Glory for Jesus and for me
I’m still thinking about verse 12 …
I learned a lot from the story about Abraham who became a broom manager. There are two kinds of people with different views of people who suffer. One kind, like the biltong chewer, see people like Abraham as a burden that has to disappear as quickly as possible before they make him go quicker with a fist in the right place.
I don’t think that is how Jesus would’ve treated Abraham.
The other kind is led by people like Hendrik. Hendrik saw Abraham with the eyes of his heart. Then you see differently. Then you see the need. Then you hurt when others have nothing. But even more than that, then you have no choice but to make a plan and do something.
That is exactly what Jesus would’ve done.
Hendrik and Abraham’s story touched our readers. We want to act like that too. We want to help others too. We want to make a real difference. We are driven and motivated to find places where need exists and we want to make plans to alleviate that need. How different the world would look if each reader of the story does one small thing to alleviate the need of others!
But there is more to this than Abraham, Hendrik and our readers, because you see, the net effect of this life-changing story is that Jesus is glorified. In a way, Jesus becomes tangible through what we do. Jesus gets hands and feet through the way that Hendrik acts. Jesus becomes visible to the world, because Hendrik is prepared to make a difference and to be used by Jesus.
Now verse 12 has real meaning: 12If your life honors the name of Jesus, he will honor you. Grace is behind and through all of this, our God giving himself freely, the Master, Jesus Christ, giving himself freely.
The English Standard Version makes it even clearer: 12 … so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus is glorified through Hendrik’s actions. Jesus receives acclaim, honour and glory through the good works that are done. In a way, we can say that our hands and feet, our works, become a mirror that reflects Jesus. People in need are often astounded by the kindness shown to them. Then they cannot keep quiet about the goodness and favour, because they are overcome by giving thanks and honour to the Source of the goodness that they received via the children of God.
That is how Jesus is glorified through our actions. Others can see Jesus in our works. Sometimes this is the first kind of contact that people may have with Jesus and they cannot remain the same when they’ve come into contact with the heavenly Son of God.
And us? In the process we are honoured by Jesus (not people) because we are simply doing our work. No, we don’t do it for the glory. We do good to others out of gratitude for being saved by Christ. Jesus is grateful that we eventually understand this. He is grateful that our faith in Him becomes visible through our good deeds. And we receive glory from Him.
Wow, I feel so small when I think that the Almighty Jesus Christ honours me. That is grace alone!
To think about
Is Jesus glorified through your deeds?
Do you receive glory from Jesus as a result of your deeds?
Are you available and useful to Jesus?
Jesus, it is so strange to think that You want to honour me. But it sounds wonderful. I want to honour You through my deeds. I want to make a difference where I live and work. Open my eyes so that I can see the need. Amen.