You and I are HARD-WIRED FOR GLORY. We were created for glory. This is why we can worry so much about our golf scores; we want to appear better than we really are. This is why we can become majorly concerned about our children’s’ behavior, not for their sakes, but because of how it reflects on us. This is why we become so reactive to criticism or lack of acclaim from others.
Think about all of the counterfeit glories we look to for satisfaction. It is amazing how we can so easily use God’s good things and blessings and turn them into false sources of life and soul satisfaction. We use relationships, possessions, religion, reputation, and notoriety; all good things in themselves, but they are powerless to die for our sins, provide forgiveness, and love us with a perfectly steadfast love.
Jesus teaches us in this passage that we must seek the glory that comes from the ONLY God. Jesus was talking to a group of very religious people who thought that through searching and studying the Torah they would earn and obtain eternal life. Yet, for all of their study, Jesus laid on them a very sobering indictment: I do not see the love of God in you. They were after a counterfeit glory that would come from others who would slap them on the back and say, “Wow, your knowledge and insights are fantastic!” Their glory was a “back-slapping glory.” So, they were not concerned about loving God or all of their neighbors. They were only concerned about the gaining of knowledge which puffed them up. The glory they were pursuing was wrapped up in pride and notoriety.
This form of glory was seen as being so valuable and essential to them that they refused to come to Jesus through faith and repentance. So, they did not have life nor deep, soul satisfaction. They refused to come to Jesus because their back-slapping glory was too important to them. They were seeking to get life from it rather than from the One who alone is life. Jesus reminded them that if they truly listened to their main theological teacher and hero, Moses, they would believe in Him because Moses wrote about Him! They were blinded by their false and very temporal pursuit of glory.
So, we must ask ourselves some important questions. Does God’s Word abide in me? Am I seeking for life in Jesus or FROM other things? Is the love of God in me and visible to others? In what do I boast as the source of my life? Only Jesus satisfies the soul!