Since my last writings I have been deep instudy of the things of God and ultimately of His Word. I have been ponderingone question over and over again for a long time now. The question stems itselfmainly from Psalm 42 and a portion of Romans 8. King David wrote, “As the deer pants for the water brooks, so my soulpants for you O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God; when shall Icome and appear before God?” (Psalm 42:1-2)
Paul echoes David’s longing for God when hewrote in his letter to the Romans, “For we know that the whole creation groansand suffers the pains of childbirth together until now. And not only this, butalso we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselvesgroan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemptionof our body”. (Romans 8:22-23)
So myquestion has been why don’t we? Why don’t we long for God or even groan for Himin a culture that tells us we need to have big churches, with happy people wholove God inside the 4 walls of a building we call Church, but when we leavethose 4 walls, that same culture doesn’t want to be bothered with talk ofreligion? It doesn’t seem to me that we as a whole people, the body of God, cangrasp how severe the issue is. We don’t seem to understand that the Glory ofGod and our eternal joy or eternal separation is on the line here. Even inmyself I find that I can’t get how vast the problem or how deep the depravityof human kind.
Onlyone thing seems to be the answer. The only solution I can see is that if we getback onto a correct thinking of the Glory of God and find out what our fullpurpose in Him really is. Is it missions, evangelizing, or discipleship? I do not believe that those things in and ofthemselves are the purpose of mankind or even God’s calling to us. I thinkthose callings stem from a higher calling in God. Jonathan Edwards gives us alittle insight into the purposes of God in creating man. He tells us, “Firstthat the glory of God might be magnified in theuniverse, and, second, that Christ’s ransomed people from all times and allnations would rejoice in God above all things.”(Piper 1998)
I believe that fits perfectly into thepurposes of God for lives. When Christ’ Glory becomes our focal point, all thecalling and work of the Church are played out in perfect unison. When we seekthe Glory of Christ worship happens, missions happen, discipleship begins totake place, people begin to see Christ in us and are pulled by the Holy Spirittowards Him. When Christ becomes first, we become second. Edwards goes on tosay, “The
end of the creation is that the creation might glorify [God]. Now whatis glorifying God, but a rejoicing at that glory he has displayed? Thehappiness of the creature consists in rejoicing in God, by which also God ismagnified and exalted.” (Piper 1998)
Paul repeats this idea of Gods glory in hisletter to the Corinthians. “Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1Cor. 10:13). Everything we do is for the Glory of God. Whether it be serving,worshipping or playing. We do everything for the Glory of God. So what doesthis all have to do with creation groaning and our longing for God? Much inevery way I think. I believe that when we get back to the Glory of God and lesson ourselves and what we can do for His kingdom, we will discover that HisGlory brings us infinitely more joy then we could have, left to our owndevices. When we Glorify God with a thankful heart we find ourselves in themidst of God’s plan for our lives. When we come before God and know that hisGlory is our hearts desire, we find that we are overjoyed to have Him as oureternal rock and fortress.
Piper, J. (1998). God’s Passion For His Glory. Good NewsPublishers.