(If you would like to download the PowerPoint presentation for this sermon, Click Here – Soli Deo Gloria & Thanksgiving )
Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
November 19, 2017
Soli Deo Gloria and Thankfulness
I greatly appreciate David’s sermon last week on Soli Deo Gloria: The Glory of God Through Ordinary Lives as the fifth sermon in our series on the five solas in recognition of the 500th Anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation started by Luther’s nailing of his 95 theses on the door of the castle church in Wittenberg, Germany on October 31, 1517. (See: Soli Deo Gloria – The Glory of God through Ordinary Lives) This morning I want to prepare you for our Thanksgiving activities this week by reiterating and expanding on some of the things David pointed out last week and then tying that to the Pilgrims and having a heart of thanksgiving.
The five solas are brief statements that encompass crucial Biblical truths recovered during the Reformation period. Each of them are linked together in an unbreakable chain with soli deo gloria – God’s glory alone – usually listed last because it is the culmination and purpose of the other four.
Sola Scriptura – Scripture alone – expresses the crucial doctrine that God’s revelation of Himself in His scriptures is the final authority for life and godliness and the best expression of His glory this side of heaven. As we shall see, everything in Creation is an expression of God’s glory, but it is in His word that He has revealed His nature, character, will and work. It is the law of the Lord that is perfect and restores the soul. It is the testimony of the Lord which is sure and makes wise the simple. It is the precepts of the Lord which are right and rejoices the heart. It is the commandments of the Lord that are pure and enlighten the eyes. It is the judgments of the Lord that are true and righteous altogether. It is the fear of the Lord that is the beginning of knowledge and wisdom and it is clean, enduring forever. The Scriptures give warning to those that stray from them and there is blessing in keeping them. That is why David had such a love for God’s word and desired it more than gold or honey (Psalm 19:7-11). (See: Sola Scriptura)
When anything else is used as a competing source of authority or revelation, it obscures or even hides God’s glory, and God will not suffer His glory to be given to another (Isaiah 42:8). That is the reason there are such strong commands such as Exodus 20:3-6 against having other gods, idolatry and false worship. The Bible, not other religious writings, traditions, organizations or people, is our ultimate authority. All writings, traditions and the teachings of people and organizations are to be compared to the Scriptures and judged by them and are to be rejected if they conflict with the sacred writings inspired – breathed out – by God.
Sola Gratia – Grace alone – expresses the glory of God in the truth that sinners have no merit of their own and can make no claim on God. Though all men justly deserve God’s punishment for their sins, it is God Himself who by His own character and for His own purposes loves and redeems sinners. As David pointed out last week from Ephesians 1, God’s redemption and salvation of sinful man through Jesus Christ is to “the praise of the glory of His grace.” Anything that advocates the idea that man can have merit before God by his own efforts is not only a lie that heaps further condemnation on the man, but it strikes against God’s glory. (See: Sola Gratia)
Sola Fide – Faith alone – expresses the crucial doctrine that man is justified as a gift by God’s grace through faith alone in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. Justification is an act that glorifies God by demonstrating Him to be both just and the justifier of those who have faith in Jesus (Romans 3:26). Saving faith is to result in the praise, glory and honor of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:7). Anything that promotes the idea that man can justify himself before God slanders the Lord in denying the sufficiency of Christ’s atonement which would make God unjust and a liar. (See: Sola Fide)
Solus Christus – Christ alone – expresses the crucial doctrine that the person and work of Jesus Christ alone is the source and means of salvation. You can neither gain it for yourself nor receive it from any other source than Jesus Christ. He is the only savior of mankind (Acts 4:12) and the only mediator between God and man (1 Timothy 2:5). He is the way, the truth and the life and no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6). All of this is to the glory of God. (See: Solus Christus)
Jesus’ incarnation was marked by angels giving praise saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with home He is pleased” (Luke 2:13-14). His years of ministry in teaching, healing and working miracles were all done for the glory of God (John 7:18). Jesus Himself said in His high priestly prayer in John 17:4, “I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do.” His death, burial and resurrection were all to the glory of God (Romans 6:4) and His exaltation is also to God’s glory. Philippians 2:10-11 foretells of the future day when every knee will bow and “every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
The Reformers’ call to soli deo gloria was not only the culmination of the solas of salvation – by God’s grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone – but also their understanding of the Biblical purpose for everything. Everything is to be for the glory of God alone. This was in contrast to the practice of Roman Catholicism which divided sacred and secular. The monks and priests were set apart to living a life of doing sacred things with occasional secular activities necessary for life while everyone else was seen as living a secular life punctuated with occasional sacred activities. The reformers rejected this dichotomy and proclaimed that everything done in life had a sacred purpose in bringing glory to God regardless of whether it was a mundane chore of life, such as cleaning the house, or some great creative work done expressly for congregational worship of God, such as writing and performing a hymn. The scriptures are clear that everything is for the glory of God.
