Tuesday, January 29, 2013

thoughts from "Grace Liberates" by Dr. Michael Horton‏

Listen HERE to the full presentation by Dr. Michael Horton from the White Horse Inn.
People often spend the majority of the lives wanting to know the purpose for their lives. We want to know why we're all here and what we specifically are supposed to be doing.

The Westminster Shorter Catechism answers this question this way:
Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]

We think that knowing our purpose will finally satisfy us. We feel lonely or confused because we do not know what to do. However, what we discover is that we were meant for more
. This seems hopeful at first, until we realize that we do not glorify God in all things or enjoy Him more than anything else always. We may do this sometimes or in some ways, but not always and certainly not as much as He deserves.

Abraham was told that his purpose was to have a child and father many nations. This was good news after waiting a long time to know what God wanted specifically from him. However, Abraham and his wife were barren. They got anxious. They had a purpose in life and they were falling short. So they made a plan to have a child. Abraham slept with Sarah's servant and voila, Ishmael was born. This was sin. Abraham could not bear the weight of the purpose.

Abraham needed a promise. The promise was that God was going to do this. It was not about Abraham's ability to fulfill his purpose on his own, but God's mercy in giving and fulfilling a purpose for Abraham.

Abraham believed God and this was credited to him as righteousness. Not Abraham's ability to fulfill his purpose, but his trust in receiving God's gift of fulfilling his purpose for him.

Romans 4:23-25

23 Now it was credited to him was not written for Abraham alone, 24 but also for us. It will be credited to us who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.25 He was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

Yes you have a purpose. You were made to love God and your neighbor. Because we have a promise from God that in Christ we are forgiven our shortcomings, we can fulfill our purpose with joy. It is not our ability to be purposeful that makes us lovely in the sight of God, but our fragility in confessing our sin and leaning on His gracious gift on our behalf.

We have much for which to be thankful. May you believe the promise of God today and may it fuel your desire to fulfill your purpose: not because you have to do so in slavery to get back to God, but because reconciled to God you get to do so in freedom before Him.

This is not about you.
Not about your purpose.
Not about your failure.

This is about Jesus.

About His victory.
His love.
His gift.

If He has, you are.
If He is, you can.

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