Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.
“Glory to God”
“Glory Be to God”
“To God Be the Glory!"
We have heard these expressions all the time especially when things are going right such as when we get a job promotion; when we get money from an unexpected source; when gas prices go down, when our children behave or when we get a good report from the doctor. We automatically say, “Glory to God.” Without thinking the words just come out of our mouth, "To God be the glory for the great things He has done.”
Do people really know what they are saying when they exclaim, “Glory to God!” Perhaps you say those words because you have heard someone else say them. Perhaps you say those words because you feel God wants to hear them. Perhaps you say them because you don’t know what else to say or perhaps they sound good at the time.
The Word 'Glory'
The word “Glory” is recorded in the Bible about 350 times and there are at least 50 references in the Psalms alone. No matter why you say these expressions, know that “glory” is a quality that should be given only to God. It is all right and even remarkable to say one of these expressions, but let them be said for one or more of these reasons.
- “Glory to God” is said when we give God the honor, the praise and the worship He deserves. God’s glory is an expression of His holiness. When we say “Glory to God” we are acknowledging that God is real. We are agreeing with the host of heaven that God is holy.
- We say “Glory to God” when we acknowledge the beauty, the majesty, and the splendor of God’s attributes and characteristics. According to Psalm 19:1, even the heavens declare the glory of God.
- We say “Glory to God” when we experience God’s presence and power. That’s the type of glory Moses asked God to show him. That's the type of glory Ezekiel experienced and he called it a wheel within a wheel.
Examples of God's Glory
In the wilderness, the Israelites were guided by God’s glory in the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night. On another occasion in Exodus 33, when Moses had visited with God, God’s glory was so powerful on Moses' face that he had to wear a veil to keep the Israelites from falling under the power of God’s glory.
In yet another instance, Moses told God, “Show me your glory.” No one has ever seen all of God’s glory and lived. It is just too awesome. It is too great for our eyes to handle the light that radiates from God. All of God’s glory is greater than we would be able to stand.
When we think about God and His creation, we should say, “Glory to God.” When we think of God’s work of redemption through Jesus on the cross, we should exclaim, “Glory to God.” When we think of the day Jesus will return we can say, “Glory to God.”
How do we give glory to God?
- We give glory to God when we include Him in everything we do. We should make no decision without hearing from God.
- We give glory to God when we follow His commands; when we are obedient to His word. Partial obedience is disobedience and delayed obedience is disobedience.
- We give glory to God when we accept His guidance at face value without negotiating or compromising.
- We give glory to God through our adoration, praise, honor, and worship.
- We give glory to God by accepting His Son Jesus Christ. John 14:6 says, “No one comes unto the Father except through His Son.”
When Jesus was born, the angels exclaimed, “Glory to God in the Highest.” When Jesus was on Mount Transfiguration, His glory was revealed so much that Peter wanted to build three tabernacles there.
It doesn't matter if we say, "Glory to God," "Glory be to God," or "To God be the glory" as long as we know why we say it.