The Glory of God Displayed
Before we look at a few of the many, many Scriptures that speak of God’s glory, let me quickly explain what is meant by glory. The common Hebrew word group translated as glory, dWbK2 / kabod, carries the idea of weighty either in the sense of amount, as in abundance, or in the sense of being noteworthy and impressive, as in being honorable, glorious, splendid. Context gives the specifics about what is being described with these characteristics. The Greek word group, dovxa / doxa gained an equivalence in New Testament usage to the Hebrew word already cited and came to denote “‘divine and heavenly radiance,’ the ‘loftiness and majesty’ of God, and ‘even the being of God’ and His word” (TDNT #1391).
The glory of God begins with Himself and existed prior His creation of anything. In John 17:5 Jesus speaks of the glory which He had with the Father before the world existed. Glory belongs to God by His very nature. Anything described as the glory of God is only an expression or reflection of what intrinsically belongs to Him. John Piper well defines God’s glory as “the radiance of the worth and beauty and greatness of God Himself.”
The glory of God demonstrated in time begins with Creation itself. Genesis 1 begins the proclamation by explaining what God did as well as the order and time frame He did it. Those that reject Genesis as an historical narrative diminish God’s glory by their disbelief of what He clearly states and slander His character as a liar and deceiver. His glory is magnified by Creating everything in a manner that defies human comprehension, but then, how can finite creatures understand the infinite? How can those entrapped within the time-space continuum understand how God did things before He created the natural laws that now restrict what He has created?
Psalm 19 begins, “The heavens are telling of the glory of God; And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.” They declare the glory of God by demonstrating His immensity, power and beauty. The size of the universe and the power of the stars within it are beyond actual comprehension. We assign numbers but can you actually understand what such numbers represent? You understand the difference between traveling 1 mile, 10 miles, 100 miles and 1,000 miles, but can you grasp how far the distance of a light year actually is at 5,865,696,000,000 miles (5.866 trillion miles)? What about a million of them or a billion of them? What is a million trillion or worse, a billion trillion miles? Would it make a difference to you if something is 10 billion trillion miles away or only 9 billion trillion miles? The figures are too immense to grasp their reality.
What about power? This is harder to describe than distance, but here is a quick example. The total output of all power plants in the world in 2008 was 2.31 terawatts or 3,097,761,000 hp. The Sun has many types of energy flowing out of it, but measuring just the light energy striking the state of Texas at noon is about 700 terawatts or over 300 times the total output of all the powerplants in the world. If there was no atmosphere, it would receive 952 terawatts or over 400 times the total output of all energy plants in the world. But Texas is 93 million miles from the Sun, so its surface area only receives about one 101 billionth of the light energy of the Sun. To put it another way, in one second, the Sun produces more than 416 billion times more energy in just one second than all the powerplants on earth. And that is only its light energy. The Sun is only a medium sized star and there are billions of stars. God created all those stars on fourth day of Creation and that did not even make Him tired.
There is also the beauty of the heavens beyond our atmosphere. This aspect of the glory of God we know very, very little about because we are restricted to telescopes and space vehicles within our own solar system. What we have seen with space probes such as Voyager I & II, Cassini, Galileo and New Horizons surprised us and stirred the imagination of what may exist in places we cannot see – but God sees it all, and all of it is for His glory. The glory of God displayed in the heavens should cause us to respond as David does in Psalm 8:4, “What is man that You take thought of him, And the son of man that you care for him?”
