. . . and we have seen his glory. (John 1:14)
What a difference one word can make! In John 1:14, we read that God’s Word “dwelt among us,” but that is just one word in Greek. It’s the verb for “tenting” or “to set up a tent.” But really it means “to tabernacle,” and that brings us back to Exodus 40. The people of Israel built a tabernacle in the wilderness, a place where God could live among his people. When the book of Exodus concludes, the glory cloud of God descends on that tent and the people fall back in awe before the sheer weight of God’s presence (the Hebrew word for “glory” really means “heavy”).
Eventually, that glory moved into Solomon’s temple in Jerusalem (1 Kings 8). But over time Israel sinned. They worshiped idols and so God’s glory could not stay. Sadly, that’s why in a vision the prophet Ezekiel beheld God’s glory leaving the temple and heading to the hills. True, the glory would come back one day, Ezekiel promised. But when?
In John 1:14 Jesus became God’s tabernacle and God’s glory roared into it and will never be taken away again. The disciples started to see Jesus’ glory during his life here on earth, but one day we will all see it in the New Jerusalem. We won’t even need the sun to shine anymore then, John will say in the book of Revelation, because we will have the glory of God shining from Jesus and that will be light enough for everyone forever! —Scott Hoezee
Prayer: We have seen your glory, O God, in the radiance of your Son Jesus! Amen.