Chapter # 1 Paragraph # 1 Study # 14
Thesis: The credit for our deliverance goes to the Father.
Introduction: In our last study we considered the "will of God" as it relates to the impact of Jesus' Self-giving. Our conclusion in that study is that there are two elements of "deliverance" and Paul's use of "the will of the God" applies to both. On the one hand, we are to be delivered out of this present age by being transferred into the coming age. This is the Plan of God and will not be frustrated by anyone. On the other hand, we are delivered from the processes of this present age as we respond to God's "will" by faith. This "will" is regularly frustrated by reason of its dependence upon our "faith".
This evening we are going to look into the last portion of Paul's introductory comments as he ascribes "the glory" to "the God and Father of us". What is the significance of this ascription?
October 3, 2010
- I. What It Means.
- A. The term has multiple significant aspects.
- 1. On one hand, "the glory" of God, or anyone else, is the essential attributes that make the one under consideration what he/she is.
- 2. On another hand, "the glory" is some form of manifestation of those attributes that enable observers to perceive something true about the one under consideration (John 1:14 and 2:11).
- 3. Then, "the glory" is the linking of what the observers perceive to the one under consideration.
- B. Paul's ascription of "the glory" to "the God and Father of us" falls into this third aspect of the use of "glory".
- 1. Paul's ascription is, in effect, a declaration that our God and Father is the One Who, out of What He is, accomplished our "deliverance".
- 2. This declaration means that "God gets the credit".
- II. What It Signifies.
- A. It is deeply "T"heological.
- 1. Giving God the credit for accomplishing our deliverance means that there is some essential attribute(s) of God that moved Him to act on our behalf.
- 2. Giving God the credit also means that there were significant, particular, things that He had to do if we were to be "delivered".
- 3. Giving God the credit additionally means that He did what He had to do to fulfill that attribute in Himself that called for our deliverance.
- B. It is also deeply "t"heological.
- 1. From the very beginning, the "education" of the sensible elements of the creation (men and angels) was involved with tying truths to Truth so that the creature could enter into the experience of what God calls "Life" (in a prior study we called this finding clarity in the midst of the fog bank).
- 2. From the failure of Genesis 3, the process of tying truths to Truth was made complex by the insertion of deceptions that have to be weeded out.
- 3. In the Bible, the ascription of "the glory" is both complicated and critical on multiple levels.
- a. It directly affects the issue of "Life".
- 1) Creatures typically fail to understand because they misidentify both the essence and source of "Life".
- a) The reduction of "Life" to its mechanisms is deadly ("Life" is not physical satisfaction, soul-security, nor spirit-status; it is "Joy" as an abiding, not temporary, reality).
- b) The attribution of "Life" to the processes is also deadly ("Life" is not the satisfaction that arises from successfully applying the principles of how one obtains satisfaction, security, or status; it is "Joy" abiding).
- 2) The clarification aspect of "Life" is, among other things, directly connected to the issue of "ascribing glory".
- a) At a very profound level, men have been seduced into thinking that they will experience "Life" if they can, in some manner, get into position to be on the receiving end of the ascription of glory by other creatures.
- i. This seeking to be on the receiving end includes the escape from "blame" (the ascription is to be of a valuable matter, not of a vain matter).
- ii. This seeking from other creatures will fundamentally distort the seeker so that he will not only be "false" (John 7:18), but he will not be able to alter what he considers to be "the" processes of his pursuit (John 5:44) (he will fulfill the currently popular definition of "insanity").
- b) Even at the level of getting on the receiving end of the ascription of glory by God, the "Life" of God is not technically transmitted by the outcome of such ascription, but by the ascription itself.
- i. Many think that God's ascription of glory to a man/woman means that they should rejoice that they did what pleased God.
- ii. The fact, however, is not that they "did" but that God is pleased.
- 3) No one is truly alive as long as they are still the ultimate center of their thoughts and actions.
- b. It directly affects the identification of what is valuable and what is true.
- 1) These "identifications" are critical.
- 2) They are directly affected by the honest ascription of "the glory" to God.
- a) Acts 12:23 is a contrary illustration of the final outcome of misidentifying what is valuable and what is true.
- b) The content of biblical revelation includes the idea of a "shared" glory in which a man may claim to have accomplished certain results in tandem with his willingness to point to God as the Root of his accomplishment (Romans 12:3; 1 Corinthians 15:10 and Galatians 2:9).
- c) This "honest ascription" is the outworking of Galatians 2:20.