Then there is God’s glory displayed on this planet. Isaiah 6:3 records the Seraphim calling out, “Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of Hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.” The Psalms describe God’s glory displayed in rain, hail, lightening, thunder, earthquakes, volcanoes, abundance of food and vegetation, the sea and all within it (Psalm 29; 72; 96; 104; 148). God pointed to aspects of His creation in His rebuke of Job calling on Him to consider things such as the Earth, the seas, weather phenomena, constellations, and all sorts of animals including Behemoth and Leviathan which are now extinct. God’s glory caused Job to repent in dust and ashes declaring “Therefore I have declared that which I did not understand, Things too wonderful for me, which I did not know” (Job 38-42).
God’s glory is also seen in the Old Testament in His care of all He has created and especially in His relationship with Israel. This is seen not only in the many miracles displayed in bringing them out of Egypt and sustaining them in the wilderness (Exodus, Psalm 66; 106; 136), but also in His sustaining them throughout their history, forgiving them and promising them a future restoration. Salvation is a reoccurring theme of God’s glory such as expressed in Psalm 79:9, “Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of Your name; And deliver us and forgive us our sins for Your name’s sake.”
The same themes can be found throughout the New Testament, but the major focus in it is God’s glory displayed in Jesus Christ and the salvation that He secured and offers to man including His promised return for those that belong to Him. I have already pointed some of this out earlier in discussing solus Christus. God glorifies Himself in the redemption and forgiveness of sinners through Christ (Ephesians 1:6-8) and conforming them into Christ’s image so that they bear the fruits of righteousness (Philippians 1:6,11). His promise to those that believe in Christ is that we will be with Him in heaven where His glory will be displayed in ways Isaiah 6 and Revelation 4 only briefly describe. That future is our hope of the glory of God (2 Corinthians 3:18; Romans 5:2).
That is a very cursory view of some of the various ways in which the Scriptures tell us that the glory of God is displayed. More to our interest this morning are the Scriptures which give instruction to those who have faith in God in ways in which they can glorify Him with their lives. It is that aspect of soli deo gloria that changed the way in which the reformers viewed the world and therefore sought to live.
Living for the Glory of God Alone
Let me state it again that God created everything for His own glory and that all glory belongs to Him. Paul concludes his presentation in Romans 9-11 about God’s choosing of Israel and His faithfulness to His promises to that nation with these exclamations in
Romans 11:33-36, 33 “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! 34 For who has known the mind of the lord, or who became his counselor? 35 or who has first given to him that it might be paid back to him again? 36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.” Notice especially verse 36 as the reason that everything is for the glory of God alone for everything is from Him, through Him and to Him. Other passages also emphasize this truth.
Revelation 4:11 reveals that the twenty-four elders fall down before God’s throne casting their crowns before Him saying, “Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created.” Colossians 1:16-17 adds to this, 16 “For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things have been created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” As one of God’s creations, man exists to give glory to God, and according to Romans 9:22-24, God will gain glory from all men either as a vessel of wrath in demonstration of His attributes such as holiness, justice and power, or a vessel of mercy in demonstration of His attributes such as love and grace (Romans 9:23).
God states directly in Isaiah 43:7 that everyone who is called by His name was created for His glory. That was true of the Old Testament saints and it is equally true in this age in the Church (Ephesians 1:4-14; 1 Peter 2:9). The doxology in Ephesians 3:20-21 expresses that purpose saying, 20 “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, 21 to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.” Revelation 1:6 in speaking of the church states that Christ “has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
The reformers recognized these grand truths and sought to apply them. This was especially true in the Swiss Reformation where the theme of God’s glory became a central theological truth that tied other areas of theology together. This broke down the door that had restricted the definition of what was sacred to the doctrines, traditions and rituals of the church since God’s glory is much greater and encompasses everything. The glory of God was to be a motivation for seeking to live in holiness in every aspect of daily life and not just those things tied to the church and its rituals.
Salvation by God’s grace alone through faith alone in the person and work of Christ alone also meant the individual could live out 1 John 1:9 and confess his sins directly to God without a priest and receive forgiveness and be cleansed from all unrighteousness because He is faithful and righteous. The individual could now apply Hebrews 4:16 and draw with confidence to the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need without going through a priest. The developing recognition of the priesthood of the individual believer opened the door to understanding that all the activities of daily life were also to be sacred since the individual believer could go directly to God anytime, anywhere, in any circumstance. There would no longer be a dichotomy between secular and sacred.
