Demonstrating the Glory
Encountering Jesus Helps Us Understand His Presence
Why do we need to learn about God’s presence?
o Experiencing Gods presence on earth is training for our days as glorified sons of God. Everything in heaven is like the sense of His presence on earth – just much, much, much greater.
o The difference between God’s presence in heaven versus God’s presence on earth is the level of intensity.
o His presence in heaven is unhindered. There is no flesh in heaven to hinder His presence.
1 Corinthians 15:50 (ESV)
50 I tell you this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable.
o There is no enemy in heaven
o There are no devils, demons, and evil spirits there.
o There is no unbelief in heaven.
o There is no unforgiveness in heaven.
o No lack of unity there
o No irreverence in heaven
o These are just some of the things that hinder His manifest presence. If you did not have these things on earth – His presence would always be manifest.
Unbelief Hinders His Glory
God has a ‘Higher’ Plan
Numbers 13:1–3 (ESV)
1 The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the people of Israel. From each tribe of their fathers you shall send a man, every one a chief among them.” 3 So Moses sent them from the wilderness of Paran, according to the command of the LORD, all of them men who were heads of the people of Israel.
o The Lord instructed Israel to send men to spy out the land and to bring back a report of the land.
o They were supposed to look at the land through the eyes of their awesome overcoming God. They were supposed to see the enemies in the land through God’s Word to them which promised the land to all Israel and their descendants.
Numbers 13:27–33 (ESV)
27 And they told him, “We came to the land to which you sent us. It flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. 28 However, the people who dwell in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. And besides, we saw the descendants of Anak there. 29 The Amalekites dwell in the land of the Negeb. The Hittites, the Jebusites, and the Amorites dwell in the hill country. And the Canaanites dwell by the sea, and along the Jordan.” 30 But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.” 31 Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are.” 32 So they brought to the people of Israel a bad report of the land that they had spied out, saying, “The land, through which we have gone to spy it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people that we saw in it are of great height. 33 And there we saw the Nephilim (the sons of Anak, who come from the Nephilim), and we seemed to ourselves like grasshoppers, and so we seemed to them.”
o Instead of coming back with a report showing the greatness of their God, the spies came back with a report showing the greatness of the enemy in the land. The problem with the report was that it contradicted the report that God gave of the land. God said, you are well able to overcome it. They said, ‘No, we cannot’.
o The Lord was not happy with their failure to believe Him.
Numbers 14:11–12 (ESV)
11 And the LORD said to Moses, “How long will this people despise me? And how long will they not believe in me, in spite of all the signs that I have done among them? 12 I will strike them with the pestilence and disinherit them, and I will make of you a nation greater and mightier than they.”
o Moses intercedes for the people and God accepts His intercession with a condition.
Numbers 14:20–24 (ESV)
20 Then the LORD said, “I have pardoned, according to your word. 21 But truly, as I live, and as all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD, 22 none of the men who have seen my glory and my signs that I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and yet have put me to the test these ten times and have not obeyed my voice, 23 shall see the land that I swore to give to their fathers. And none of those who despised me shall see it. 24 But my servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit and has followed me fully, I will bring into the land into which he went, and his descendants shall possess it.
o In meeting out the sentence for the unbelief of the people, the Lord gives an end-time prediction. The question ‘why?’ though must be asked at this point. Doesn’t this statement concerning the glory seem out of place? What is it doing here?
o This situation seems to be rather simple. God asks the children of Israel to do something. They refuse. God is upset. Moses prays and intercedes. God forgives with consequences.
o Why mention the glory here? Why does God make this statement here seemingly out of nowhere?
o It reveals God’s intent in having the children of Israel conquer the land in the first place.
o Why did He want the children of Israel to conquer Canaan? He hints at with this prophetic word – He wants His glory manifested in all the earth.
o So you see God did not just want Israel to conquer the land because they needed a place to stay. Having a home is necessary but in the overall plan of God, that was too low a thought.
o God’s higher thought for Israel was for them to be a witness to the nations, for them to be demonstrators of the glory.
o How were they going to witness to the nations – with two tables of stone? If they did that, the nations that they were would just pull out there tables of stone! But if they demonstrated God’s presence in a tangible way.
o Do you remember Carmel? Do you remember Elijah’s challenge to the prophets of Baal? Let the God that answers by fire – let him be God!
o That is what Israel was supposed to do among the nations – be a conduit for the glory of God. They were supposed to demonstrate that. Instead, they hindered the glory with their unbelief and so what God is saying to Israel in Numbers 14 is simply this – you may have delayed the plan with your unbelief (yes you have delayed it – you have delayed it 40 years) but as sure as I live – all the earth is going to be full of the glory!
Jesus Encounters Lazarus
Demonstarting the Glory in the ministry of Jesus
o There are 19 individual cases of healing in the gospels. Jesus encountered 19 individual cases and healed them. Let us look at Lazarus.
