Idolatry and the Loss of Proper Orientation

The idolatry of both the common person and the cultural elite results at least in part from losing sight of the proper orientation.  This idolatry places a burden on the idols to come through for us or else suffer the devastating consequences of our collective disappointment.  However, if God’s pleasure and glory are ultimate and our neighbor’s good the penultimate goal, we will engage culture in the way that God has gifted, prepared and called us to do.

– Horton, Michael, Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World; Zondervan; copyright 214; Kindle Edition; page 162

Our Love…When Unhinged from its Proper Object…

Unhinged from its proper object – God’s glory and our neighbor’s good – our love becomes self-focused; our holy passions become vicious, driving us away from God’s approaching steps and away from each other.  We’re not living in the real world, the creation that God called into being and sustains by the word of his power; but in a make-believe world.  We are living as though God and our neighbors were made for us.  In other words, we are living unnatural lives – living as if we were or could become someone other than the true image of God, created to love God and each other.

– Horton, Michael, Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World; Zondervan; copyright 214; Kindle Edition; page 88

Our Sin – For Our Good and His Glory?

You live under God’s rule and nothing about you ever escapes his notice or evades his will.  It is a transforming thought to look back on your life and realize that at each point where you sinned – and that would be many times each day – God allowed you to do so for his good purposes.  He does not love your sin, tempt you to it, or cause it in any way, yet by permitting it, he ordains it for your good and his glory.

Duguid, Barbara; Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in our Weakness; P&R Publishing; Philipsburg, NJ; copyright 2013; Page 104

For God’s Glory to be Revealed in the Church…

For God’s glory to be revealed in the church, as Paul prayed, we must be satisfied in him individually and collectively, though we also along for the day we see Jesus face to face (Exodus 33:18; I Corinthians 13:2).  This means enjoying him as our greatest treasure, knowing beyond knowing that he loves us, being captivated by and grasping his love, living in a maturing relationship with him, repenting as a person, growing to glorify him more and more by grace with joy, sharing his fame with others, humbly serving those in need as he has served us, singing of his love, and praying for his church. The life lived to reveal the glory of our Father God results in our joy and other’s good as we become more like Jesus by the Spirit’s power.

– Driscoll, Mark; Who Do You Think You Are? Finding Your True Identity in ChristThomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, copyright 2013; Page 120

Outside of Christ, the Law Merely Reminds Us of How Far We Fall Short of God’s Glory

Outside of Christ, our hearing of the law merely reminded us constantly how far we fall short of God’s glory.  But the law has no power other than to guide those whom it has justified in Christ along with their pilgrimage in spite of every setback and failure.

Horton, Michael; The Gospel Driven Life: Being Good News People in a Bad News World; Baker Books; Grand Rapids, MI; Copyright 2009; page 139

This is the Most Foundational Strategy

What is this internal change that comes from “beholding the glory of God?”

It is the awakening of joy in Christ himself  and all that God is for us in him.  It is the awakening of a new taste of spiritual reality centering in Christ.  It is the capacity for a new sweetness and a new enjoyment of the glory of God in the Word of God.  Therefore, nothing is more important for us in life than to “behold the glory of the Lord.”  Satan, as Paul says (II Corinthians 4:4), uses all his devices to keep us from seeing “the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ.”   This is the most foundational strategy in the battle for joy – the strategic battle to see.

– Piper, John; When I Don’t Desire God: How to Fight for Joy; copyright 2004; Crossway Books; Wheaton, Il.; p. 66