2 Peter 3:18 commends all believers to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” This includes the admonitions to personal Christian living such as in 1 Peter 4:7-11 which includes being fervent in love for one another, hospitable, serving one another as God has gifted you by the strength He supplies “so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.” This includes even the most mundane things as pointed out in 1 Corinthians 10:31 “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
This had wide spread ramifications then and it still has wide spread ramifications now. The Reformation sparked an explosive increase in both the arts and sciences as people sought to glorify God through gaining a better understanding of His creation and produce things of beauty that might reflect Him in some small way. The initials SDG or soli deo gloria became part of the signatures of composers, artists and authors such as Bach, Mendelsshon, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Milton, and Bunyan. Even buildings were stamped with it. Academies and colleges were started for the express purpose of glorifying God in every pursuit of life. The command of Psalm 96:3 to “Tell of His glory among the nations” was expanding to be carried out in all aspects of life. Every profession and every trade, skilled or not could now be sacred and a means to glorify God.
The Reformation, not the Renaissance, laid the foundation for Western civilization, and particularly America, in the 17th – 20th Centuries. Sadly, the secularization inherent in the Renaissance has eroded the blessings of the Reformation and brought back a dichotomy between secular and sacred which is the reason for the reinterpretation of our First Amendment from freedom of religion to freedom from religion in the public square. It is the reason for the increasing hostility of government toward Christians who insist that their faith encompasses every aspect of their life. We do not and cannot make for ourselves a distinction between secular and sacred in our business, work, chores, recreation, entertainment, socialization or anything else. We follow Christ everyday of the week. Everything is sacred to us for we are to live for the glory of God. We can expect increasing persecution as we strive to live out soli deo gloria. The wicked are opposed to our seeking to glorify God in all areas of life, and even more hostile to our refusal to celebrate with them what God declares to be immoral. What should our attitude be? The same as the Pilgrims from whom we share a common reformation heritage.
Reformation Heritage of the Pilgrims
The group we refer to as the Pilgrims were part of the religious separatists of England of the late 16th and early 17th Centuries . Though England was Protestant under Elizabeth I )1558-1603( and James 1 )1603-1625(, attendance at Anglican churches was required. The separatist viewed the Church of England as apostate and would not attend and so were subject to persecution. Increasing persecution finally caused this group of separatists in Scrooby, England to flee to Amsterdam, Holland in 1607 and then moved to Leyden, Holland in 1609. They enjoyed greater religious freedom there, but concerns about their children losing their English heritage and the threat of an invasion by Catholic Spain eventually resulted in 50 of their number sailing for America on the Mayflower with 52 other passengers. They arrived at Cape Cod on November 9, 1620. The Mayflower Compact was drawn up and signed on November 11 to define the government of their new settlement. They did not begin settlement at Plymouth Rock until December 26.
By creed, the Pilgrims were reformed and would have held to the distinctions of the five solas. They carried with them the Geneva Bible produced in 1560 by English exiles in Switzerland and heavily influenced by John Calvin. The importance of living for the glory of God is seen in William Bradford’s History of Plymouth Plantation. Here are a few specific examples beginning with this statement in Bradford’s introduction in 1646 referring to those that had come to Plymouth in its early years )all quotations with original spellings(. “You have not only had a seede time, but many of you have seene ye joyefull harvest; shoald you not then rejoyse, yea, and againe rejoyce, and say Hallelu-iah, salvation, and glorie, and honour, and power, be to ye Lord our God; for true and righteous are his judgments. Rev. 19.1,2.”
The Mayflower Compact begins, “In ye name of God, Amen.” then includes this statement about their purpose, “. . . haveing undertaken, for ye glorie of God, and advancemente of ye Christian faith, and honour of our king and countrie, a voyage to plant ye first colonie in ye Northerne parts of Virginia . . .”
