Children are expected to honor their father and mother (Deut. 5:16). Servants must honor their master (Mal. 1:6). Christians are expected to honor God and Christ, His Son (John 5:23). “Honor and majesty are before Him…” (1 Chron. 16:27).
We honor God by being respectful of His person and His name. We must not take His name in vain (Ex. 20:7). We honor God by cheerfully obeying His divine will (Ex. 19:5). We honor God by treating with solemn care, His church, His Word, and His standards of righteousness. We honor Him when we lead our family and our neighbors to obey and serve Him. Jesus said, “…If any man serve Me, him will the father honor” (John 12:26).
We honor God when we worship as He has directed. He rebuked the Hebrews, saying “Neither hast (thou) honored Me with your sacrifices…” (Is. 43:23). Solomon taught his sons to “Honor Jehovah with thy substance, and with the first-fruits of all thine increase” (Prov. 3:9). We honor God when we sing His praises. “Sing forth the honor of His name…” (Ps. 66:2 KJV). “My mouth shall be filled with Thy praise, and with Thy honor all the day” (Ps. 71:8). Like the heavenly host we should sing, “Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power: for Thou didst create all things…” (Rev. 4:11). We should honor Jehovah by conducting ourselves in a way that honors Him. Thus Paul says, “If a man therefore purge himself from these (worldly, sinful deeds), he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified and fit for the master’s use…” (2 Tim. 2:21).
God asked the Hebrews of Malachi’s day, “A son honoreth his father, and a servant his master: if I am a father, where is Mine honor? And if I am a master, where is My fear, saith Jehovah…” (Mal. 1:6). God wants the honor we pay Him to be genuine and sincere. “…Forasmuch as this people draw nigh unto Me, and with their mouth and with their lips do honor Me, but have removed their heart far from Me…” (Is. 29:13).
When God created man, He “made him but little lower than God, and crowned him with glory and honor” (Ps. 8:5). When we honor God, He will honor us. “…Jehovah saith… for them that honor Me, I will honor, and they that despise Me shall be lightly esteemed” (1 Sam. 2:30). “A man’s pride shall bring him low; But he that is of a lowly spirit shall obtain honor” (Prov. 29:23). He want us to live an honorable life and respect others who do the same. Our Lord wants us to “honor them that fear Jehovah” (Ps. 15:4).
How do we think God views those who discount His word saying, “He has not given us a pattern to follow,” when the Scripture plainly tells us to “hold the pattern of sound words” from the apostle (2 Tim. 1:13). What of those who say Christ has no law for us, only a love letter such as our mother might write, when Paul tells us to fulfill the law of Christ (Gal. 6:2) and James speaks of the “perfect law of liberty” that we should obey (James 1:25)?
How would God judge those who seek to turn the sacred memorial of Christ’s death into a jolly fellowship meal (1 Cor. 11:23-29)? What would He say to those who refuse to accept His prohibition on women filling leadership roles in the assemblies of the church (1 Cor. 14:33-34; 1 Tim. 2:11-12)?
What would God think of those who reject His instruction to sing and make melody with their hearts (Eph. 5:19) and, without Christ’s authority, play their man-made musical instruments when they praise God?
Do you think God would honor those who sow discord among His people, for whom Christ died? Solomon tells us God hates those who do this (Prov. 6:16-19).
If you hope to be honored by Jehovah, remember that He only “honors them that honor Him. Those who despise Him, He will lightly esteem” (1 Sam. 2:30).