“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31) It’s a verse which is well known, and many Christians will heartily agree with the idea. Yet, are we actually doing all for the glory of God?
You see, the text does not say “do spiritual things, or even church ministry, to the glory of God”. Instead, it stresses to do “ALL” things to God’s glory. It’s a statement, an exhortation, in which Paul is telling us that in every single thing we do, every single thing, we should be striving to give glory to God. That there is no compartmentalisation of our lives in which we have spiritual things on one side, and our own private matters and affairs on the other.
Rather, the aim of giving “glory to God” in everything characterises a life intent on following Christ. It is one which acknowledges that our lives are to be lived all for Him, because our lives are to be a “living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God” (Romans 12:1). We display his supreme worth and that he is significantly worthy “to receive glory and honor and power” (Revelation 4:11) when we sacrifice to God all parts of our life, and orientate our priorities around glorifying Him. This is actually a restoration of what has always been the supreme purpose for all humanity, which was corrupted in the fall, and that is best summarised by the Westminster Shorter Catechism’s “Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever.”
That is what living is all about, and this is why looking to glorify God as we follow Christ should be our chief aim in life. So, how should we live a life which seeks to glorify God?
Firstly, we need to live in a way in accordance to how he wants us to live our life. This is called obedience, and is something that we are exhorted to do as followers of Christ, in response to being saved and reconciled. Secondly, we should seek to evaluate what we do, and see whether we are doing it for the glory of God.
How do you know if something is going to bring glory to God? Any action which will cause you to love God more, brings Him glory. Any action which will help you to trust God more, brings Him glory. Likewise, any action that helps you to obey God, to serve God, any goal that causes you to want to tell unbelievers about the goodness and mercy of God – these all bring glory to God.
As Christians, we are called to live lives in response to the saving grace we have received through Christ. This means, living in a way and performing actions which are reflective of this truth. In John 15:8, Jesus states, “My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit.” This is because when we live lives which are obedient to the Father, and are marked by a love of Christ and a desire to bring glory to God, the world will “see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
So how can you bring glory to God? “Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work.” (Colossians 1:10)
Are you doing everything for the glory of God?