We are in the midst of 50 Days of Prayer from Easter Sunday to Pentecost Sunday believing God for an unprecedented outpouring of the Holy Spirit’s Person, presence, power and provision. We are getting ready for revival, knowing that what is most needed in this hour is Christ’s church being fully alive in the Spirit, loving Jesus supremely and serving the world sacrificially.
Each week we have been focusing on keys to revival. Among these keys, we focused on repentance, humility, spiritual hunger and holiness—four important precursors for a mighty move of God’s Spirit to come and remain.
This week we are focusing on honor as another key to seeing the ongoing habitation of God in the Spirit. Again, we will answer three key questions: What is honor? Why is honor important? How do we show honor? For truly honoring God and man will change and shape our perspective in a profoundly powerful way.
A Story of Honor Saul, the first king of Israel, had disqualified himself from being king through his dishonoring of God and God’s man, the great prophet and judge, Samuel. After doing everything he could to mentor Saul in the ways of God, Samuel now had to go and tell Him that God had found a better man—an honorable man who was passionately pursuing the heart of God. This man was young David of Bethlehem—a teenager who held Yahweh in the highest and most honorable esteem. Samuel went to Bethlehem and anointed him as the future king.
After distinguishing himself in battle with the giant, Goliath, and with the Philistine armies, the people honored David for his consecrated commitment and courage. Among those who took notice of him was one Jonathan, the crown prince of Israel. He came to recognize the anointing that was on David to be Israel’s king one day. Though the throne was his for the taking, he stepped aside, offering his friend David all that was his to help him secure his God-given destiny. He loved and honored David, humbly recognizing, revering and receiving God’s will and David’s anointing and call. He rendered to God and David the honor that was due.
Saul, on the other hand, despised David, deeply resenting the attention and praise he was receiving. He did everything he could to dishonor and destroy David. In blind rage born out of jealousy and prideful carnality, Saul sought David’s life. In sharp contrast, Jonathan remained lovingly loyal to David. Where Saul saw David as a threat to the throne, Jonathan saw David as destined for the throne. Saul would be remembered in infamy, while Jonathan would be remembered as a supremely humble and honorable man—a man who honored God and His divine choosing and David and his divine calling.
What is honor? Honor has to do with therecognition of what is honorable in another, the reverence for what is honorable in another, the receiving from what is honorable in another, and the rendering to what is honorable in another.
With God, it is the recognition of God’s perfection and glory, the reverence for who He is and His absolute value in our lives, the receiving from Him all He desires to do in and through us, and the rendering to Him the honor and glory, love and obedience He so richly deserves. It is important to see that recognition and reverence are the inner attitudes of honor, and receiving and rendering are the outward actions of honor.
With others, it is the recognition of someone’s quality and character, the reverence for someone’s value and giftedness, the receiving from the deposits of the richness of God in them, and the rendering to them the honor, service and sacrifice they are due. But it must be God Himself who defines who and what are worthy of honor. Honor is subjective if it is separated from God’s revelation of what He divinely deems honorable.
Why is honor important? Honor enables us to see things from God’s perspective. When we see God rightly, we see everything and everyone rightly. Honor enables us to step into the vision of others and see what they’re seeing. Part of receiving a prophet’s reward is being able to see what they’re seeing by honoring the revelation they’re carrying. Honor ascribes the correct value to things. Honor helps us measure the treasure that is in others and receive the riches of the grace that is in them. Jesus could do no great miracle in His hometown because they dishonored and dismissed Him. But as for us, as we honor King Jesus and those in His kingdom, we will see the full release of the King’s work in our lives.
How do we show honor? Honor for God always begins with the attitude and action of praise. Our reasonable act of worship and honor to God is a life of sacrificial service. When we put another’s interests before our own, we bestow honor on them, which produces an environment of gratitude and grace that becomes filled with the fruit of love and unity. We must recognize the value and gifts in one another, being willing to receive from one another as we share and grow in the kingdom purposes of Christ. Showing honor to God by living a life of worship, walking in obedience, and showing honor to others for the grace and gifts God have given them open the door to powerful Spirit-filled fullness. And that is exactly what we are believing God for.
Remember: Honoring God and honoring others by the recognition of, the reverence for, the receiving from, and the rendering to according to who they are to us and among us fosters an atmosphere and environment of Spirit-filled fullness.