Wednesday, June 14, 2006

3. God’s Will and Purpose

.... The ultimate purpose of God in creation, salvation, and in all other matters, is best understood from His own perspective – and for us, this is most easily comprehended from the standpoint of the Day of Judgment. For in every way God will be vindicated on this occasion, as foretold by the prophet Isaiah:

.... "The lofty looks of man shall be humbled, and the haughtiness of men shall be bowed down, and the LORD alone shall be exalted on that day."

(Isaiah 2:11)

.... * Simply stated, God’s motivation in creation, and in all subsequent acts, was that He desired a day in which He alone would be exalted. This would be a day that counted for all days, when everything would be reviewed, that God might be glorified in relation to everything that has ever been. Aptly it is called ‘the Day of the Lord’. So He orders the events of history with the aim of glorifying Himself in the final reckoning of that Day.
.... Thus, the eternal purpose of God in saving mankind may also be clearly seen from this perspective. For we are told that the Father has:

" . . . committed them all to disobedience that He might have mercy on all."

(Rom 11:32)

". . . that no flesh should glory in His presence."

(1 Cor 1:29)

.... In other words, God has confined the events of our lives in such a way that we cannot prevail in the judgment without Him. This demonstrates our need for Him, which allows Him to be glorified in the mercy He shows in saving us, guiding us, providing for us, etc. Also, on our side of the equation, our dependence on Him leaves us no room to boast (which would have competed for this glory) so it further serves this end. And all of this has been done:

.... " . . . according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory."

(Eph 1:11-12)

.... God has decided that when all is said and done, it will be to the praise of His glory, that He alone may be exalted. This will be accomplished through Jesus Christ His Son, as He orders the progress of our lives with this ultimate intention in mind. Christ is the only mediator between God and man, and He guarantees each of us to the other (1 Tim 2:5). Here the preeminent role of Christ is revealed as filling all in all, and God in Him. We will discuss this further in the next section.

.... * (This perspective may actually be oversimplified, but it is a useful, truthful guide in every practical way since it is a perspective we can more easily understand. And of course, in the end, it will be fully vindicated as true).


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