The Cross and the Eternal Glory of God

by T. Austin-Sparks

Chapter 2 - The House, The Name, and The Glory

John 17:1 - "Glorify thy Son, that the Son may glorify thee."
John 17:24 - "That they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world."
John 17:10 - "All things that are mine are thine, and thine are mine: and I am glorified in them."
John 12:28 - "Father, glorify thy name. There came therefore a voice out of heaven, saying, I have both glorified it, and will
glorify it again."
John 2:17 - "The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up."
Matthew 1:1 - "Jesus Christ, the son of David."
1 Chronicles 17:11, 12, 13 - "I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall be of thy sons; and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build me an house, and I will establish his throne for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son: and I will not take my mercy away from him, as I took it from him that was before thee."
Hebrews 1:5 - "For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? and again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?"

Solomon became a type of Christ, building the house and having a throne. Remember always that the house and the throne are combined in Christ. The spiritual temple or church, and the sovereignty of the Christ throned and eternal - these two things always go together. Now you have heard read already this evening that portion from the 2 Chronicles 6 where Solomon has built his Temple and dedicated it to the Lord and in his prayer he asks that (the Lord had said His name should be there) whenever prayer was directed toward that House and any man in any part of the earth looked thither with eyes of longing and spiritual hunger because the name of the Lord was there such a man should realise the Lord's loving-kindness and experience the Lord's power and deliverance. You will have, without my pointing it out, quite naturally as we have mentioned these passages picked up the link of association of three things -

The House - The Name - The Glory.

"The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up," said The One Who was to build a more glorious house than that of Solomon, a more wonderful temple than that which almost stunned the Queen of Sheba with its amazing beauty. Christ "as a Son over His own house, whose house are we, if we hold fast the confession of our faith," and over that house, which is more familiarly known to us as the Church which is His Body, is His Name: and the Name is the object of the glory - "Father glorify Thy Name." These things you may more fully connect, but we take up the inclusive suggestion of them in this word this evening that from eternity to eternity the object and basis of God's glory is His Name. And that glory, because of the Name, is to be revealed and manifested in the House upon which the Name rests. You notice our syllabus:-

The Glory Before Times Eternal; The Glory Incarnate;

now put these two things together - "The zeal of Thy House hath eaten me up." Isn't it remarkable that immediately associated with that prayer "Glorify," that declaration - "The zeal of Thy House hath eaten me up," the Pharisees say - Give us a sign; show us your credentials, what is your authority for doing this - using these knotted cords and driving out of the temple them that bought and sold? Give us a sign of authority for doing this. That was asked on the ground of this saying - "The zeal of Thine House hath eaten me up." His answer was, "Destroy this temple and in three days I will raise it up; this said He concerning His Body." The vindication of the sovereignty of Christ is in the Resurrection Body, in the triumph over death in the Body of the Resurrection, and when you get on to resurrection ground and talk about the Body you always remember that, so far as this world is concerned for present purposes, and beyond that of course, but immediately for present purposes, that Body is a corporate Body. Composed of all who have been united with Christ in resurrection life. You have no need that I remind you of 1 Corinthians 10:11.

Firstly, in 10:16 "The loaf which we break is it not the communion of the Body of Christ, seeing that we are one loaf, one Body." There is the loaf which represents inclusively the Christ and His members as one loaf.

11:24 - "This is my body, broken for you."

Now here you have this fact that He immediately refers to His Resurrection Body corporately as the vindication of His activities and the establishment of His sovereignty. Destroy this Sanctuary, this place of divine abode, in three days I will raise it up. That is my sign, and that is my vindication, the Resurrection Sanctuary, the Body of Christ. God vindicates Him, justifies Him, and upon that Body His Name rests. As the Lord's name symbolically rested upon the temple of Solomon, so the Name in reality rests upon this Resurrection Body, and the Name is the basis of the Divine Glory. "Glorify Thy Name."

Now if we had time and were so disposed we could go through the Word and trace the phrase - "The Name of the Lord" or "My Name," or "My Holy Name," and you will find a vast amount of light thrown upon this, that the one thing over which God is jealous is His Name, and the upholding of His Name is that upon which He displays His Glory.

