What God has for us just gets better and better as we move from glory to glory! God says, Rejoice, in as much as you are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when His glory shall be revealed, you may be glad also with exceeding joy. If you be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are you; for the Spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: (I Peter 4:13-14).
That’s what has been in the heart of every martyr for Christ. What ever the cost, there was no turning back… even in the Roman Coliseum, as the Christians were fed to Nero’s lions, their prayer was not for deliverance, but that they might be a witness for their Lord, even in the hour of death.
They knew – oh, they knew that In the midst of their suffering, as they were partakers of Christ’s suffering, so when His glory is revealed, He had made them a promise! “You will rejoice with exceedingly great joy.” Hallelujah! That is why the trail of the followers of Christ is one of faithfulness, even unto death, prison or ridicule, that’s why people go on even today to the dark and lonely places on earth to bare the good news of Jesus. They are there because they care. They may not have much now, but one day, when God reveals His glory, He is going to say ‘you’ve got My glory, too’. That’s why you can be faithful and go on whatever the cost, trust Him, if you be reproached for the name of Christ – Happy are you.
I know what that means, as I have walked the roadsides of the world’s six continents with a twelve foot cross. I have had countless people laugh, mock and jeer at me. I have been beaten, stoned, shot at, put in prison, spit on, taken out before a firing squad, cursed, rejected and many other humiliating things. But, I just praise the Lord! I’m full of His riches in glory, “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so.” I have more joy than any critic I’ve had.
If grown people are not ashamed to play with balls; footballs, volleyballs, baseballs, handballs, pool balls, sockerballs, ping pong balls, golf balls, basketballs, etc., I’m not ashamed of Jesus. But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and unto the world. (Galatians 6:14).
Praise the Lord! He is worthy of your best or nothing at all! He’s worth going with all the way or not at all. Let nothing quench the fire of the Lord burning in you. if any man suffer as a Christian, let him glorify God. . . (1 Peter 4:16), because we, like Peter, the writer of this book, are a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: (I Peter 5:1). If you partake of something, it means you get to receive it, take it in, be a part of. That is His promise – you can be a partaker of the glory!! And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, you shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. (I Peter 5:4). Isn’t that beautiful! God will crown us with His glory! What we have in the Lord is rich, glorious and everlasting!
I have met some people that already seem to have that crown of glory on them. They have the ‘light of the knowledge of the glory of God’ in their heart; and the ‘countenance of the Lord’ upon them. You have met them and you see the glory of God in them. You sense that God is with them. I mean they are not in the world for anything else. They are Godly, Godly minded, they talk about the Lord, they think about the Lord, they love the Lord; they are friends of God and they love people, not things. They are not carnal, they are spiritually minded. The Bible says that they are going to receive a crown of Glory.
Whatever that crown of Glory is, it is gonna be glorious! How can one trade a crown of Glory for a few American dollars, a little real estate, a sparkling ring, or a bit of fleshly sin . . . oh no! God is calling you. But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you, to him be glory… (I Peter 5:10-l1).