God's Purpose; Our Purpose

Last time, we ended hinting at the difference between having a purpose and a use. This time, we will expand on what it means to have a purpose. Yes, God Himself does NOT need a purpose to exist. He "chose" to give Himself one!

Life

The previous TFB post asks the age old question:

Q: What is the meaning of life?

There have been many, many books written and movies/TV shows produced to address this question. Most do so in a serious manner. Others do so in humorous ways. Through the previous TFB post, we proposed the true answer to the question.

A: To have a purpose!

Let's review how Light[Ohr] gives life. And, how life gives purpose.

Days of Creation:

Day 1:
The world was spoken into existence by God[hayah]
The Word became Light[Ohr]
Day 2:
The waters above were separated from the waters below
Created the expanse in between
Day 3:
The land became directly exposed to the Light[Ohr]
The land produced vegetation (grass, flowers, trees, etc.)
Day 4:
The luminaries[ma'ohr] (Sun, Moon, stars)
Day 5 & 6:
The animals of the sea, air, and land
Man, Adam & Eve
Day 7:
Creation completed
God rested
Genesis 1:26 (ESV)
Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. …

On Day 3 of Creation, God brought the land out from under the waters below into the light[ohr]. God gave the land a purpose (Genesis 1:11). "Let the earth sprout vegetation" Only God's Light[Ohr] shown upon the land (earth). Thus, land produced good fruit.

The Sun, Moon, and stars (the luminaries — ma'ohr) were not created until Day 4 of Creation. So, it was God's Light that initially caused the plants to grow, not the light from the Sun we now see in the Sky.

On Day 5 & 6 of creation, God created the animals of the air, sea, and land. God purposed the animals to be fruitful and multiply after their own kind (Genesis 1:22).

On Day 6 of Creation, God created Man (Adam & Eve) and gave Adam dominion over the earth. He formed Man from the dust of the ground, the land. God breathed life into Man's nostrils. Then, God gave man a purpose. More about our purpose later.

God's Purpose

First of all, God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) is complete in Himself. Read the section The Trinity. In Unity: The Third Strand, read a very description of the concept. He does not need a reason to exist. He just does. So, what purpose did God give Himself? He created a free-willed people.

God foreknew that He would open a "can of worms" once He created Man. So, even then, He had a plan to put the worms back into the 'can' once and for all. Well, two cans, actually, with Him[New Heaven & Earth] or without Him[Sheol]. Only an all-seeing, all-knowing, and all-powerful God is able accomplish such a task.

Angels are not truly free-will beings because they were created by God to live in His direct presence in Heaven. Once an angel rejects God, that's it. No redemption is possible because they have resided in His direct presence and saw Him in His full glory. Despite that, one-third of the angels chose to follow Lucifer when he rebelled against God. These fallen angels will eventually live in Sheol/Hell with satan for an eternity.

Nugget: Fallen angels are not the same as demons. Mostly before the Great Flood in Noah's time, fallen angels mated with human women which produced only male children (Genesis 6:1–4). Thease 'sons' are called Nephilim. The giant Goliath and his four brothers were likely to have been Nephilims. Nephilims are also the Titans in Greek mythology. When Nephilims die, their souls become what we call demons.

God's Redemption Plan

Adam's fall to Mt. Sinai
  • Have Faith that the Messiah is coming.
  • Try to do what is right.
  • Give animal sacrifices to cover sins.
Mt. Sinai to Resurrection
  • Have Faith that the Messiah is coming.
  • Obey the Laws of the Torah.
  • Try to do what is right.
  • Give animal sacrifices to the priests for the covering of Man's sins.
  • Yearly atonement offered by the High Priest.
Resurrection to Rapture[1] of the Ecclesia[2]
  • Have Faith the Messiah has come.
  • Accept Jesus Christ/Yeshua as the only begotten Son of God.
  • Ask for forgiveness of all sins.
The Tribulation (Seven Years)
  • Give those left behind hope and a second chance.
  • Have Faith that the Messiah has come.
  • Refuse the Mark of the Beast.
Millennium Reign (1,000 Years)
A Third Covenant???

[1]Rapture: Many folks balk at the use of the word 'Rapture'. In this case, it simply an easy way to refer to the gathering of those alive or dead, who, has accepted Yeshua/Christ into their hearts to be taken into Heaven for seven years.

