Soli Deo Gloria (Philippians 4:19-20)
First Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 5:6-21; Matthew 22:34-40
Second Scripture Reading: Isaiah 6:1-13
Sermon Text: Philippians 4:19-20
Glory is first and foremost something that describes who God is. He is the Lord God Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and the whole earth is full of his glory. In response to the glory that he reveals in creation, providence, and grace, we as his creatures give him glory with our worship, thanksgiving, and obedience. Since God is the source of everything, he deserves to receive glory from all his creatures forever. The Apostle Paul writes in Romans 11:36, “For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.” This is the main difference between those who are man-centered and those who are God-centered. God created us to glorify and enjoy him forever, and so we must live not for our own glory, but for his. He must be at the center of all our affections, desires, actions, and motives. Our hearts sing with the Church throughout the ages, “Not to us, O LORD, not to us, but to your name give glory, for the sake of your steadfast love and your faithfulness!” (Psalm 115:1).
1. For review, read Philippians 4:14-23. What does Paul thank the Philippians for in these verses? Why is it significant that he describes their relationship as a “partnership”?
2. How is God’s glory described in Exodus 33:17 - 34:9; 40:34-38; Isaiah 6:1-7; and 42:8?
3. How does God reveal his glory in our redemption according to John 12:23-24; 27-28; 13:31-32; and Ephesians 1:13-14?
4. Read and discuss Westminster Confession of Faith Q/A 1-2. What are some things we learn in the Bible about how to glorify and enjoy God?
Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.
Q. 2. What rule has God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.
5. Take a few moments to reflect on our series through Philippians. What did you learn while studying this letter that was 1) new; 2) encouraging; and 3) challenging? How would you briefly summarize the purpose and themes of this letter?
6. In preparation for next week, read Matthew 21:1-11; Mark 11:1-10; Luke 19:28-40; John 12:12-19. What do you think is the significance of Jesus’ “triumphal entry” according to these passages?
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