Now all that is basic. I think it is perfectly clear, but it carries us back to the beginning of things which had their beginning, before times eternal. Let us remember, that the name does not necessarily represent a human title. It is that intrinsic value which is enshrined within the Name of the Lord. Lord. It is what the Name represents. Weymouth gives us such a splendid translation which helps us out here when he is translating about the Name that is above every Name, he translates it "Title of sovereignty above every title of sovereignty," and for purposes of definition I would make a further improvement and say - "The title to sovereignty above every title to sovereignty" because that is where you begin. You find that it was the title to supreme and all-inclusive and undivided sovereignty in the Universe which was assailed. It was assailed in heaven. The equality of the Son with the Father in the title to sovereignty was - as we have so often said - challenged and assailed by one who sought to have that selfsame equality - to be equal with God - and thus to get in and divide and occupy a place to which he was not entitled, and to take that name for himself unlawfully, ever to be worshipped as God. His last all-inclusive effort will be sought in the Temple of God being worshipped as God in the Anti-Christ. When I say the "all-inclusive," I mean that he will sum up every form throughout the ages of his attempt to get that possession. Every form in which he has come through the ages at different times, in different places, to take the place of God in the race and to capture the race for himself. In the gods of the Egyptians you have the thing back of a system with all its paraphernalia. In Canaanitish worship you have a system of demonology, the worship of demons and the initiate right of passing through the fire. This aspirant for the position of the Son of God has sought to capture the race, and in the Anti-Christ you will find that all these methods are summed up, in spiritism, and demon worship, veiled, covered and glorified as far as he can clothe it with all kinds of things which will capture the imagination and the soul of man, and he will be worshipped as God. Against the Name of the Lord has this thing been organised and projected and asserted. The title to sovereignty on the part of the Son is what the Name represents, and it is for the hallowing of that Name that the Son has come out from the bosom of the Father, and entered upon this tremendous work in and through His Cross, and gained by inheritance a more excellent name than angel and archangel, and that Name being the symbol of His rightful authority and sovereignty in the universe, in the heavens and in the earth, is the thing which God desires to glorify, and the devil desires to slander.

Now you understand, perhaps, if you look at it in this light, why it is that every diabolical trap and snare and resource is instituted and thrust forward against those who bear the Name of the Lord, for we, beloved, have to meet what no one else has to meet in these efforts of the Adversary simply because the Name is upon us, to slander and dis-hallow that Name in us and through us. In as much as the Lord has determined that His Name shall rest upon a spiritual house, a temple not made with hands, and that that Name shall be the thing which He will make glorious in and through and by that House, so, in the same degree and measure, the Adversary has determined if he can by any means to dishonour that Name as it is upon us as we hold it, and every time he gets an advantage where we are concerned, he is able to that degree to dishallow the Name, and therefore to rob God of His Glory. So then, the Glory of God is wrapped up with the hallowing of the Name. The object of the Lord is to get a people for His Name, and such as are consumed with the zeal of His House, and who at the same time will go forth as of that House "for the sake of the Name."

In those early days the Lord always glorified the Name as it was used corporately against the attempts of the adversary to assume the sovereignty and challenge the Divine authority. Wherever those men went upon whom the Name rested the enemy opposed and God vindicated the Name. In their act of witness and testimony to their identification with Christ the Name of the Lord was called upon them. James says "They continually blaspheme that Holy Name which was called upon you." The Name is not merely a label, it is a title or entitlement, and ultimately universal confession shall be made of that right to reign.

Now then the Lord says, in order that it might not be slandered, that there might be no ground for it to be dishallowed, "let everyone that nameth the Name of the Lord depart from iniquity"; for immediately you take that Name and iniquity is found in you the Name is dishallowed and dishonoured and the glory is arrested, because there is ground there upon which the enemy can operate to destroy the works of the Lord. I can see in all this an explanation of the enemy's assaults upon the Body of Christ and members in particular. As one has often said to you, it is not simply because of your individual importance or my individual importance. We don't count for anything in ourselves, but it is because of that Holy Name which has been called upon us that we become as out from Eternity the object of the enemy's interest and malice. Before times Eternal, but started on a much higher plane than ourselves, than the human race, he started upon the Son of God Himself who bore the name, the title of sovereignty equal with God. And this, beloved, on the other hand, is the motive for our standing fast and refusing, no matter what the cost is, to yield to the pressure of the enemy and to go down. We cannot, because of the Name, fail Him. We cannot yield because that Name is upon us. We cannot dishallow that Name by giving way to the enemy under his pressure. The motive is the Name, for the sake of the Name we must stand fast. But then this further thing is that God's glory is going to be manifest where His Name is, and that glory of course is the more enhanced by the intensity of the adversary's assaults upon us if we stand in the power of that Name. Christ, as we know, was the centre of assault and attack. All hell raged upon Him because of Who He was and what He was, but in the presence of Hell's most vicious assault as He came immediately under the shade of Gethsemane and the Cross He said - "The hour is come. Father, glorify Thy Name," and the Father responded - "I have and I will."

Beloved, believe this, that the hour of the fiercest and most awful assault on the Name may be the hour when the Name is the most glorified. When you feel that all hell has opened up to swallow you, then the Lord is to be most glorified. We have found it like that in the hour of direst and deepest anguish by reason of the pressure, we have appealed for the honour of that Name, and the Lord has come in and has been glorified in that hour - in that hour! - when the Cross was being shared in its deeper meaning, He has come in and been glorified in what He has done.

