Romans 11:33: Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, / or who has been his counselor? / Or who has given a gift to him / that he might be repaid? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.
No one can negotiate with God or bargain with him. If we are honest we often say with our lives, I will do this for you, God, if you will do this for me However, our very existence has been given to us by His mercy.
Key question: So WHY are ALL things from, through, and to Him? Answer: God loves the glory of His name!
The desire of Gods heart is first and foremost the glory of His name and not primarily our salvation; though He loves to save, he saves and does all He does for the glory of His name (Ex. 14:4,18; Ps 25:11; Ps 23:3; 2 Sam 7:23; Is 48:9-11; John 17:4).
We are wired to worship something. Food, drink, sex, music, recreation, et al is all meant to drive us to see and be pointed to worship God.
Glory Thieves are really bound up in that old word idolatry. Idolatry is when this worship terminates on the thing and does not point beyond the thing to the beauty of the Person it was meant to point.
Who tells a Husker fan to stand up and then open their mouth in yelling when the first series for our Blackshirts goes three and out? Eighty thousand respond to this event with un-premeditated excitement! The question is not, is this worship (because it is J) the question is what in this event can point us the glory and the spectacular nature of God? Do we stand and yell along in this cultural phenomenon with our excitement terminating on the Huskers or pointing us to something greater will all our affection? Depending on how we answer this question makes us either glory thieves or Glory reflectors.
Is this spectacular, emotional moment a window (pointing us to see something THROUGH the pane of glass) or a door (an end in itself)? One is idolatry and one is WHY we were made; one ultimately ends in emptiness one is joy today and for all time BY enjoying God now through His Son this is worship!
So, in every turn of our day, do we see doors or windows?