“This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me.”
You will never glorify God without a death. When you die, you are identifying with Christ; therefore, you must die if you want to glorify the LORD. Does this mean that we must physically die? Absolutely not; although, you may one day have to die for identifying with Christ. So, what does it mean that you must die to glorify the LORD?
It is interesting that these words were spoken to Peter. When you look at Peter, you find that Peter struggled with a few things that kept him from glorifying the LORD in his life. It was Peter who stood and denied Christ three times before the cock crew. It was Peter that said to the disciples, “I go a fishing.” It was Peter who was asked three times, “Lovest thou me?” Certainly, Peter had a heart that wanted to serve the LORD, but he struggled with translating the desire to action. However, Jesus revealed that the way to translate the desire to serve the LORD unreservedly is to die to self for the purpose of glorifying the LORD. Let me show you through Peter’s life some things you must die to if you are going to glorify the LORD with your life.
First, you must die to the world’s approval. Peter was very concerned with being accepted by the crowd when he denied the Saviour. You will never glorify God with your life if you don’t overcome the concern about what others think of you. You must only be concerned with one thing, glorifying the LORD. When you die to self, you will find that glorifying the LORD won’t be that difficult to do.
Second, you must die to the past. After Jesus was presumed dead was when Peter told the disciples that he was going fishing. He had yet to die to returning to the past life. You will never glorify the LORD when returning to the world and the past life is an option. You must burn all bridges to your past life if you are going to glorify the LORD in your life.
Third, you must die to worldly possessions. Peter’s love for the Saviour over worldly possessions was in question to Jesus, and that is why He asked three times, “Lovest thou me?” You cannot glorify God with your life when you desire worldly possessions. Worldly possessions will always pull you away from the LORD if that is what you desire. If your whole purpose of living is to glorify God with your life, the amount or quality of your worldly possessions will be of no concern.
Fourth, you must die to mediocrity. The half in and half out mentality that Peter had kept him from glorifying the LORD. Jesus wanted Peter’s unwavering love; whereas, Peter thought is fondness was good enough. The only way you can glorify the LORD with your life is with a love that has no limits for God. You must be willing to lose all as verse 18 points out. Your love for the LORD should cause you to be willing to die for the Saviour if you must. It is only with an all-out love for Christ that you will glorify the LORD with your life.
One day when your body lies in a casket, others will then be a judge as to if you glorified the LORD with your life. I have attended the funeral of many precious saints of God who glorified the LORD with their life. The only thing that ultimately matters in eternity is if you glorified God with your life. Let me ask you; if you died today, would the life you have lived glorified the LORD? Let me encourage you to die to self so that your life will be one that glorifies the LORD.