“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
This familiar verse has a clear message. Prior to our salvation, we were all unredeemed sinners and fell short of the glory of God. But I have always wondered, “Why did Paul make a connection between unredeemed sinners and falling short of God’s glory? After all, even after we are saved, aren’t we always falling short of God’s glory?”
Even as a youngster, this connection confused me. By God’s grace and later in life, He awakened me to the true connection. And the implication of this understanding is huge.
You see, I had always seen “glory” as something only associated with God, never with us humans. But Jesus, in His prayer to the Father, says about the disciples, “The glory that You have given Me, I have given to them” (John 17:22). Jesus has given it, past tense. It has happened. Jesus gave His glory to the disciples because they believed in Him.
Likewise, this message is for all of us who would believe in the name of the Son. God has given His glory to us! As former sinners who have been redeemed, we carry God’s glory in us! YOU ARE GLORIOUS!
That is the connection of Romans 3:23. Only unredeemed sinners fall short of God’s glory. We who have believed in the Son are enveloped with God’s glory. The glory of God shines upon us. In fact, God’s glory upon us is what is transforming us. “But we all with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror (that is you in the mirror, my friend) the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit” (II Corinthians 3:18).
We are carriers of God’s glory. Have I said it yet? YOU ARE GLORIOUS!
And finally, there is no pride or arrogance in this reality. Only gratitude. Only faith to believe it. Only humility because God alone accomplished this for you and me. YOU ARE GLORIOUS!