Moses gives us a second encouragement. God’s glory will not only sustain you, but God’s glory will also change you. Do you want to know the best way to grow as a Christian? It’s this—serve God. For seven years it was my privilege to pastor the Moody Church in Chicago, and I read extensively about the life of D. L. Moody, the great evangelist and educator. One of Mr. Moody’s principles of ministry was this: As soon as a person gets saved, put him to work. Find something he can do for God, and he will grow. Mr. Moody was able to develop a number of Christian leaders simply because he put people to work.
Those of us who serve God for His glory experience a wonderful change in our lives. This change is illustrated in Exodus 32 and 33. Moses went up to the mountaintop. While he was there, the people made an idol (see Ex. 32). God said, in effect, “Look what your people are doing! I will have to judge them” (vv. 7-10). Before Moses went down and dealt with their sin, he did something not many people would do—he prayed for those people (vv. 11-14). He said, in effect, “Lord, for Thy name’s sake, do not destroy Thy people. The Egyptians and other nations will say that the Lord was not able to take care of Israel!” Moses interceded for his people in love. God made an offer to Moses. God said, “Let me wipe them out, and I will take you and your family and start a new nation” (see v. 10). That is quite a temptation for a leader! Moses said, “No, You made a covenant with Abraham and Isaac and Jacob. These are Your people. Forgive them” (see vv. 11-14). God disciplined Israel for their sin, but God did forgive them.
What happened while Moses was on the mountaintop? He picked up God’s glory on his face! When Moses came down from the mountaintop, his face was shining (see Ex. 34:29-35). That is what happens when you serve the Lord—God shares His glory. You may not see it, but others will. Moses did not know that his face was shining, but the people could see it. Moses had to put a veil over his face sot he people would not see the glory fading away (see II Cor. 3:7-18). After all, who wants to follow a leaders whose glory is fading away? When Moses went back up the mountain to meet God, he took off the veil and received some more of the glory.
You and I can have this “glory experience” as we serve God. The key is given in II Corinthians 3:18: “But we all [not just Moses], with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed [transfigured] into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit” (NASB). When the child of God looks into the Word of God (the mirror) and sees the glory of God, he is transfigured by the Spirit of God into the image of God. Moses reflected the glory, but you and I have the joy of radiating the glory. God changes us within to be like Jesus!
When you serve God, God’s glory sustains you, and God’s glory changes you. You may not see it. You may look at yourself and say, “I am such a failure as a Christian.” But God sees it, other people see it, and they are blessed by it.
Finally, there is a third encouragement: God’s glory rewards you. Moses was rewarded for his faithful service. When Moses died, he knew that his work was not in vain. What Moses taught and what Moses did was fulfilled in Jesus Christ. Moses was there in glory with the Lord Jesus! Be encouraged—the best is yet to come! We have not received our wages yet, we have not received our final reward yet. Don’t be discouraged! God’s glory is going to reward you. One of these days, when we see the Lord Jesus Christ, He will reward us according to our labors and according to our faithfulness. Let’s do our work to the glory of God. Don’t quit! Don’t write that letter of resignation! Wait and pray and see the glory of God! God’s glory sustains you, God’s glory changes you, and God’s glory rewards you.
© 2006, Warren Wiersbe
Dr. Warren Wiersbe (1929-2019) was an internationally known Bible teacher, author, and conference speaker. He graduated in 1953 from Northern Baptist Theological Seminary in Lombard, Illinois. While attending seminary, he was ordained as pastor of Central Baptist Church in 1951 and served until 1957. From September 1957 to 1961, Wiersbe served as Director of The Literature Division for Youth for Christ International. From 1961 to 1971 he pastored Calvary Baptist Church of Covington, Kentucky south of Cincinnati, Ohio. His sermons were broadcast as the “Calvary Hour” on a local Cincinnati radio station. From 1971 to 1978, He served as the pastor of Moody Church in Chicago 1971 to 1978. While at Moody Church he continued in radio ministry. Between August 1979 and March 1982, he wrote bi-weekly for Christianity Today as “Eutychus X”, taught practical theology classes at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Illinois, and wrote the course material and taught a Doctor of Ministry course at Trinity and Dallas Seminary. In 1980 he transitioned to Back to the Bible radio broadcasting network where he worked until 1990. Dr. Wiersbe became Writer in Residence at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids and Distinguished Professor of Preaching at Grand Rapids Theological Seminary. In his lifetime, Dr. Wiersbe wrote over 170 books—including the popular Be series, which has sold over four million copies. Dr. Wiersbe was awarded the Gold Medallion Lifetime Achievement by the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association (ECPA).