The Gospel of John: A Foretaste of Glory Divine.

“Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.” (John 17:24)

As I am writing this devotional (December 18), I am coming down from the emotional and spiritual high from last evening’s memorial and celebration service in loving memory of my pastor and mentor Rev. William C. “Billy” Walker. What a praise gathering it truly was filled with touching and humorous testimonials, gospel music, spirit filled preaching and a church sanctuary filled with not only the wonderful presence of God’s people but also the holy presence God Himself. I, along with everyone else in attendance, did not want the evening to conclude.

Of the many memories I have of Billy was when he would lead in singing. It would either be as the pastor of Calvary Baptist Church of Southgate , MI or at Hiawatha Youth Camp where he served as camp director. One of the hymns I recall as being a favorite of his was Fanny Crosby’s Blessed Assurance. When we would begin singing the chorus, he would slow down the tempo so that we would sing each word measured and prolonged.

Today’s text from John 17:24 reminds me of the first stanza of that hymn. It reads:

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine
O what a foretaste of glory divine
Heir of salvation, purchase of God
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.

Jesus prayed to God the Father that all those who the Father had given to Him (John 6:35-66) would not only be with Him but would also see His glory. This is the glory of the only begotten Son of God, full of grace and truth (John 1:14). This glory is not only the substantive and holy character of God but also the brightness of His holiness which Jesus possessed before the universe began.

The memorial service on Monday, December 17 was a foretaste of glory divine, as is our personal salvation from God the Father by grace alone, through faith alone in the person and work of Jesus Christ alone. The glory Jesus spoke of is the glory my pastor, mentor and friend is now in the presence of. It is also the blessed and assured promise that each believer possesses in Jesus Christ.

You may think of this hymn today as you go about your daily chores and responsibilities. You may even hum or sing it to yourself. Remember to hold out the words of the chorus.

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine
O what a foretaste of glory divine
Heir of salvation, purchase of God
Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood

Perfect submission, all is at rest
I in my Savior am happy and blessed
Watching and waiting, looking above
Filled with His goodness, lost in His love

This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long
This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long

May God’s truth and grace reside here.

Soli deo Gloria!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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