The Purpose of God

August 1, 2006

Eph 1:3-10 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 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 him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

Throughout the ages God has had a great secret, a mystery. This mystery involved a great and wonderful thing which God had decided to do. He determined before the creation of the world that he would do it, at the appropriate time. When Jesus came, God in his wisdom and insight made that plan known to those who believed. The apostle Paul described this mystery as God’s will and God’s purpose. This was not something God had lightly decided, as though he would be subject to change his mind. It was His eternal plan, to be put into effect at just the right time.

God’s great mystery, his will, his purpose, and his plan, is and always has been to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. To the extent a person works toward that goal, he is working in accordance with God’s will, contributing to His plan and promoting His purpose. And to the extent that a person hinders that goal, he is opposing God’s plan and purpose, and is out of step with the will of God.

Of course God is not willing that any should be left out of this unity, but that all come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Tim 2:4) Yet Jesus made it clear that the unity of his followers would be key to the belief of the world. (John 17:23). So our current disunity stands in the way of God’s mysterious plan. But God’s purpose will prevail. There can be no room for doubt about that. Jesus prayed for the unity of the believers, and God will answer His Son’s prayer.

W. Carl Ketcherside commented on the above passage, saying:

Unity will come because it must come. The divine purpose cannot be frustrated, the divine will cannot be a failure, the divine pleasure cannot be mere fancy, the divine design cannot be a fallacy.

Unity is the purpose of our God. He will bring it about. It is our responsibility to act in step with His purpose. Let’s be sure we are doing that!

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