“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD has risen upon you.” – Isaiah 60:1
The wise men followed the star that shone so brightly, and they brought their gifts of gold and frankincense as Isaiah had predicted (but wait, there’s myrrh!), and they went to where one would expect glory to be – Jerusalem. The Capital. The place with the palace and the temple and the splendor. But that wasn’t where the glory was.
The star arose, and they were led to Bethlehem, where the Light of Light Himself had come, where the Glory of the LORD and His presence with His people was made manifest. Glory was there in Bethlehem, and the wise men rightly worshiped and offered their gifts, but what sort of glory was it?
An infant. A kid. Kids might be cute or cuddly (at least until they make a mess of things), but they aren’t seemingly “glorious”. And certainly not just some kid in some backwater town in the boonies. Yet, right there was glory. There was God present for His people to redeem them.
God’s glory is not shown or demonstrated in outward acts of might. It’s not a “my dad can beat up your dad” sort of glory. Oh, to be sure, God could act that way, but as we were born trapped in sin and bound in Satan’s kingdom, that beat down would have ended up beating us. Instead, God shows His glory in coming to earth in humility to be our brother, to win us the adoption of sons, to make the Father our Father once again. And this is done not through might or strength, but through weakness and humility. It is done through God becoming man – a weak and frail man who would suffer and die, and who would rise again. Rejoice, for the Glory of the LORD has come to you, and He has died and risen for you.