Is Your Life a Proclamation of Soli Deo Gloria?
“Paul, an apostle—not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ and God the Father, who raised him from the dead—and all the brothers who are with me, to the churches of Galatia: Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.” Galatians 1:1-5
When Paul wrote his letter to the Galatians, there was no question who the glory was directed to.
He begins with his apostleship—not from man nor through man. Paul did not make himself an apostle by studying, by works, or by being worthy. Paul’s apostleship was assigned to him by God alone—not based on his own efforts, because Paul was a hateful Pharisee who killed God’s people. Rather, God showed Paul mercy and decided to make him an instrument of His grace.
Paul continues his greeting: grace to you and peace. The people of Galatia were under the influence of legalistic heresy, proclaiming they could be saved by their own works such as circumcision and observation of special days. They were trying to create their own grace and peace with God. But who does Paul declare as the Giver of grace and peace? God alone. It is only by God’s gracious choice that a person is brought to peace with Him.
Finally, Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross. It was not to glorify man. It is not because we were worth dying for. It is not because we had hidden potential in ourselves that only God could see and decided He needed. Christ’s sacrifice was to the glory of God alone—to glorify Him as the merciful and mighty Father that He is.
Who does glory belong to? Whose glory should our lives reflect? Like a mirror, we should reflect the glory of God in all we do, with each step we take, because all glory is His and not to be shared. Let us kill our glory-stealing hearts. To Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Dear God, forgive me for the times I try to take glory for myself. Forgive me for when I do good deeds and say the right things so that others will notice me. Help me to be a reflection of You and Your glory. Help me to humbly point others to You, not myself. You alone are worthy. Amen.
In what ways have you tried to take the glory for yourself? Take some time to reflect on your life this week, and consider if there are any times when you have done something for the glory of yourself.