Our Purpose as Christians
2 Timothy 1:9 “Who hath saved us, and called us with a holy calling not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began;”
The Purpose of God for us was set in motion before the world began. Before He created anything at the first; God saw us in Christ Jesus, according to His Purpose.
It is according to His Purpose and grace. His Purpose is His Will; and His grace is His unmerited favor of Power to bring His Will to pass.
Ephesians 2:8-10 ” For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
Not of works, lest any man should boast.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.”
This is written to Christians, telling them how they were saved.
It was by the power of grace, not anything they did to deserve it.
It was through faith, a gift given them by the Holy Spirit.
And they are “created in Christ Jesus”; given new birth and a new nature.
So created, not to stand by and watch; but to take part in His Purpose: those good works we are to walk in.
We are so created as a “workmanship”; which is a molded image. We are to be molded into the image of Christ. (Remember the word Christian means: Little Christ)
And how are we to do this?
By using the means and provision God has given.
That is what “ordained” means.
It means that all the provision for our walk with Him, is there in Him.
We just have to use it. To will with Him.
Let us talk, for a moment, about the things which hinder His Purpose.
(If you ask, How can anything hinder God’s Purpose? I answer, that as He gives us choices, He is allowing His Purpose to be fulfilled or hindered by us. It is His way of teaching us, and training us. He knows all things, and makes arrangements for it. His Will, will be done; but He wants it to be done through us, so He can bless us.)
The greatest hinderance to God’s Will, is that we do not go on with Him as we should.
Our walk with Christ is progressive:
We are babes in Christ, being seen to, fed with the milk of His Word, so we can begin to crawl and then walk with Him.
We come to the place of walking; and often like mules, stop and stand and bray. Having a fit about some part of His Will.
He must, and will correct us: sometimes with rebukes.
Rebukes are words which awaken us to His claims on us. Showing us where we should be, and how to get there. (Hebrews 12:5)
Sometimes He must chasten us. This is serious; He does not do this lightly. (1 John 5:16)
But He will not empower rebels with His Spirit. That would be joining our rebellion against Himself. But what He does, He does because He loves us. As a parent corrects a child, for their good, so God corrects us.
The answer to this is to will to deny yourself, pick up your cross, and follow Him. (Matthew 16:24)
We preach on this often; because it is the backbone of progress. We will deny ourselves, and follow Him.
Or we will put up with ourselves, and lose another opportunity to please our Lord.
It is a choice the Lord gives us: for it is “if” any man will.
Those that love Me, Jesus said, keep My commandments.
John 14:21 “He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.”
When we truly want His Will and have denied ourselves, daily; we come to the place where we no longer resist His Will in anything.
(Resist is a good term. Do you instantly want to “back up” every time you hear about what you should be doing? )
Well, we can come to the place, in our experience, that we don’t resist. It is not instant obedience, but it is final obedience. We will obey.
But the crowning glory, in this life, is to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Ephesians 5:17-18 “Wherefore be not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit.”
When we are filled with the Spirit of God (and this only happens as we are emptied of the fullness of self); then the blessed influence of His life, love, peace, joy, and patience, is placed within us. And can be seen through us.
We are expressions of His life, and Purpose. That Purpose He purposed for us before the world began.
This is in Christ, for us.
Imagine a life full of the Lord’s light, and joy.
Better yet, don’t imagine it. Get it. If you are in Christ Jesus, born again; then His Purpose for you is to be filled with all the fullness of God. Filled to your capacity in Him.
Ephesians 3:16-19 “That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye being rooted and grounded in love,
May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.”
We never truly know the love of Christ, the way He wants us to, until we walk along with Him: His hand for our strength, His Word for our help, His Spirit shining in us for comfort, and joy.
His Purpose for us, in Christ, is to walk with Him, into those good works He has ordained us for.
Will we go on with Him?