We are going to stay on this topic of glory for a bit more because it is so essential to life. To understand life we must understand glory, and our pursuit of glory. As we have already said, God is full of glory (glory within), and he shares this glory with us (glory received). Therefore we have a hardwired need of and desire for glory. But selfish sin has caused us to seek glory in the creation of God rather than from the Creator God. From “gods” rather than God, if you will.
When Adam and Eve chose the creation over the Creator, God cursed the earth. He didn’t curse humanity, but he did declare a curse upon both the serpent (evil) and the land.
Genesis 3:14. The Lord God said to the serpent, “Because you have done this, cursed are you above all livestock and above all beasts of the field; on your belly you shall go, and dust you shall eat all the days of your life.
Genesis 3:17. And to Adam he said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife and have eaten of the tree of which I commanded you, ‘You shall not eat of it,’ cursed is the ground because of you; in pain you shall eat of it all the days of your life;
And of course this curse is destroying our lives (or at least the life we think we want).
Because as glory chasers and glory thieves, we run around and around in a cycle of sin and rebellion looking for that thing that will bring us glory. But the curse makes this chase so elusive. Everything good in this life that could grant us the glory we are looking for crumbles. Great relationships, jobs, entertainment, construction projects, farming, food, music, it all eventually ends and returns to dust. But we keep on chasing for anything except God. Because to receive glory from God would mean to worship him. And to worship him now goes against our inner nature- the new sinful nature passed on to us by our grandfather, Adam. Now we are our own god. And so day after day we are trapped in the curse’s cycle.
And of course this same curse is the grace of God.
Because God knows that we will chase and chase and chase glory until we die, never finding it in him and in his life. By cursing his glorious creation, God has made it so that we have a fighting chance at resisting the glory of creation and rather embrace the glory of Christ. In fact, now God can use the cyclical nature of the curse to transform and sanctify us. To move us from knowledge to love. The curse actually creates a cycle towards holiness and love. Towards Christ’s life. The more we chase glory, the more it collapses. The more it collapses, the more we turn to Christ and his love. We learn to live and love like Christ through the curse.
And remember, God didn’t just give us a fighting chance at his true glory by cursing the creation. He also cursed the serpent, evil itself. It will lose. In fact it already has. By the blood of Jesus we can now have the hope of eternal glory. True glory. The glory of the life of Christ indwelling you and me.