Today’s reading from Ezekiel 38 & 39. How is God glorified? We often, rightly, connect God’s glory with His positive attributes. He is unimaginably powerful, gracious, kind, loving, and merciful. Each of these characteristics of God are wondrous in their own ways, but together they establish the inexpressible greatness of God.
Yet, read Ezekiel 39:25-29 again. Do see what is implied? God’s greatness and glory are not just tied to Israel’s restoration, but also His holiness. He will do certain things because of His holy name. He will demonstrate His holiness by restoring them, sure, but look before these verses. Look at verse 21, “I will display my glory among the nations, and all the nations will see the judgment I have executed and the hand I have laid on them.” (Ezekiel 39:21, CSB)
His glory isn’t just tied to mercy, but to judgment as well. You see, God’s perfect holiness glorifies Him because it is executed in equality. In other words, there are no exemptions or exceptions to God righteous demands. This could be viewed as a negative for us, except that these verses indicate that God’s executed judgment on His people makes plain His glory. When that judgment is executed against His own people, then the nations learn the true worth and value of holiness.
In other words, God in His perfect holiness must always be valued above all else. When God proves this by being completely devoted to His holy and righteous ways, even when those He loves are envolved, then God is glorified even further. To put it another way, only a God is consistitently holy is worthy of worship and glorification.
Now, consider how much glory God has won by not even sparing His own Son as our substitution. The cross is the ultimate expression of God’s holiness, the greatest evidence of His glory, and the supreme example of His judgment. On the cross, Jesus died for those who did not yet believe in Him. When we experience the wonder of the cross, we experience the glory of a God who is truly holy and worthy of worship.