[2]Ecclesia: The word 'Church' has too many bad connotations these days and can cause confusion. So, we prefer to use the word 'Ecclesia' which is the Greek word to describe the First Century 'church'. Ecclesia includes Gentile Christians and Messianic Jews. In God's eyes, there is no difference. Both groups have accepted His only begotten Son into their hearts. So, essentially, they should be considered as one group, not two. The only difference between the two is in the eyes of Man.

God Will Do It

Isaiah 46:8–10,11b (ESV)
"Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors,
remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other;
I am God, and there is none like me,
declaring the end from the beginning
and from ancient times things not yet done,
saying, 'My counsel shall stand,
and I will accomplish all my purpose,'

I have spoken, and I will bring it to pass;
I have purposed, and I will do it.

Note: God said that He will accomplish His "purpose" (singular) instead of the plural "purposes". Providing a redemption plan is the purpose He gave Himself.

God is past, present, and future.

Time is actually a blessing from God. God is timeless. He knows our past, present, and future, not only collectively but also individually. God created time because he knew our minds could not handle the totality of our lives all at once and at every moment. So, we live in the Present, remember much of our Past, and are only given tiny glimpses of our Future. This is for our protection.

Exodus 3:14 (KJV)
And God said unto Moses, I AM[Hayah] THAT[Asher] I AM[Hayah]: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM[Hayah] hath sent me unto you.
Exodus 3:14 (CJB)
God said to Moshe, "Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh [I am/will be what I am/will be]," and added, "Here is what to say to the people of Isra'el: 'Ehyeh [I Am or I Will Be] has sent me to you.'"

Nugget: The Hebrew word for 'I AM' is hayah [h1961]. This is the same word translated as the first 'was' in Genesis 1:2. "And the earth was[hayah]…"

Revelation 1:8 (ESV)
"I am the Alpha and the Omega,"
says the Lord God,
who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty."

The last line in the verse above has the same meaning as "I AM THAT I AM" in Exodus 3:14. Once again, God repeats himself.

Revelation 22:13 (ESV)
I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the first and the last,
the beginning and the end."

Speaking of the past, present, and future, here is a very brief timeline given to us in the Holy Bible:

Very brief Biblical timeline

Old Testament

  • God creates a perfect Heaven and Earth
  • God gives Man dominion over the world
  • Man falls; Satan takes control of the world
  • God floods the whole world; saves Noah & Family (8 people total)
  • Babel is destroyed; languages confounded; Mankind dispersed
  • Hebrews formed through Abraham, Isaac, Jacob
  • God gives Moses the Law; God separates out the Levites
  • King David from Judah is King; Solomon builds first Temple
  • Good & evil kings; Israel splits; kingdoms fall

New Testament

  • Jesus is born, teaches, dies, and is resurrected
  • Great Commission; Holy Spirit comes; we are saved by grace
  • Church taken up in the Rapture; Unbelievers left behind
  • Burma Seat Judgment; Marriage Supper of the Lamb
  • Tribulation; Anti-Christ appears
  • Armageddon; Day of the Lord
  • Satan bound; Millennium Reign; Jesus rules with iron rod
  • Satan released; Last battle; White Throne Judgment
  • New Heaven; New Earth; New Jerusalem

Our Purpose

Matthew 5:14–16 (ESV)
"You are the light of the world.
A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.
Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket,
but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house.
In the same way, let your light shine before others,
so that they may see your good works and
give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Our purpose is to be the light to a dark world. However, we do not possess our own light. Instead, the Ohr (Light of the World) shines through us.

We are invited!

The terms "predestined" and "called" have caused many arguments amongst Christians. And, then add in the phrase "God's elect" into that confusion. We hope to untangle this in this post.

Below are two very controversial groups of verses. We have highlighted the words in question.

Romans 8:28–30 (NIV)
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,
who have been called according to his purpose.
For those God foreknew he also predestined
to be conformed to the likeness of his Son,
that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
And those he predestined, he also called;
those he called, he also justified;
those he justified, he also glorified.
Ephesians 1:3–6 (ESV)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places,
even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy and blameless before him.
In love he predestined us for adoption to himself
as sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will,
to the praise of his glorious grace,
with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.

