R.T. Kendall: Do You Live for Man’s Praise or God’s?

by | Feb 22, 2019 | Bible Study

The word “glory” embraces both the tangible and the intangible. The tangible means something that can be visible and experienced; it became known as the shekinah, a word that appeared first in rabbinic literature. The intangible refers largely to the source of one’s approval, praise and honor. In a word, do you want the praise that comes from men or the praise that comes from God?

We should examine two words in the ancient languages that translate “glory.”

Kabod

In the Old Testament, it is kabod. It is a word that means heaviness—as in weight or stature. It is like when people throw their weight around. That is partly the idea of kabod. However, this can be applied to times when the Holy Spirit comes down in power—the result being a holy heaviness in the atmosphere.

Mrs. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, who personally experienced the Welsh Revival (1904–1905), used to talk to me about it. Her father put her on a train at Paddington Station, London, after taking her out of school so she could witness the Welsh Revival.

“She can always go to school,” her father said, “but she may never see revival again.”

She spoke of an atmosphere in which she would at times slightly gasp for breath, even though she was a child of 6 at the time of the revival. Others, experiencing the phenomenon of the Toronto Blessing, have testified to a weight on them so that they could not move. A number of people have recounted to me very similar experiences.

Having fallen to the floor under the power of the Spirit, they said, “I told this person to get off my back so I could get up, but there was no one there.”

Doxa

The Greek word doxa translates “glory.” It is the word from which “doxology” comes. It means praise or honor. It comes from a root word that means “opinion.” By this rendering, the glory of God is His opinion or will. This fits with Paul’s words:

“In Him also we have received an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His own will, that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, should live for the praise of His glory” (Eph. 1:11–12).

Taking our cue from doxa, the glory of God is the dignity of His will. Those who choose the glory or praise from people forfeit the honor or praise that would have come from God—which is precisely what the Pharisees of Jesus’ day did. They loved the praise that came from people more than the praise that comes from God (John 5:44; 12:43). The consequence of this was that they missed their Messiah.

Kabod and doxa combined means the way God chooses to manifest Himself. He is sovereign; we cannot twist His arm to make Him do what we may wish for.

The Word Made Flesh

God manifested Himself in the flesh—Jesus Christ of Nazareth. He is kabod and doxa combined. “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory,” said John, “the glory as the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14). Ever since, God has manifested His glory in countless ways.

This article is adapted from More of God: Seek the Benefactor, Not Just the Benefits (Charisma House 2019) by R.T. Kendall. Kendall was the pastor of Westminster Chapel in London, England, for twenty-five years. Born in Ashland, Kentucky, he was educated at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (M.Div.) and Oxford University (D.Phil.). Kendall is the author of many books, including Total Forgiveness, Holy Fire, It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over, Prepare Your Heart for the Midnight Cry and Whatever Happened to the Gospel?

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Kingdom Economics: How Godly Traditions Convey Kingdom Truths

Kingdom Economics: How Godly Traditions Convey Kingdom Truths

Read Time: 3 Minutes 53 Seconds WalletHub estimates 97% of Americans celebrate Thanksgiving and were expected to spend $835 million on Thanksgiving turkeys for last week’s holiday. More than 50 million people were expected to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on...

The Hidden Antisemitism of Misappropriation of Scripture

The Hidden Antisemitism of Misappropriation of Scripture

Read Time: 4 Minutes 49 Seconds I know that what I am writing in my blog today will cause some people discomfort. Others will become angry and still others will choose to stop reading my blogs and articles. Yet, knowing that there is a danger of the above happening,...

Charisma Highlights: Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Charisma Highlights: Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Following are snippets of the top stories posted on charismamag.com over the past week. We encourage you to visit the links to read the stories in full. Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven? Is it possible that behind the pearly gates of heaven there are...

10 Ways to Practice Gratitude With Your family This Thanksgiving

10 Ways to Practice Gratitude With Your family This Thanksgiving

This month we are entering a season which, in the United States, has been devoted to gratitude and thanksgiving for 400 years! While the Thanksgiving holiday has had a long and varied history within the United States, the practice of devoting sacrificial offerings,...

Don’t Let Ungratefulness Turn You Into a Spoiled American

Don’t Let Ungratefulness Turn You Into a Spoiled American

My frequent trips to developing nations always help me adjust my attitude. Just when I start to feel spoiled and entitled, I meet people from places like Congo, India and Honduras—and I realize just how blessed I am. This happened to me again last week during a trip...

The Power of Being Thankful

The Power of Being Thankful

One of the best ways to show God we love Him is to be thankful. When we express our deep gratitude to Him, it actually invites His presence onto our lives. Being thankful also neutralizes the enemy and brings victory into our situations no matter what the outcome....

Get Off Your Pew!

Get Off Your Pew!

As God’s clock inches closer to the final hour before His return, many people find themselves filled with angst, anxiety and despair. People are not sleeping well, many have fallen into depression and are feeling hopeless. These are the very days that we have been...

RECENT ARTICLES

ORU’s President Dr. Billy Wilson Shares Strategy to Reach 8 Billion for Christ

Read Time: 2 minutes 26 seconds The world population just surpassed 8 billion people and a group of emboldened followers of Jesus have set on a mission to reach the world with the message of...
The Great Commission Can Set Us Free from Responsibility

The Great Commission Can Set Us Free from Responsibility

Read Time: 4 Minutes 28 Seconds While all of the stories we read in the Torah are meaningful, sometimes the events we read about can seem to hold more relevance, especially for those of us who are followers of Yeshua (Jesus) as Messiah. One such event is the calling...

The Church’s Role in Preserving Freedom of Speech in America

The Church’s Role in Preserving Freedom of Speech in America

Read Time: 3 Minutes 17 Seconds The controversy surrounding Kyrie Irving and his post of a tweet that claims the Jews in Israel are not the real Jews—that Black Africans are the real Jews—raises serious questions about free speech in America and has ramifications for...

Count Your Blessings, For God Indeed is Good

Count Your Blessings, For God Indeed is Good

Read Time: 4 Minutes 42 Seconds Thanksgiving Day is just a few days away for U.S. Americans. It is a favorite holiday—perhaps only exceeded by Christmas—to gather with family and friends to watch parades, play (American) “football” and eat delicious food—often from...

Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

Is Serial Killer Jeffrey Dahmer in Heaven?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFbfS03JkKY&t=1s Read Time: 3 Minutes, 10 Seconds Is it possible that behind the pearly gates of heaven there are murderers, pedophiles and cannibals walking along the streets of gold? We are taught in the book of Romans, "That if...

Pin It on Pinterest