The Appearing of Grace and Glory

Visions of Glory  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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An Epiphany

To shine upon, make clear - to appear
Epiphany - the church holiday commemorating the Wise Men coming to the place where Jesus was - Matthew 2
Paul uses the word twice in this passage - the appearing of the Grace of God, and the appearing of his Glory - These epiphanies, the light that shines upon us, shows us the way to live

The Appearing of Grace

What is Grace?

Grace is the gift of God
The free, unexpected, unmerited, unlooked for gift
Grace is the good pleasure of God that inclines Him to bestow benefits on the undeserving.
A. W. Tozer
God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense
What are those rices: the love, forgiveness, redemption, justification, adoption, sanctification, given freely from God

Why we need grace

We are sinners, children of wrath, deserving God’s judgment.
Our works, best efforts fall short
The chasm between us and God was so great, we needed someone to come and bridge the divide
Were it not for the grace of God there would be no such thing as a Christian.
David Martyn Lloyd-Jones

How did Grace Appear

All manner of grace was demonstrated from the fall - but in the fullness of time, God gave his Son
Christ came to show God’s love
Titus 3:4–7 (ESV)
But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
He was born to be like us, to take our burden, to die in our place
He gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession
He was raised from the dead for our salvation, and ascended to the right hand, where He rules over, intercedes for, and provides gifts to His Church
He has fully, completely, and perfectly revealed the grace of God for us - you need look to no one else to know grace

The Appearing of Glory

What do we mean by glory

Honor and praise for all that God is -
I would say that His glory is the shining forth of His holiness. His holiness is His intrinsic worth—an utterly unique excellence. His glory is the manifest display of this worth in beauty. His glory is His holiness on display.
John Piper
The full revelation of God’s qualities
The glory of God in the person of Jesus Christ
Hebrews 1:3 (ESV)
He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power…
Connected to Christ’s death and resurrection
Lazarus from the tomb - to show the glory of God - John 11:40 “Jesus said to her, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?””
Jesus prayed in John 12:28 “Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.”” Then he immediately spoke of being lifted up, his crucifixion. The death and resurrection of Christ, God’s saving grace on full display, was to His glory and honor
The appearing of Jesus Christ, who was raised from the dead, and will come again in glory to bring the completion of our salvation
Grace and glory are intertwined
Grace is glory begun, and glory is grace perfected.
Jonathan Edwards

How will glory appear

In the very person of Christ - the appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ
Christ will come again, to raise those who have died in Him, and to bring judgment, to vindicate all who believe, to bring all things before the throne of God
This is a terror to those in sin - for all have fallen short of this glory. But for those who have seen his grace, His coming again is their blessed hope -
There is no fear of judgment, but only the promise of salvation and victory in Christ

The Dash in Between

On tombstones, Date of Birth, Date of Death - life is reflected in the dash in between
In History there are 2 epiphanies - 2 appearances -
The appearing of grace in the birth, life, death, and resurrection of Christ; and the coming appearing of glory at His return.

All of Christianity is Reflected in the Dash In-Between

How we live in between the appearing of grace and the coming of glory has eternal consequences.
His grace has come to show us how to live as we await our blessed hope of glory
Grace that does not transform you from the inside out is cheap and useless grace
His grace was given to teach us to
Renounce ungodliness and worldly passions
Ungodliness - living with indifference to God, little thought of him, or care for his ways
Worldly passions - chasing after all that this world has to offer, rather than storing up for yourselves treasures in heaven
The grace and glory of Christ are better than these. When we see what Christ has done for us, the love he’s shown, the life he’s given, the hope he’s secured; when we consider the coming glory of His return; standing in the light of his appearing we see him as infinitely better than anything this world has to offer.
Living self-controlled, upright, and godly lives
Self controlled - waiting, patience, satisfied
Upright - righteous, good, His life lived in us
Godly - A life directed to God

All of this is because of God’s appearance of Grace

By his grace we are his people, his possession, and we have been purified from lawlessness, set apart for good works His grace makes us what we are to be
Know His grace - trust in the grace of God for your salvation
Wait for his glory - living in hope, reflected in godliness
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