The Lord is very jealous for His Name, the hallowing of His Name, and He has said - "When ye pray," do not say this prayer, "but pray after this manner," according to these Eternal laws - "Father, Thy Name be hallowed." That is the quest, that is the fight of prayer, that is the issue on the battlefield of prayer, the hallowing of the Name in a realm where the Adversary is seeking to dishallow it, and believe me, Beloved, we are called into the fight and into the fire, into the conflict, into the very blood of Christ, and the anguish of Christ in the behalf of the Name. We are in this thing for the sake of the Name, we are being baptised into the honour of the Name. The honouring of the Name in this age is a terrific business, you know it. You recognise that this is registered in your own life, you know that in a hundred ways every day the Name could be easily dishallowed. Oh! the traps - we could never mention them all. We could not catalogue the traps that the Devil sets for the people of God. If he can only get an unholy alliance, some little fleshly link, some moving out from ourselves in the resources of the flesh, something he can make us say or do in any way whatever, if only he can get at that Name which we bear, so that that Name is dishallowed and dishonoured.

Now this then is the cry for the hallowing of the Name by the hallowing of ourselves who bear the Name, the consecration of our lives in the interests of that Name that God may be glorified where His Name is honoured. Life has got to be adjusted by the grace of God through the Cross to the hallowing of that Name - the cutting off of the flesh - and you appear in His presence because of His Name that is amongst you. Be sanctified! Sanctify yourselves, and there is only one means of sanctification, and that is the Cross.

The Cross is the means of sanctification, and therefore the means of the hallowing of the Name and therefore the means of the glorifying of God in Christ. This then is the emphasis upon the necessity of the Cross being accepted and planted deep in our lives to the cutting off of all that upon which the enemy can to the slightest degree achieve the ends which he had in view from eternity to take the glory from the Son of God. The Cross must cut off all flesh. So the Lord is glorified in us, but there is the other side, more positive and practical in the outworking that the Lord might be glorified through us, by our moving out as in Himself by the Spirit for the sake of the Name. This is one's confidence and one's hope. What is our assurance that, as we go forth, something will happen, something will be done, something will be accomplished? What assurance have we that when we move out there must be an issue? Well, we have no assurance in ourselves. It is not the value either of our praying in itself, nor of our preaching in itself, nor of all our labours in themselves. It is nothing that we can do in any way whatever that can give us an assurance of any effectiveness, but it is in THE NAME: That is a sound enough basis: That is a thing which is recognised in heaven, earth and hell, in the things above and under the earth. We have often quoted that passage very usefully, always coming in and helping us, concerning the Apostle meeting that situation in the Name, and effectively meeting it, but someone else came along and took it in a secondhand way - "In the Name of Jesus whom Paul preaches," and the issue was very different indeed! Instead of success, utter failure, and more than failure - an awful wreck! But to move out in the Name, not just using it in a secondhand way, adopting it as phraseology, but moving out experimentally in the Name because we stand cut off by the Cross from the thing which dishonours the Name - move out in that Name - this is the ground of our assurance that something must happen. God is jealous of His Name, very jealous, and God will always glorify His Name where it is truly and soundly proclaimed in the Spirit and acted upon under the leading of the Spirit. That is our assurance.

Beloved, you take the Name of Jesus, every one of you, and you see that it is a tremendous thing to bear the Name, to take the Name, it links you up with a thing of infinite significance and importance which began before the world was. It links you up with the battle of the ages, and it links you up with the glory of eternity when He shall come to be glorified in His saints, that is His church, where His Name is. We are linked with this eternal thing, to the glory of God associated with the Name which is to be established through the "Lamb slain from the foundation of the world," and we, in time, joined to Him in His cross. Even so shall the glory of God be revealed, and in a thousand ways the glory of the Lord may be revealed every day. I am not sure that the Lord is anxious to give a demonstrational display of His glory to mortals - "to cast His pearls before swine," but there is a realm in which the glory of the Lord has a signification which transcends that of this world by dimensions infinite. Oh! amongst principalities and powers the glory of the Lord means something, it is not an empty show. It is the establishment of His infinite title to sovereignty and the manifestation of the power of that sovereignty. We are in an enormous thing, and so your daily triumphs, by grace, go a long way beyond the local situation, a long way beyond our own gratification that we have not failed, they have registered something to the glory of God in a universe, the height and breadth and depth of which you have never imagined.

The glory of God is manifested by every victory won, by every standing steadfast, by every refusing to give up; the Name is saved from dishonour, and the Lord Himself, the Christ of God who bears that Name is vindicated before angels and before demons. There are elements of mystery about it, why it should be necessary, but there it is. It is the revelation of the Word that it is so, so our union with Him is a union with His Name in order that He might be glorified, and because He has called us under His Name to meet with Him this challenge with all its fury, its vehemence, its relentlessness, and we feel also the impact of that challenge and the hatred to that Name. He has assured us that if we suffer with Him we shall be glorified together with Him, and if we were chosen before the foundation of the world in Him, it is true, as the Word says, that we were chosen into His eternal glory - we shall arrive in the glory, experience the glory, know the glory, just as now we for the sake of the Name endure hardship. Stand steadfast, that that Name may be delivered out of the hands of His enemies and vindicated as the title to all sovereignty above every title of sovereignty in this age and in that which is to come.

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