Battle words:

  • called
  • chose, chosen, elect
  • foreknew
  • predestined, predetermined

Why do we call these "battle words"? Because, these word have probably caused more church division and infighting than any others. Let us take a moment and look at them in their proper context.

Foreknew & predestination: As stated above, God is timeless. In other words, he already knows everything we have done, are doing, and will do, with one exception to be explained later. So, yes, He foreknew every action we will ever do. The following is the best explaination we have come across:

From AMG Complete Word Study—New Testament under G4309:

In Ro 8:29–30, predestination is used of God's actions in eternally decreeing both the objects and goal of His plan of salvation. Proorízō has a personal obj., the pl. relative pron. hoús, whom. This relative pron. refers to those previously mentioned as those whom God foreknew (proégnō [g4267]).

The translation is, "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate." The objects of predestination are those whom He foreknew. Predestination does not involve a predetermined plan only but also includes the individuals for whom the plan is devised.

The goal of predestination is expressed in the phrase, "to be conformed to the image of his Son."

Who are those "to be conformed to the image of His Son"? Initially, Adam & Eve and all of their decendents. Genesis 1:26 states, "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness:" One aspect of God is He is holy. Likewise, we were meant to be holy. Because of Adam's fall, holiness is one thing we cannot do on our own. The only way to become holy is through His Son, Jesus/Yeshua.

John 14:6 (KJV)
Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Called: Called here more specifically means that we are invited to a wedding. We are collectively known as the Bride of Christ, Jesus is the Groom. It is our choice to except the invitation or not.

So, by accepting Jesus as your Personal Lord and Savior, asking for the forgiveness of your Sin, and allowing the Holy Spirit into your life, you are made 'holy' in the eyes of God the Father through the innocent blood Jesus shed on the Cross at Calvary for us.

Chosen & elect: We are all called in the sense of being invited to a wedding, not just as a guest but to be the bride. Everyone is called or invited to make the above confession. Those who accepted the call/invitation are the ones referred to as the chosen or elect simply because of that choice made to follow The Way of Jesus Christ/Yeshua.

To what purpose? This is the crux of the issue. Leaders have focused on the "who" and not the "why" and "what". Below are the same afore verses but with the parts we should be focusing upon are highlighted.

Romans 8:28–30 (NIV)
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,
who have been called[invited] according to his purpose.
For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son,
that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
And those he predestined, he also called;
those he called, he also justified;
those he justified, he also glorified.
Ephesians 1:3–6 (ESV)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places,
even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy and blameless before him.
In love he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will,
to the praise of his glorious grace,
with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.

In the past, the focus has been on the "who is chosen" instead of the blessings bestowed upon "those who chose". It is this latter part we should focus upon. For we, the Body of Christ, have accepted the invitation.

Why did God create us?

1 John 1:3 (ESV)
… and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.

Did God need something to do? In a sense, the answer is 'No'. Think of a pond with no inlet or outlet with the purest water that neither evaporates nor stagnates due to decay. It is and will always be a pond of the purest & cleanest water.

But, what use is there for a pond of the purest & cleanest water if the are no animals to drink from it, no plants to draw upon it? Having animals and plants does not change what the pond is. But, having animals and plants drinking from it gives the pond a purpose.

God created us so that we can fellowship with him. He created this vast universe so that we can bask in his glory. Many folks think us Christians are too presumptuous to think that the only forms of life in this entire universe only exists on this 'insignificant rock' in a star system near the edge of the Milky Way galaxy. The reality is He loves us more than we can possibly imagine.

Acts 2 Church:

  • Worship: We are to worship Him who created us.
  • Serve: We are to produce good fruit for His Glory.
  • Grow: We are to grow in knowledge of Him.
  • Connect: We are to share the burden of our brothers and sisters.
  • Go: We are to reach out to our neighbors, whether friend or foe, and love them like we love ourselves.

Lucifer's/satan's Purpose

Many folks wonder what is satan's role in the scheme of things? Our description of satan's "purpose" is split into two subsections: pre and post fall. First, we must explain why God created him. What was his true role in heaven?

Lucifer (Pre-Fall)

God created an angel named Lucifer: Hebrew name is "helel" means "to shine" or "to bear light". He reflected the magnificent majesty of God's radiance.

