What is God's Purpose for Us?
We can trust God because of who he is. We know that he is sovereign, so he’s completely in control and able to carry out his plans. We know that he is infinite in wisdom, so he knows the best way to accomplish those plans. And we know that he is perfect in love- and the gospel is a primary way we see this, through his Son Jesus Christ, and his plan for our redemption. So what is his special purpose for us beyond that? What’s the reason for all of this? What does God want from us?
That’s what this next chapter (or series of blog posts) will be about. We will explore some of these hard questions. Let’s go back to Romans 8:28, where it says,
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good for those who are called according to his purpose.”
I think it’s well established that “good” does not necessarily mean easy, comfortable, or what we think we want. What does it mean to be “called according to his purpose?” Many times when that verse is quoted, it stops right there. But the answer to the question of his purpose immediately follows in verse 29,
“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.”
So his purpose is that we become more like Jesus. Why? I think a good place answer is found in Ephesians 1:11-12, which says,
“In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.”
So we are to become more like Jesus because it brings glory our Father God. Jesus, even though he is the Son of God, was not even concerned about his own will. He was about the glory of his Father.
“I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” John 5:30.
So if the will of the Father is to bring him glory, by being conformed into the image of his Son, Jesus Christ, how do we do that? We can look to the example of Jesus and we can look to his Word.
“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8
“And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Matthew 22:37-39
Those are tall orders. We already know that we can’t carry them out on our own. If we could, we wouldn’t need the gospel. But we don’t have worry because we have another promise,
“And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6
And once again, that brings us back to trust. We can trust in this promise. We can trust that what God is doing in our lives is serving his purpose for good, even when it’s a mystery, even when it’s really hard. His work in us is not yet complete, but someday it will be.
“When I stand before the Lamb of God and finally look into Jesus’s eyes, I want my life to have become a thing of beauty- not because I got it all right but because with all my heart I trusted God. “ Sheila Walsh- Beautiful Things Happen When a Woman Trusts God.
We are never alone in this life; we have a friend in Jesus. God loves you so much. He cares very much about having a relationship with you. So why is he all about His glory? Why is that his ultimate purpose? Isn’t that kind of egotistical? No, in this case it isn’t. I’ll write about why it isn’t, next time.