I think we find it easy to consider “God’s glory” some tangible experience like, a golden cloud or angelic visions. Yes, God still does those things but, is that his usual method or the rare exception?
Paul wrote to Corinth that the God shines His Light within hearts revealing the knowledge of God’s glory in the face of Jesus.
Maybe, his point was that the Holy Spirit simply illuminates the reality of who God is by revealing Him through Jesus. Practically. In ways that we can personally, individually understand it and receive it.
I don’t know about you but, I have never seen a manifested “glory cloud”. I’m not sure, if I would recognize what God’s point would be if I ever did. Yes, God is glorious and awesome and I worship him.
But, what does a glory cloud mean if it shows up during our worship?
The Old Testament made bold claims that can’t be forgotten in our Better Covenant today! The Prophets declared about God ~ “The whole earth is filled with your glory!” David wrote in Psalm 119 that “The whole earth is filled with your love!”
All of this was before the Power of the Cross and Resurrection of the King of Kings!
Jesus continued this theme as he prophesied to the faithful 11 disciples that “He has loved us with God’s love” (John 15:9) and that God was giving us His glory! (John 17:22) He declared that the purpose of us having his glory was for our complete unity. That we would be united as God is One!
I don’t know how literal to take that but, it’s a lot more united than we are now. And it will happen! It’s up to us to do it. But, this glory of unity is based on one thing.
Love is the perfect bond of unity and is above all things! (Col.3:14)
What if the world seeing God’s glory is up to us? What if God has done his part and is waiting for us to do ours? He poured His love into us (Rom.5:5) and gave us his glory but is waiting for us to simply
“Love one another as I have loved you” (John 13:34)
Maybe that’s what it will take for “For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” (Hab.2:14) It’s not his glory that will fill the earth. His glory already does fill it!
Maybe it’s us carrying and revealing the intimate (yada) knowledge of God’s glory, his love that will cover the entire world that He is waiting for.
Maybe God’s greatest glory is not when he manifests some mysterious glowing cloud in our presence and we all feel special. Maybe it’s when He doesn’t have to do anything more visually stimulating for us because we have so much faith in his love that we manifest his glory to those that despise and persecute us.
Maybe that’s more like the foolishness of the cross that overcame the powerful ways of the world.