Glory into Shame

I read a devotional in Spurgeon the other day, which may tie together a number of, seemingly, random posts we’ve made recently.  John wrote about the shared glory of Jesus and His Father, then I detoured to a letter by Alistair Begg about not letting go of the cross and all Jesus did for us.  Then, I couldn’t let the heroic actions and honor of a Navy SEAL go unnoticed or unannounced.  But there’s a thread that ties these together, I believe.

Spurgeon quotes Psalm 4:2,  “O ye sons of men, how long will ye turn my glory into shame?” 

He continues:

An instructive writer has made a sad list of the honours that the blinded people of Israel awarded to their long-expected King. First, they gave Him a procession of honour, in which Roman legionaries, Jewish priests, men and women took part, He Himself bearing His cross.  This is the triumph that the world awards to Him who comes to overthrow man’s direst foes…”

“..The cross was, in fact, the full expression of the world’s feeling toward Him, ‘There,’ they seemed to say, ‘Son of God, this is the manner in which God Himself should be treated, could we reach Him.'”

And so He is. 

Ah yes, look how the God Who Saves is treated–His name has become a curse word, His presence omitted out of history and education, His creational power diminished by a few triumphant one-celled blobs, His followers persecuted worldwide, His life taught as a myth, His purpose defined as a weak martyr (at best), His death, deserving, His resurrected life, a fable.  His glory, shame.

Turning glory to shame knows no bounds.  The day after MA2 (SEAL) Monsoor received the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions, his cause was questioned, his fellow servicemember’s accomplishments diminished, his leaders berated, and his general paraded before an inquisition of ungrateful “public servants” who awoke in the comforts of their safe, American homes. “This is the triumph” that our country awards those who seek to overthrow a dire foe! 

Everything within me wants to shout, “Unfair, unjust!”  Whether it’s the brutal treatment of Christians around the world, elevating murderers, liars, or terrorists, derriding belief in a living, Creator God, or viewing evil as good and good as evil.  My voice cries out with the Psalmist and with those in Revelation 6:10, “How long?!” 

Then I recall something else Spurgeon said:

Patience, then believer, eternity will right the wrongs of time.”

And I remember other Psalmist cries:

When I pondered to understand this; it was troublesome in my sight, until I came into the sanctuary of God; then I perceived their end.” Psalm 73:16,17  NASB

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Psalm 27:14 NASB

And in the New Testament:

but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong.” I Cor. 1:27 NASB

So, we (I) need to always keep the “end of the story” in mind.  God will turn the world’s glory into shame.

And His shame into glory.

 Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honour and glory and blessing!” 

  Revelation 5:12 NASB

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