Over 50 years ago (I’m old—I know), I sang with a men’s group with about 25-30 members. We called ourselves Deo Gloria, and we would sing in different churches about 3-4 times a month on Sunday evenings. What is Deo Gloria? The name of a singing group, a motto for numerous colleges?
Several composers, including Johann Sebastian Bach and George Frideric Handel, wrote the initials S.D.G. on many of their compositions: Soli Deo Gloria.
We’ve examined Grace Alone, Faith Alone, Christ Alone and Scripture Alone. After studying these four, it follows, by necessity, that all glory rebounds to God Alone. The church at the time of the Reformation had developed a sacramental system by which people cooperated with grace to contribute to their justification. In other words, I have God, the church and myself to thank for my justification.
Paul told the Corinthians (1 C. 10:31) that whether we eat or drink, we do all for the glory of God. Many years ago, I had a pastor who took this to (in my mind) an illogical extreme. He stated, “If you’re going to be a sinner, be the best sinner you can be.” I’m not sure I agree, but his point was that whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability.
When giving his instructions for Christian households, Paul expands on this thought in his letter to the Colossians (3:16-23) by pointing out that we are really “working for the Lord.”
When we remember that we are really working for the Lord, Paul informs the Corinthians (2 C. 3:18) that we are reflecting God’s glory to those around us.
What is Soli Deo Gloria? A singing group, a nice motto? Or is it how we live and reflect God’s glory to our mission field?