Devotional by Jared Grenfell:
Anyone who has attended church in the past few years has probably heard the popular song, “What a Beautiful Name”. We all know the chorus, the bridge buildup, and the infamous opening line of Verse 2 that has caused much theological debate. As a worship leader, I cannot count how many times I have played and sang it. But in preparing for this Sunday’s lineup, a particular line, which I had previously glossed over, stuck out to me:
“Your hidden Glory in creation, now revealed in You, our Christ”
I love the entire first verse, as it directly references John 1 and sets the stage for the rest of the song. It reminds us of the centrality of Jesus – that is, He is the main idea all throughout God’s story. This line ties it all together in conclusion by contrasting the old and new covenants.
After delivering the law to Moses at Sinai, God directs him to set up the tabernacle. Once that was completed, the Glory of the LORD “filled the tabernacle” (Exodus 40:34). This was God’s way of revealing Himself to His people at the time. Early on, we can see His desire to be more than a voice in the sky – He wanted to dwell among us. And here we can see Jesus, the Word, long before He appears in the flesh.
Fast forwarding to John 17:26, we hear Jesus say in a prayer,
“I made Your name known to them and will make it known, so the love You have loved Me with may be in them and I may be in them.”
Though this is a different covenant than was given to Moses, the purpose of it remains the same: a promise that God will be among His people. Before, He dwelt in a tabernacle, which lived in the most holy place only accessible by the high priest (Hebrews 9:2-7). Now, because of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection, we have the most perfect High Priest and His Spirit dwells in us!
The story does not stop there. With the Spirit of Jesus now alive in us, He has tasked us with a mission – the most important mission of all our lives – to make His name known across the ends of the earth. His glory is not to be hidden, but to be seen. To be revealed. Colossians 1:24-29 sums this up:
“Now I rejoice in my sufferings for you, and I am completing in my flesh what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for His body, that is, the Church. I have become its servant, according to God’s administration that was given to me for you, to make God’s message fully known, the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to His saints. God wanted to make known among the Gentiles the glorious wealth of His mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
Jesus did not just send His Spirit down on us to make us feel good. He entrusted us with the ministry He began. We are commanded to make God’s message fully known, a responsibility we shouldn’t bear lightly. The Creator of the universe took on human flesh and bore the full penalty for all our mistakes so that we could be brought back to life with Him. This is an incredible story and, more importantly, a true story! Are we going to go about our lives keeping it hidden, or will we allow the Spirit in us to radiate in a way those around us may see? This is not a philosophical question, but a matter of asking ourselves how willing we are to follow Jesus’ final command before He ascended to Heaven.
For most, this is an overwhelming and often frightening thing to dwell on. I, for one, always feel strong conviction when confronted with the issue of sharing the Gospel. It is often challenging to figure out where to begin, especially in a world that has become increasingly averse to authentic, biblical Christianity. While I do not have all the answers on this subject, I know that God has equipped us to do what He says. He has sent us a Helper, the Spirit that lives in our hearts.
Here are a few questions I encourage you to reflect on: Is sharing the love of Christ a central priority in your daily life? How has God gifted you to serve others and to help build up His kingdom? Do your speech and actions more often radiate the image of Christ, or do they suppress it?
Whilst preparing for services early on Sunday morning, LIFE Worship has been sharing personal testimonies and devotionals centered around a song we are singing that morning. This has become a vital practice for us to center our minds on the glory of God and the teachings of Christ as we prepare to worship alongside His congregation of believers, and we are blessed to share those devotionals with you again on this blog. Check in with us every week and follow us on social media to stay updated with the latest devotionals!