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Chapter XVI.

Showing How Christians Are To Seek And Obtain Favor And Glory Through Christ, In Heaven.

Hold not thy peace, O God of my praise, etc.Ps. 109:1, etc

This is a prayer of the eternal Son of God. The purport or substance of this prayer, may be more fully expressed in this manner:

“My Heavenly Father! thou knowest that in this world I have not sought my own glory, but the glory of thy holy name, and the salvation of all men: and therefore am I so bitterly persecuted, blasphemed, contemned, and vilified. Nevertheless, this is my comfort, that thou art my Father, and that I am thy only begotten Son: lo! this is my glory, in heaven with thee. And this my glory wilt thou in due time manifest and bring to light; that by thy glorifying of me, the world may see who it is whom they have blasphemed and persecuted.” John 12:28.

2. Hence we are to learn, that such have the greatest glory and praise in heaven, who in this world are the most persecuted for righteousness' sake. This we may gather from the example of our Lord himself. From him, the true Book of Life, we may learn true wisdom. But that we may the better understand that his example and holy life are our Book of Life, let us carefully observe the following considerations: (1) Christ never sought upon earth his own glory in anything, but accounted it sufficient for him, that God alone was his glory. So let us, in like manner, reject the empty glory and praises of this world, in whatever we do; endeavoring only that God be glorified in us, saying, “Ah, Lord God! give us also such a heart, even the heart of Christ thy Son, that we may have our glory in Thee alone, and not in ourselves; that we may have our glory in heaven, and not upon earth.”

3. (2) It was the highest glory of the Lord Jesus Christ, that he was the only begotten Son of God. And for this reason did the world persecute, vilify, and blaspheme him. Here let 219 our prayer be like this: “Grant us also, Holy Father, that we may count it our greatest glory and joy, that we are thy children; that so we may also obtain the eternal enjoyment of thy love and promise, and may, by virtue of our adoption, come to possess in thee an everlasting inheritance. Remind us, also, that if the world hate, envy, reproach, and persecute us, it has done the same to thy dear and holy child Jesus.”

4. (3) It is the glory of the Lord Jesus, that he wrought so many divine works, that he went about continually doing the most wondrous acts of grace and beneficence to mankind: and that he did this from pure love only, and from the highest compassion for the miseries of fallen nature; although he received nothing but hatred and most heinous ingratitude in return. “Grant us, blessed God, grateful and faithful hearts, so that we may be always ready to do good to as many as we possibly can; and that we may never be deterred from acts of charity, by the unthankfulness of the world, ascribing not to ourselves, but to thy name only, the glory of all that we do.”

5. (4) It is the highest glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, that out of pure love, he laid down his life for us; that he purchased us with his own blood; that he was obedient to the Father, even unto death; that with the greatest meekness he endured the vilest reproach; and with the utmost patience, bore the pains of the cross. “O God, our glory, help us, that we may also overcome our enemy with love; that we may subdue our flesh with godly obedience; bear the reproach of the world with the meekness and long suffering of Christ; obtain the victory through patience; and being thus made strong in the Lord, be more than conquerors through him that loved us!”

6. (5) The highest glory of the blessed Jesus, is his exaltation to the right hand of God, and the name given him, which is “above every name; that, at the name of Jesus, every knee, both in heaven and in earth, should bow, and all tongues confess him to be their Lord.” Phil. 2:9-11. “Help, O gracious God! that we may esteem it our highest glory to be made conformable to our ever-blessed Head and Saviour; that so when he shall hereafter appear in power and majesty, we also may appear with him in glory, after we have here endured the contempt of the world, and continued faithful to the end, when every man shall have praise of God.” 1 Cor. 4:5; 2 Cor. 4:17.

7. (6) The glory of Christ the Lord is, that he is the only Head of his Church in general, and of every member thereof in particular; a glorious King of his people; and an everlasting High priest, making intercession for us. “Help us with thy grace, O God most gracious, that we may evermore account it our greatest glory, that we are members of thy Son, and subjects of his kingdom, and that we may enjoy all the privileges and benefits purchased by his high-priestly intercession, sacrifice, and benediction.”

8. (7) Another branch of the glory of Christ is, that God has most wonderfully displayed and magnified his name throughout the whole world: and has (in opposition to all his enemies, blasphemers, and persecutors, who would not own him to be the Son of God), in the most public and solemn manner attested his cause, declared him to be his Son by mighty signs and wonders, and established faith in 220 his name amongst many nations and languages. Notwithstanding that God held his peace for a while, and vailed the glory of his Son under the mystery of the cross; yet did it break forth the more gloriously like the sun. For, “out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God hath shined. Our God shall come, and shall not keep silence.” For though God, who is our glory, may seem now and then to be silent, and to hold his peace when we are insulted and persecuted; yet is there nothing more certain, than that after the short hour of probation, he will no longer keep silence, but with a high hand deliver us from the reproach which we suffered, and “remove his stroke away from us,” that we may rejoice in his salvation. Ps. 39:10. However, “it doth not yet appear what we shall then be.” 1 John 3:2.

9. The conclusion of the whole is this: It is God alone who is to be our glory; it is not the world, nor wealth, nor honor, nor greatness, nor the arm of flesh, that I may call my glory; but God, and only God, is my glory! Wherefore, “let not the wise man glory in his wisdom” (as it is written), “neither let the mighty man glory in his might, nor let the rich man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth, glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord.” Jer. 9:23, 24; 1 Cor. 1:31.

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