John 11:11–15 (ESV)
11 After saying these things, he said to them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep, but I go to awaken him.” 12 The disciples said to him, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.” 13 Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he meant taking rest in sleep. 14 Then Jesus told them plainly, “Lazarus has died, 15 and for your sake I am glad that I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”
John 11:17,34,38-45 (ESV)
17 Now when Jesus came, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days.
34 And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.”
38 Then Jesus, deeply moved again, came to the tomb. It was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.” Martha, the sister of the dead man, said to him, “Lord, by this time there will be an odor, for he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?” 41 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. 42 I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” 44 The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” 45 Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what he did, believed in him,
o Here it is again, faith in connection with the manifestation of the glory (vs. 15, 40, 42, 45).
o Again we see this higher level of purpose in Jesus encounter with Lazarus.
o Jesus did not heal Lazarus for Lazarus sake. He did not heal Lazarus for Mary and Martha’s sake because they lost their brother and they were sad. He healed them because of verse 45, ‘many of the Jews saw what He did and believed in Him.’
o So, here we come to our generation and our time. At this time, we see a lot of self-help type messages being ministered. People flock to that because the (yes) the need is legitimate. I need healing for my body. I need to prosper in my finances. My home life needs to be restored.
o Nevertheless, in encountering Jesus, I want you to see that your life is not just about your needs. Jesus wants to meet your needs because He loves you. He wants to bless you because He cares for you. However, He also has a higher plan.
o Here is what I am telling you – your life is a Holy Ghost train track and the last stop on the track is ‘all the earth will be full of the glory of God!’
o What is it about the will of God for your life? Why does God want you to go and minister to this group of people? Why does He want you to pastor a church? Why does He put gifts inside of you? Why did He give you the gift of hospitality? Why do you see visions or why does the Word of Knowledge work in you or why do you have an evangelistic flair about you where you want to see people saved? Why do you have a heart to minister to children or why do you have a voice to sing? Why do you have the personality and the gift set that you have?
o Your gifting’s are evidence that your life is not just about you. Your gifts are tied to other people.
o Everything about your life points to the full manifestation of the glory in the earth (Acts 2:17-21).
o That is why it is essential that you do not sit down on your gifting’s – that you give place to every good thing that is in you because that which is within you is part of ‘all the earth will be full of the glory.”
o Can you see this? Can you see that it is not just about your individual needs being met? Do you realize that God’s plan is not just about one individual who receives something from Jesus?
o In the ministry of Jesus, the will of God was not just about one leper that needed to receive healing or one man named Lazarus that needed deliverance from death. It is never about just one person being healed. It is about every person being healed! The Lord did not want just one leper healed. He wants ever leper on the planet healed!!!! It is not just about one of us; it is about all of us!
o With this knowledge in hand, you can now operate on a higher plane of faith for your individual needs. A personal need can now be expressed something like this: ‘Lord I need to be healed because I need to be able to give voice to what you placed in me and I cannot do that if I am sick.’ Or, “Lord I need finances because it costs money to participate in ‘all the earth will be full of the glory.'”
o Watch what happens!!! If you operate on that foundation of faith, you will see a difference in your life in God. Now, your prayer life is no longer about your needs alone; selfishness is eliminated – it is about ‘all the earth will be full of the glory’ and my part in that plan.
The Great Demonstration
The last stop on the train track!
Acts 2:15–21 (ESV)
15 For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel: 17 “ ‘And in the last days it shall be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; 18 even on my male servants and female servants in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy. 19 And I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke; 20 the sun shall be turned to darkness and the moon to blood, before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day. 21 And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’
- Do you see the Great Demonstration?
- God has been after this since the beginning – since the days of Numbers 14 and before that! – 6000 years He has been planning for the last stop on the track!
- Do you see the Glory elements?
- Do you see the end result? – who ever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
- Look at verse 17 – do see manifestations of the Spirit?
Jesus Encounters Two on the Road to Emmaus
Demonstrating a Different Covenant
o Let us tie-up a loose end.
o I do not know if you are like me but I have been in services where the Spirit of God was moving and the man of God told the crowd, ‘I see the glory rolling in – I see the cloud.’ Many times, I would hear that and yearn to see what that man of God was seeing. You want to see the cloud. You want to see demonstrations of God and you have may have had this thought – ‘How come Israel got to see glory so outwardly and we don’t?’
o The answer lies in understanding the different covenants.
o Israel was under the Old Covenant. People under the Old Covenant were dead spiritually. They did not have the life of God in them. They were not born again.
o God had to manifest His glory physically because they were dead spiritually. He had no other way to demonstrate to them. He had no other way to prove His Word to them.
o This account in Luke explains covenant differences better than I can say it.
Luke 24:13–16, 28-31 (ESV)
13 That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, 14 and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. 15 While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him… 28 So they drew near to the village to which they were going. He acted as if he were going farther, 29 but they urged him strongly, saying, “Stay with us, for it is toward evening and the day is now far spent.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it and gave it to them. 31 And their eyes were opened, and they recognized him. And he vanished from their sight.
o Notice in this account that the two disciples traveling on the Road to Emmaus did not recognize Jesus (vs. 16). They continued to walk together so long as this condition existed. But, just as soon as they recognized Jesus, He disappeared from their sight. We must ask the question, why?
o The answer is realized when we understand the differences between the two covenants. In The New Covenant, everything is by faith not by sight. In the Old Covenant, everything was reversed; it was by sight not by faith. In the Old Covenant, they saw physically; in the New Covenant, we see spiritually.
o As soon as the disciples recognized Jesus physically, He disappeared because we are required to walk by faith and not by sight.
o Never think that Israel had a better covenant because they saw physical manifestations of the glory. Our Covenant is vastly superior to theirs, just look at how Israel ended up if you doubt that. The Lord has not given you an inferior covenant but a better one established on better promises (Heb. 8:6).
Your life is a Holy Ghost train track and the last stop on the track is ‘all the earth will be full of the glory of God!’