodness as reflectors of His image. This is why we were both created and saved. Consider Jesus words in Matthew 5:16 with this in mind.
Matthew 5:16 – 16 "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. NASB
And so God calls us to both worship Him and to become like Him, to bear His image, so that we might put on display His glory through our lives.
The meaning of worship is to “ascribe worth or value to something.” As we worship God, if it is truly motivated from the heart, we are praising Him because in our hearts we truly value the worth of His person. We value His glory, the sum total of His Goodness, the excellency of His attributes. We value and cherish His patience and mercy, His wisdom and love, His power and knowledge. As we grow in the personal knowledge of God and experience of Him through that knowledge, we grow in our appreciation of His glory, and because in our hearts we truly valuing His Goodness, we seek therefore by default to become more like Him because we truly value His nature and want to be like that ourselves. We value His love, so we want to be loving, because we appreciate love and seek after it to possess it fully. We value His wisdom, so we seek to become wise, because we have eaten the good fruit of wisdom, and experienced the pleasantness of her who is more valuable than rubies (Prov 3:13-18)! In this way we become what we worship. We long and thirst for Him, and glory in Him, then we long for Him again, and glory in Him again. We feast on the table He has prepared for us in His Word!
Psalm 42:1-2 – 1 As the deer pants for the water brooks, So my soul pants for Thee, O God.
2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God; When shall I come and appear before God? NASB
Psalm 63:1-5 – O God, Thou art my God; I shall seek Thee earnestly; My soul thirsts for Thee, my flesh yearns for Thee, In a dry and weary land where there is no water. 2 Thus I have beheld Thee in the sanctuary, To see Thy power and Thy glory. 3 Because Thy lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise Thee. 4 So I will bless Thee as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Thy name. 5 My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, And my mouth offers praises with joyful lips. NASB
Psalm 84:2 – 2 My soul longed and even yearned for the courts of the Lord; My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. NASB
This process of enjoying, worshipping and becoming like God is very pleasing to God. Grudem comments… “As we glorify God and enjoy him, Scripture tells us that he rejoices in us. We read, "As the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you" (Isa 62:5), and Zephaniah prophesies that the Lord "will rejoice over you with gladness, he will renew you in his love; he will exult over you with loud singing as on a day of festival" (Zeph 3:17-18).” (from Systematic Theology, Copyright © 1994 by Wayne Grudem)
But consider that even the wicked become what they worship.
Psalm 115:1-8 – 1 Not to us, O Lord, not to us, But to Thy name give glory Because of Thy lovingkindness, because of Thy truth. 2 Why should the nations say, "Where, now, is their God?"
3 But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases. 4 Their idols are silver and gold,
The work of man's hands. 5 They have mouths, but they cannot speak; They have eyes, but they cannot see; 6 They have ears, but they cannot hear; They have noses, but they cannot smell; 7 They have hands, but they cannot feel; They have feet, but they cannot walk; They cannot make a sound with their throat. 8 Those who make them will become like them, Everyone who trusts in them. NASB
See here how the “nations” are described as having “god’s that are idols which are the work of man’s hands,” dead lifeless things made by men. He says in verse 8, “those who make them will become like them, everyone who trusts in them.” See here that even the wicked become like what they worship, even if it is a dead and lifeless image made with their own hands. But notice here that the prophet told us where the glory and praise properly belonged, “to thy name give glory, because of thy lovingkindness because of thy truth.” Here we are told to worship God and give Him glory because He is worthy of our devoted worship. And there is also this element of trust in God. Not only do we value and worship Him, but we earnestly trust in Him to be our God and provide for us, deliver us, heal us and meet all of our needs and even our deepest spiritual needs. We were made as receptors to experience and enjoy the Goodness of God and also as reflectors to shine forth His virtue in our own being as we become like Him. See in these things that we ultimately begin to take on the nature of what we value, worship and trust in the most.
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The Lord is the Strength of My Life
Posted By Blogger to HeavensLight at 2/14/2014 08:06:00 AM