  1. He was a cherub
  2. Overseer of the Garden of God
  3. Wisest amongst the Angels
  4. Most glorious of all the angels
  5. Worship (song) leader

Lucifer's wings "covered" the place where God's glory was manifested in His heavenly temple. Same as the cherubim in the tabernacle of Moses covered the mercy seat and the place where the visible glory of God appeared (Exodus 37:9).

Satan (Post-fall)

What about satan? What is his "purpose"? I put quotes around the word purpose because of the afore mentioned text associates purpose with light and life. While, satan is associated with darkness and death. So, a better question would be: What are his desires?

Five sinful desires of Lucifer (Isaiah 14:13–14):

  1. I will ascend into heaven.
  2. I will exalt my throne above the stars of God.
  3. I will also sit on the mount of the congregation.
  4. I will ascend above the heights of the clouds.
  5. I will be like the Most High.
Isaiah 14:15 (NASB)
"Nevertheless you will be thrust down to Sheol,
To the recesses of the pit.

As a penalty for Lucifer's rebellion, God banished him from the Third Heaven. Once banished, Lucifer established his throne in the Second Heaven (Ezekiel 28:12–14). This Second Heaven is the atmosphere and space surrounding Earth.

Satan's Goals

  1. To steal souls from receiving Eternal Life.
  2. To kill those who love the LORD.
  3. To destroy our reputation as a whole and individually.
John 10:10 (KJV)
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy:
  I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
John 16:21–22 (MSG)
"When a woman gives birth, she has a hard time, there's no getting around it. But when the baby is born, there is joy in the birth. This new life in the world wipes out memory of the pain. The sadness you have right now is similar to that pain, but the coming joy is also similar. When I see you again, you'll be full of joy, and it will be a joy no one can rob from you.

Foremost remember, satan will do any and everything in his limited power to devert us from fulfilling our purpose. But, our God Almighty will NOT be deterred from completing what He has promised.

God has spoken

Genesis 1:1–2 (KJV)
1In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
2And the earth was[hayah] without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

We believe Genesis 1:1 simply states what God did. And, the rest of Genesis 1 explains how God did it. No gap theory, no pre-Adamite world. As mentioned in the previous blog post, we defined the meaning of the word 'was' in Genesis 1:2 as "was spoken into existance by God[The Word]". Then, the Word became Light. And, the Light became Flesh.

Nugget: Did Jesus sweating drops of blood in the Garden of Gethsemane represent the cleansing of the Garden of Eden? In turn, could that had been the very spot of ground that Adam stood upon when he bit into the forbidden fruit? Thus, the true purpose of him sweating blood? Just a thought…

Isaiah 25:8 (ESV)
He will swallow up death forever;
  and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces,
  and the reproach of his people
he will take away from all the earth,
  for the LORD has spoken.
The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears
  from all faces;
he will remove his people's disgrace
  from all the earth.
The LORD has spoken.

What was that last line? "The LORD has spoken."

Revelation 21:6 (ESV)
New Heaven and New Earth
And he said to me, "It is done!
I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the beginning and the end.

God said:

  • Let us make man in our image (OT: Genesis 1:26)
    [But, Man fell (OT: Genesis 3:6)]
  • I AM THAT I AM (OT: Exodus 3:14)
    [I am/will be what I am/will be]
  • I will do it! (OT: Isaiah 46:11)
  • It is finished! (NT: John 19:20)
  • It is done! (NT: Revelation 21:6)

What was that?
"It is done!"
What? I can't hear you.
"It… is… done!"
What? I still can't hear you.
"IT… IS… DONE!"

1 Corinthians 13:12 (MSG)
We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

Let's conclude with the two controversial verses from before. But, this time from The Message.

Ephesians 1:3–6 (MSG)
How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He's the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth's foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son.
Romans 8:29–30 (MSG)
God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son. The Son stands first in the line of humanity he restored. We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in him. After God made that decision of what his children should be like, he followed it up by calling people by name. After he called them by name, he set them on a solid basis with himself. And then, after getting them established, he stayed with them to the end, gloriously completing what he had begun.

Until next time,
שָׁלוֹם (Shalom!)