Their correspondence often included something about God’s glory. Robart Cushman’s 1622 letter concludes, “and ye Lord God of sea and land bring us comfortably togeather againe, if it may stand with his glorie.” A 1623 letter on the Anne, carried this prayer for them, “And so ye Lord be with you all & send us joyfull news from you, and inable us with one shoulder so to accomplish & perfecte this worke, as much glorie may come to Him yt confoundeth ye mighty by the weak, and maketh small thinges great. To whose greatnes, be all glolie for ever & ever.”
A 1623 letter by James Sherley comments on the character and motivation of men of Plymouth Plantation, “Yet againe we have many other, and I hope ye greatest parte, very honest Christian men, which I am perswaded their ends and intents are wholy for ye glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, in ye propagation of his gospell, and hope of gaining those poore salvages to ye knowledg of God.”
John Robinson concludes his December 20, 1623 letter to William Brewster, “Your God & ours, and ye God of all his, bring us together if it be his will, and keep us in the mean while, and allways to his glory, and make us servis able to his majestie, and faithfull to the end. Amen.”
In 1628 Bradford comments on the possible reason for some of the disasters that had come upon them saying, “I conceive ye only reason to be, we, or many of us, aimed at other ends then Gods glorie; but now I hope yt cause is taken away;”
The thankfulness of the Pilgrims to God is best known from their setting aside times of thanksgiving for their harvest such as the three days of feasting held in 1621, but their thankfulness shows up continually in their steadfast spirit and worship of God in the midst of the worst of their trials. A few of Bradford’s summary statements included in his eulogy for his friend, William Brewster, will serve to give you sense of this. He writes, I cannot but here take occasion, not only to mention, but greatly to admire ye marvelous providence of God, that notwithstanding ye many changes and hardships that these people wente throwgh, and ye many enemies they had and difficulties they mette with all, that so many of them should live to very olde age! Then after recounting some of the many hardships they had borne, Bradford writes, “What was it then that upheld them? It was Gods vissitation that preserved their spirits.” He quotes Job 10:12; 1 Corinthians 4:9 and 6:9 then adds, “God, it seems, would have all men to behold and observe such mercies and works of his providence as these are towards his people, that they in like cases might be encouraged to depend upon God in their trials, & also blese his name when they see his goodnes towards others.”
It is my contention that their living for the glory of God and being thankful in all circumstances are directly related. Soli deo gloria gives both the proper motivation and understanding for living a godly life and able to respond in worship and thanksgiving even when life gets hard and tragedy is heaped upon tragedy as they were for the Pilgrims, especially in their early years. The same can be and should be true for you. Set your mind to live for the glory of God in every aspect of life, and you will soon find new motivation and understanding that will enable you to consistently live in righteousness filled with peace and joy.
The doctrines referred to in the five solas freed man from the selfish burden of trying to earn his salvation. A secure salvation enabled him to pursue and serve God out of love for Him and the pleasure of doing so. It also enabled him to be considerate of others with the same motivations. Soli deo gloria strikes down the dichotomy between secular and sacred and unifies the proper motivation for everything that is done is life. It also gives meaning to every circumstance so that even tragic situations can be endured with a peace that passes all understanding for Romans 8:28 becomes reality instead of a Christian cliche. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” The purpose is the glory of God. The truth of Soli deo gloria, the glory of God alone, enabled our Pilgrim forefathers to endure and be thankful even in the most trying of circumstances. It enables us to do the same.
I encourage you to spend some time this afternoon in considering your life in terms of the glory of God, and then write down some of the things for which you are thankful. It will prepare you for a proper celebration of Thanksgiving this coming Thursday. We will give you an opportunity this evening to share your praise of God.
Please stand as I conclude by reading the doxology in Romans 16:25-27. 25 Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which has been kept secret for long ages past, 26 but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; 27 to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, be the glory forever. Amen.
Sermon Notes – 11/19/2017
Soli Deo Gloria – God’s Glory Alone and Thankfulness
The five solas are brief statements that encompass crucial Biblical ______recovered during the Reformation
Sola Scriptura – The Scriptures are the final ________and best expression of God’s glory this side of heaven
Any competing authority obscures God’s _________and will be opposed by Him
Sola Gratia – sinners have ______________of their own and can make no claim on God
Any idea that man can have merit before God by his own efforts is a ______and a strike against God’s glory
Sola Fide – ____________comes as a gift by God’s grace through faith alone in the Lord Jesus Christ alone
Justification by faith alone glorifies God as the just and justifier, _________it slanders Him as an unjust liar
Solus Christus – Jesus Christ alone is the source and means of ____________.
