A devotional thought from Geoff Ashley for “Knowing God”
John 17:24: “Father, I desire those You have given Me to be with Me where I am. Then they will see My glory, which You have given Me because You loved Me before the world’s foundation.”
“V-J Day in Times Square” is a famous photograph by Alfred Eisenstaedt. In it, a sailor and a nurse kiss in the middle of a crowded street. The photo was taken on August 14, 1945, in response to President Truman’s declaration of victory in the Pacific and the cessation of WWII hostilities. Following the announcement, celebration spontaneously erupted in the streets of cities around the US.
Unlike a game show, there were no cue cards calling for celebration or applause. Glorious moments need no prompting for glorious response. It is simply natural in the moment.
The gospel is an even more glorious encounter. In light of the good news of the gospel, praise is natural. When God’s people see His glory in Jesus Christ, they respond.
Paul is an excellent example of this natural overflow. Often while writing his epistles on the nature and character of God, Paul erupted in worship through the penning of a doxology (“word of praise”). Romans 11:33-36 is one of the best examples of this as Paul interrupted his theological argument to spontaneously delight in the wonder and awe of these theological truths.
When faced with news of great joy, praise is inevitable. It is only if we do not find the news truly lovely and good that we do not respond.
Pause and Reflect
• Praise is natural unless it is hindered. What hinders you from more fully delighting in the glory of God?
• What must happen in your life for these hindrances to worship to be overcome?
• How can you posture yourself and arrange your life so that you are better able to see and savor the glory of God in the gospel?