Tag Archive: god has plans


Saved From or Saved For?

As a believer in Christ we know we are saved from hell, our judgment is washed by the blood of Christ and our sins are forgiven correcting our relationship with God, but these things do not answer the question of purpose and the reason for our creation in the first place. These are the issues we tend to look at when we are reaching out to people and are understood but what are we saved for? Why does God care so much that none should parish (2 Peter 3.9)?

Our small group is currently doing a study called Operation Worldview which deals with exactly this, what are we saved for? God did not create because he needed us to do things for Him. Creation is about worship and glorifying God (Luke 19.40).  Romans 1.20-21 tells us “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him…” Creation reveals His glory so no one is with excuse. As God’s people our purpose is to reveal His glory by preaching the Gospel so others will see His glory and join us in glorifying the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Trinity?).

We are not simply saved from being judged by our own works but we are also saved for something we were created for, glorifying God. Until one is saved one cannot fulfill that purpose as we are separated eternally from God. This purpose is where our hope should lay knowing that God alone is worthy of our glory.

Will you fulfill your purpose?

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My purpose driven life

I do not need to read a book to find purpose. I do not need to sit and talk about it. I know my purpose and I know God’s will. Today in our consumer driven world we like to sell books, make CD’s, create podcasts, hold conferences, and spend a lot of time figuring things out which leaves little time for us to actually do what God created us to do. We try so hard to figure out God’s will when it is right before us.

 
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
 Ephesians 5.15-20
 
we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.
 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
1 Thess 5.14-18

I saw an advertisement for a toy company that made me think about having faith as a child in a new way. “A child’s natural instinct is to get involved, give anything a go, think creatively and ask questions.” What would happen if we lived our lives that way? Do kids choose to do things based on gifts and abilities tests or do they learn by trial and error? The church would be completely different if instead of taking tests and waiting to discern God’s will we stepped up and got involved, gave anything a go, thought creatively and asked questions.

According to Peter we are to be a holy priesthood. Being a part of the church and in God’s will has nothing to do with what I want. We are to proclaim Christ and offer our praise to him because without Christ nothing else matters. The will of God is not some program or the perfect fit in some ministry but to “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Israel was stuck in a cycle of disobedience, judgment, crying out to God, being delivered, and falling back into disobedience. Christ broke that cycle so that we could lean on his sacrifice and be apart of God’s story. The story above all stories, even above your own, is the story of His glory! What is your destiny in God’s story? Will you strive towards God’s will in your life?

Am I a Christian Deist?

Where is God? This is a question that I fight with. The role God plays in this world is not a simple one but it addresses a fundamental need we have in understanding it. Is God continually active in this world? Does he care about who I am? Does he care about the state of this world? These questions must be viewed in light of scripture.

Scripture says:

Murillo, Bartolomé Esteban Perez / Angel Gabriel’s Annunciation to Mary / 1655-1660 / Oil on canvas / source: Wikipedia

There was a man sent from God whose name was John.
John 1.6
 
Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.
John 3.14-15
 
We love because he first loved us.
1 John 4.19
 
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
John 14.26
 
But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.  
John 16.7
 
“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.”
Proverbs 16:9
 
Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?” 
God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.
Exodus 3.13-15
 
God has a plan for the future – Jeremiah 29.11Matthew 24.1-51
God is in control even when it doesn’t look like it –  Job
 
An advocate is active in pleading your case; they stand up for you and defend you. God’s story is filled with examples of how he has future plans for individuals as well as all creation. These are just a few direct verses that talk about God actively working in our world. The world he created despite man’s inability to live up to his greatness. Over the course of human existence we have proven our inability to raise ourselves up to God yet he continues to come down to us. Despite falling short of the glory of God, he cares for us so much that he comes to us, “and they will call him Immanuel” (Matthew 1.23). 

Today it is popular in Christian writing to look at fixing ourselves and how to overcome our shortcomings. More often than not they talk about how we must not judge others because it hurts them, or they look at how true faith is serving the less fortunate, or they examine how to have a better you. These ideas push Christ out and raise man up. They fail to look at the fact that “I once was lost but now am found” for it is only through his amazing grace that a wretch like me is saved.  They fail in seeing that Christ came to save the lost. Christian Deism is the belief that Christ is merely a good moral teacher and it rejects his divinity as well as the need for a saviour. Claiming to be Christian but relying on our own “goodness” contradicts the very nature of what it is to be a follower of Christ. Am I a Christian deist? In my wretchedness I am, however, it is not God who is distant but me. I often choose to reject his active presence in transforming my life and settle for his good teachings. It is only by God’s active saving work in this world that hope, faith, and love can be seen (Galatians 5.13-26).

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