His life and atonement glorified God – any other source of means of salvation ____________Him and God
Soli Deo Gloria – the culmination and purpose of the solas and the Biblical ____________of everything
The Reformers rejected the _________between secular & sacred as anti-Biblical and contrary to God’s glory
The Glory of God Displayed
dWbK2 / kabod & dovxa / doxa – weighty in the sense of noteworthy, impressive, honorable, ______, splendid
God is glorious from ______________past by His very nature – John 17:5
God’s glory is “the ____________of the worth and beauty and greatness of God Himself” )John Piper(
The Genesis account of _________proclaims God’s glory – disbelief of it slanders God as a liar and deceiver
Psalm 8 & 19 – the immensity and power of the ____________ declare God’s glory
Isaiah 6:3 – the whole _______is full of His glory: weather & geologic phenomena, the Sea and all creatures
His glory is displayed in His care for His creatures, especially the nation of _______and providing salvation
The focus of the NT is God’s glory displayed in Jesus Christ and His work of ______________
God glorifies Himself in the salvation of __________ and conforming them to Christ’s image
Living for the Glory of God Alone
God will be glorified by all men as either a vessel of ___________or a vessel of mercy )Romans 9:22-24(
Soli Deo Gloria unified all aspects of life as __________ and gave motivation for living in holiness
The solas freed man from striving to earn salvation and gave _____access to God making everything sacred
The Reformation sparked an explosive increase in the arts and ______________
The _____________, not the Renaissance, laid the foundation for 17th – 20th Century Western Civilization
A resurgence of separating sacred and secular is resulting in _____of religious freedom & rising persecution
For the true Christian, every aspect of life is ________- business, work, chores, recreation, socialization, etc.
Reformation Heritage of the Pilgrims
The Pilgrims were English separatists of the early 17th Century and reformed in ____________and practice
The importance of living for the _____of God is seen in William Bradford’s History of Plymouth Plantation
The Mayflower Compact – their _________: “for ye glorie of God, and advancemente of ye Christian faith,”
Pilgrim character & ______: “wholy for ye glory of our Lord Jesus Christ, in ye propagation of his gospell”
Living for God’s glory motivated them & enabled them to be _________in every circumstance, good or bad
Soli Deo Gloria gives ____________to everything in life by uniting it all with same motivation and purpose
Romans 8:28 becomes ___________ instead of a Christian cliche – enabling us to be like the Pilgrims
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture)s( to your parents at lunch. Older Children – Do one or more of the following: 1( Count how many times “glory” is referenced. 2( Discuss with your parents the meaning of living for the glory of God alone.
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. Give a short explanation of each of the solas and their relationship with God’s glory. What is the meaning of “glory”? How is God intrinsically glorious? In what ways do the heavens declare the glory of God? How is God glorified by weather phenomena? Geologic features and events? The Sea? Animals? How is God glorified by His special relationship with the nation of Israel? The Church? How is God’s glory displayed in Jesus Christ? What is the meaning of Romans 11:36; Revelation 4:11 and Colossians 1:16-17? How will God glorify Himself in unrepentant sinners? What was the importance of soli deo gloria in the Swiss Reformation? How does soli deo gloria break down the division between the secular and the sacred? How do the rest of the solas contribute to that break down? What do 1 Peter 4:7-11; 2 Peter 3:18 and 1 Corinthians 10:31 teach about the manner and purpose of Christian life? What effect did the Reformation have on the arts and sciences of Western Europe? Why did it have that effect? What negative effects have arisen due to the rising dichotomy between secular and sacred in the 20th & 21st Centuries in Western Civilization? Who were the Pilgrims? What did the believe? According to the Mayflower Compact, what was their purpose in establishing a colony? In what ways did seeking the glory of God characterize their lives? Why were they a thankful people? What enabled them to worship God and be thankful even in the most difficult of circumstances? How can soli deo gloria enable you to live in a similar manner as the Pilgrims? Prepare for Thanksgiving by contemplating living for God’s glory alone and then reflect on reasons you have to be thankful.
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