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March 28, 2015 at 4:38 pm #4948
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God’s ReputationBy Justin Johnson
A reputation concerns how others see you.
God has a high reputation. God created all things by His own power. He is eternal without beginning and end. He is above all nations, and His glory above the heavens. He is naturally righteous, holy, loving, and gracious.
Man has a low reputation. Man was created from dirt. He is born weak and to trouble. Few become strong or wise enough to rule over a single business, rarer still are those that reign over a single nation. The ordinary man’s life is spent in vanity, pride, sin, and vainglory.
When God was manifest in the flesh he made himself of no reputation. He did not stop being God, nor did he become less God. He did not remove, empty, or lay aside any of his attributes as God.
He made himself of no reputation.
“Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men” – Philippians 2:6-7
A reputation concerns how others see you.
When God was manifest in the flesh, what they saw did not appear to be an eternal being who had created all things and dwelt outside time and space.
When unbelievers saw Jesus, they saw a man that had the reputation of every other man. When believers saw Jesus, they were looking at the fullness of the Godhead bodily with no reputation.
Why would God make himself of no reputation? Why would anyone want to lower their own reputation, not to mention allowing others to spit on it? (Luke 18:32)
The fullness of the Godhead bodily, in fashion as a man with low reputation, falsely accused of crimes against Himself died innocently on a cross, naked and next to thieves. God was not only of no reputation, he appeared disreputable.
A reputation concerns how others see you. To look at Jesus on the cross, His low reputation as a man was not worthy of His nature as God. He had a reputation dying as a sinner, though He knew no sin.
God’s Reputation Returns
His reputation would not remain so low.
Jesus, being God, resurrected from the dead and ascended to heaven in a glorified body. God’s reputation began to change as it was preached by the apostles that God manifest in the flesh was both Lord and Christ (Acts 2:36).
God’s reputation improved again when he appeared from glory to save a sinner undeserving of salvation (Acts 9:4).
A reputation concerns how others see you, and Paul saw the resurrected Lord in glory above all things according to the revelation of the mystery (Eph 1:9-10; Rom 16:25). Paul was sent to preach God’s exalted reputation in Christ.
God manifest in the flesh was not only the Creator, Lord, and Christ, but now was known as the Saviour of all men, the Head of the church, exalted above all things both in heaven and in earth (Phil 2:9-11)!
God who once had a high reputation, and then made himself of no reputation, now has a reputation greater than ever. He is both Just and the Justifer, Judge and Mediator, the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13).
God’s High Reputation
What commends God’s high reputation is that now we know why he made himself of no reputation. God made himself of no reputation for the sake of sinners.
He was willing to be made of no reputation to save those of low reputation. Christ considered our salvation more than his own reputation.
God did not compromise, empty, remove, or lay aside any of his attributes of God when he was manifest in the flesh. He knew what he was doing all along to the praise of His glory.
God put on the likeness of sinful humanity to provide salvation to sinners as the resurrected Saviour.
“Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth” – Philippians 2:10-11
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