September 07, 2015
From the desk of Dr. A.J. Higgins
Raised by the Glory of the Father
“Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of God the Father”
Into his teaching on the great subject of our baptism and identification with Christ to gain power over sin, Paul introduced a statement of incredible importance. We would have likely written that Christ was raised from the dead by the power of God. No doubt, the power of God was operative in His resurrection. Ephesians 1:19,20 stresses the power and might operative in His resurrection. But Romans brings another aspect of all that was involved that morning at the garden tomb. The Father’s glory was at work in raising Christ!
In what sense was He raised by the glory of the Father? How do you define glory? If we understand glory to be displayed excellence or inherent excellence, then what this verse is telling us is that every attribute of God demanded the resurrection of His Son.
His holiness had been satisfied and His Son could no longer remain in the tomb. His justice demanded resurrection. His love for His Son, His hatred of evil, His righteousness – every attribute of God demanded His exit from the tomb. His omniscience knew that atonement had been made for every sin and the need of an entire race. His omnipotence was exerted to overcome all the power of the enemy.
The Lord Jesus came forth from the tomb totally vindicated by His Father. He had been crucified in shame and dishonor. The cross, the worst of punishments and the most shameful of all deaths, had been prescribed for Him. He was the song of drunkards and the object of ridicule and mockery. Herod, Pilate, the Pharisees and Sadducees, and the nation all scorned and ridiculed Him.
But He was raised by the glory of the Father. Peter adds later that God “gave Him glory” (1Peter 1:21). He was raised by glory; He was raised in glory; He was raised and given glory; He was raised and ascended to glory (Heb 8:1). We sometimes sing:
“All the depths of Thy heart’s sorrow,
Told in answering glory now!”
The Father’s glory was operative in raising Him. Now He is in glory and will be eternally glorious – all His inherent excellencies displayed and enjoyed by the redeemed for all eternity. James goes one step further. He tells us “Our Lord Jesus Christ, the glory!” (James 2:1)
1. What other attributes of God can you see demanding the resurrection of Christ?
2. Do you think there is any significance that Paul uses the expression, the Glory of the Father and not the Glory of God?