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“BECAUSE JESUS WAS NOT YET GLORIFIED”
A READER inquires for the evidence that our Lord Jesus has yet been glorified as we have taught in MILLENNIAL DAWN. He says, “From the Song of Solomon (2:10) and other places I gather the thought that he (our Beloved) is just as anxious for the marriage as we (the Church) are;” and quotes from Rom. 8:17 and Col. 3:4, “glorified together,” as proof that our Lord Jesus will not be glorified until the Church is completed and glorified. He refers to Heb. 1:6,—”When he bringeth again the first begotten into the world he saith—Let all the angels of God worship him,” and holds that it will be fulfilled at the second advent of Christ.
We reply, that the matter is settled beyond all peradventure by the text which we use as the caption of this article,—”The holy spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” So says the inspired Apostle. (John 7:39.) Hence, when, about fifty days afterward (after our Lord had finished his sacrifice and had been raised from the dead by the Father’s power, and had ascended up on high there to appear in the presence of God on our behalf), the holy spirit was poured out upon the Church, at Pentecost, it became a sure indication that at that time our Lord had been glorified. Notice this point distinctly. If the holy spirit was not given before, because Jesus was not yet glorified, it PROVES that when it was given, a little later, he had been glorified.
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Come now, and see the picture of his own glorification, given to us by our Lord, through his servant John. (Rev. 1:1.) It is recorded in Rev. 5. He that sits upon the throne is Jehovah. The scroll in his right hand is his plan for human redemption, sealed from all until the one “worthy” to carry out to completion its details should be found and proved “worthy.” The inquiry, “Who is worthy to open the book [scroll] and to loose the seals thereof?” had long been made: for four thousand years, from the giving of the promise that the seed of the woman should bruise the serpent’s head, it had been the query—Who shall be esteemed, by Jehovah God, to be worthy to perform his gracious purposes, and thus be honored above all others as the Servant (messenger) of the New Covenant of grace?
When silence prevailed, and none was found worthy either in heaven or on earth (representing the condition of things prior to the first advent), John began to weep, saying to himself: Alas! tho God has some gracious and wise plans for the welfare of his creatures, we may never know them, because none is found worthy to know or to execute them. So it was that even our Lord Jesus, prior to the finishing of his sacrifice, as he then declared, did not know all about the Father’s plans, and times, and seasons.—Mark 13:32.
But John’s tears were soon dried, when the angel declared, “Weep not, for the Lion of the tribe of Judah hath prevailed [hath overcome, so as to be accepted and declared worthy] to open the scroll and to loose the seals thereof.” We know well who is meant; and the further unfolding of the panoramic vision leaves no doubt. Jesus our Lord is symbolized by a slain
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lamb restored to life, and to him was given the wonderful scroll which represents the divine plans, with authority and power to accomplish them all. Then (after his resurrection and ascension to the right hand of the Father) he was glorified and received a name above every name; then all the angels of God worshiped him; then their thousands of thousands and myriads of myriads sang a new song, saying, “Thou art worthy to take the scroll and to loose the seals; because thou wast slain, and didst redeem* unto God with thy blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation.” “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain, to receive the power, and wealth, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing.” And when to him was thus given a name above every name, all the holy ones bowed and offered sweet incense of prayer and homage; because God had honored him by delivering to him the scroll of wisdom, and the power and authority to execute all of its provisions. He is worthy; and the Apostle declares that it is now, therefore, God’s will that all “should honor the Son even as they honor the Father.”—Acts 5:31; Phil. 2:9-11; John 5:23.
*Oldest MS., with evident propriety, omits us, since the angels were not redeemed.
Since his glorification the Lamb has been breaking the seven seals and thus opening the divine plan before men and angels, and we now living are privileged to share this knowledge more abundantly than others,—because, the last seal having been broken, the scroll is open to all who follow the Lamb in love and obedience and meekness; and “the mystery of God is [about] finished.”—Rev. 10:7.
Further evidence on this subject is unnecessary; the testimony that our Lord was glorified, and invested with honor and power and dominion at his ascension, is overwhelming. His promise to his followers is that, as he overcame and was glorified to share the Father’s throne (glory, dignity, power), even so they, if faithful, will be glorified to share his throne (glory, honor).
The sense of Heb. 1:4-6 (Diaglott) is that, when God had glorified Christ, mankind in general knew it not, but when, as God’s messenger, he is again presented to men, at his second advent, it will be in full demonstration that all the angels of God (all of God’s holy ones) worship, reverence and obey him. And in the expression, we shall be “glorified together” the word “together” does not mean simultaneously, at the same instant, but harmoniously, to share the same glory. In proof of this, note the context (see Diaglott); the suffering “with him” or “together” does not mean that we suffer at the same time, but that we share the same kind of suffering, for the same cause of faithfulness to God, and that in due time we shall be glorified “together;” i.e., in the sense of sharing the same glory wherewith our Lord has already been glorified.
This glorification or instalment in honor and power should not, however, be confounded with the change which occurred at our Lord’s resurrection; by which he was raised a spiritual being of the highest order, the divine nature. As the human body was termed a “body of humiliation,” so his spirit body is termed “a glorious body.” This, however, has nothing whatever to do with the glory or majesty of office to which our Lord was introduced fifty days later, when “he ascended up on high” and was received as a sharer of the Father’s throne. The latter glory and majesty is shortly to be made manifest to men,—”The glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.” But they will not see the Lord’s glorious person, as our Lord declared before he died,—”Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more.”
Likewise the Church, the “overcomers,” his “body,” his “bride,” will in their resurrection change be granted spiritual and glorious bodies (1 Cor. 15:42-44) and afterward “see him [the Lord] as he is” and be caused to share his glory, to sit with him in his throne.
— May 15, 1897 —