It is not good to eat much honey, nor is it glorious to seek one’s own glory.
Whose glory do we seek? Whom do we want to praise? At the core of our fallen nature is an insatiable desire to be praised. The initial sinful desire to “be like God” (Gen. 3:5) is fully accompanied with the desire to be inordinately admired and honored.
Jesus mentioned to be aware of doing things “before other people in order to be seen by them” (Matt. 6:1). How many times are we guilty of doing so? We do something good and right, while immediately desiring people’s approval and praise. Jesus even went so far as to say: “How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God? (John 5:44).
Why is it that seeking one’s own glory is detrimental to faith? The essence of faith is dependence. It’s being “poor in spirit,” having no self-sufficiency to commend oneself to God. It’s taking Jesus as one’s all. That also means rejecting all self-exaltation.
God designed our salvation in such a way that it’s impossible to boast in oneself: “. . . so that no human being might boast in the presence of God. . . . so that, as it is written, ‘Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord’” (1 Cor. 1:29, 31). In the gospel there’s only room for Christ’s glory.
The good news is that that we’ve been called through the gospel to “obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 2:14). How? God has given us the very righteousness of His Son as a free and everlasting possession, which includes all the favor, blessings, promises, and honor that such a righteousness is entitled to.
When we see these gospel truths in relation to today’s verse, we realize that it’s not “glorious to seek one’s own glory.” Actually, it’s detrimental. When we seek our own glory, we’ll end up with shame, eventually coming to a final realization that man, apart from Christ, has no glory at all. Apart from Him, we’ve only sin and subsequent shame. However, when we seek Christ’s glory, we’ll end up with being an everlasting partaker of His righteousness and all His glory as the One who fulfilled all righteousness on our behalf.
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The Devotional Writer
Author of “An Unfathomable Gift!“