So far we have discovered that encountering God inspires His praise, discloses His transcendence, reveals His sufficiency, and declares His centrality. But there is a final element in our text. Encountering God demands His Glory. Paul says—To Him be the glory forever! Amen.
When you encounter God you understand that he is the only one in the universe to whom all Glory is due. This universe virtually shouts the Glory of God. All human kind will one day acknowledge his Glory. When we look at the marvelous plan of Salvation, focused on Jesus Christ, we see that one day all of the nations will bow before Him in praise and give glory to God.
Therefore, God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (Philippians 2:9-11)
We have the privilege to give glory to God here and now. He is certainly worthy of that glory. He is worthy of that praise and we do not have to wait for the day when Jesus returns. In fact, one of the highest privileges we have as human beings is giving glory to our Father—right now. When we are there, we are where He wants us to be.
One important lesson that we see from Paul’s doxology of praise is that we need to spend time considering the greatness of our awesome God. We must meditate on the implications of his existence. We must consider the wonderful nature of his plan of salvation. We must ponder his nature, character, and attributes. We must desire to experience his power and his grace. We must focus on God because he should be our focus. When we do, our “theology” will turn to “doxology,” and our lives will be lived in praise to God.
Pride becomes our greatest temptation and our cruelest enemy. Someday even our flesh will serve God by His Grace. In the day when creation is freed from its bondage to sin and the sons of God stand up in Resurrection bodies, then even whatever was once rejected and cursed will be made to fulfill the promises and demonstrate the power of God. All of this is illustrated by God’s treatment of Israel. That leads us to the doxology at the close of chapter 11, verse 33:
Have you ever come on anything quite like this extravagant generosity of God, this deep, deep wisdom? It’s way over our heads. We’ll never figure it out—O, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
Is there anyone around who can explain God?
Anyone smart enough to tell him what to do?
Anyone who has done him such a huge favor that God has to ask his advice?
Everything comes from him;
Everything happens through him;
Everything ends up in him.
Always glory! Always praise! (Romans 11:31-36)
If interested, you can download the entire study of The Letter to Christians at Rome