For some of us the idea of God’s glory is very distant and impersonal. It was for me for many years. I can remember back to my early walk with Christ and how nobody really told me of the significance of living a life to glorify God. Instead I wrongly associated mere actions and ministries as the ultimate purpose of my life. Although service to God in obedience to His Word is very crucial, is it really the ultimate purpose for our existence? I want to just quickly look at a few aspects of this and how it relates to every day living as believers. My hope is that God will open the eyes of His bride to see life and all of its ups and downs for what He intended them for. I want to bring to the table not a new thought but simply something that God has so graciously allowed me to see and is transforming my life with its truth.
Colossians 1:16 “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.”
By Him all things were created–
Isn’t this a foundational belief for Christians? I’ve yet to meet a brother or sister in Christ, who does not believe God is the Creator of all things. In fact most non believers attribute the universe we see to a supreme power outside of this realm. The problem though is not just believing that God created the Earth and the splendor of the universe, but that His perfect handiwork went into the creation of the unseen realms and creatures too.
“…in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities”
To believe that God created all is to believe that all things come with a purpose from God Himself. Consider the angels who fell with Lucifer when pride was found in him. Do you see this as a mistake for God to fix, or as a necessary piece of the puzzle, always intended by God to fulfill His purposes? Even the Pharaoh in the days of Israel’s captivity was raised up for the very purpose of displaying the glory and power of God in the redemption of His people. “For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.’ ” (Romans 9:17) According to Romans, God is also the great Potter and we are the clay to be molded into what He sees fit. It is a foolish thing to ask God, of ourselves or anyone else, “why did you make me/them this way?” What right does the clay have to say how it should be fashioned? None. In this portion of Colossians we are made aware of an important doctrine, the doctrine of God’s sovereignty and how He rules over the affairs of man, beast, and Angel. The invisible demonic powers in the world today fit perfectly within the plan of God to Glorify Himself. It is not an easy thing to believe and neither should it be. If it were easy to say that the murders, violence and all the darkness in this world are allowed in order for us to see His glory magnified on the Earth, then I might question what you know about God’s compassion for sinners. Though it is not easy, it is necessary to believe if we are to fully know God.
So what is the purpose of evil? Why did God allow Satan to rebel and now rule as the Prince of the power of the air? What was the reason for letting the Serpent into the garden to deceive Eve? Can I suggest that it is answered with one word, Glory? For what would we know of the Glory of God and His nature of Grace? We know today the sweetness of redemption only because of the depths of the pit we were pulled from. The purpose of death was that it might be conquered by Christ on Calvary and that we might be victorious over it through faith in Christ. The purpose if sin and all of its sting was that it may be covered by the innocent blood of Jesus and forgotten forever for those who trust Him. The purpose of pain and suffering in this life is so that the painless eternity ahead for the child of God would be that much sweeter. Hebrews 2:10 says “For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.” So in the plan of God, suffering is necessary to display His ultimate glory.
We all suffer in various ways and the extent that some suffer in this world is not to be taken lightly. Seeing God’s glory and that all things are for His glory is only done by faith. We must believe Him at His Word. If Joseph, who in the beginning of His life as a young man had to endure deceit, attempted murder, abandonment, imprisonment and scandal before coming to a place of glory, and then was able to say “what man intended for evil, God intended for good”, what must we say about our lives? The Scripture does not say that God picked up the pieces of Joseph’s life and put them back together but shows us that the whole life of Joseph was with intention. Now consider the greatest example of all: The sinless Son of God betrayed, beaten, spat upon and flogged, mocked and hung on a cross for all to see His shame. This was all done by the hands of His very own creation. This was an act of all out murder and hatred, but was it not absolutely necessary? Without this we would be utterly lost and hopeless.
“…all things were created through him and for him.”
So with the above conversation in mind let us consider how to apply these truths. If all things were created by Him and for Him, then you can be sure that that includes you. We must learn to agree with God in His purpose for all that He created. Every breath you breathe is in His hands and is intended for His good plan. Do not be complacent with this knowledge and think “then why does anything matter?” for that would be a grave mistake. Let’s remember that God in His sovereignty has ordained good works that we should walk in them. This is a call to action on our part. A call to see everything we do as intended by God to bring Him glory and in that, to fulfill our joy. Learn to see your marriage in a new light, your children and how you teach them, your job and how you perform it, your church and how you serve it and even your hobbies as for Him. Your pain, your tears and your suffering to whatever degree, are for Him, and His grace is sufficient for these things. Just as the moon has a humble purpose of reflecting a light that is not its own, let us be content in every season, reflecting the light and the glory of Christ to the world around us.