When we start to understand God’s purposes we are better able to cooperate with him. So what is God’s purpose for creation? What are; the purposes of the Bible; the purposes of faith; our purpose; the Devil’s purpose; Jesus’ purpose; the purpose of believer gatherings; the purpose of a Pastor?
God’s and our purpose
MSG Acts 17;26-27 Starting from scratch, he made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living 27 so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find him. He doesn’t play hide-and-seek with us. He’s not remote; he’s near. 28 We live and move in him, can’t get away from him! One of your poets said it well: ‘We’re the God-created.’
Col 1;15-17, ‘Look at Jesus and see God,’ 15 We look at this Son and see the God who cannot be seen. We look at this Son and see God’s original purpose in everything created. 16 For everything, absolutely everything, above and below, visible and invisible, rank after rank after rank of angels-everything got started in him and finds its purpose in him. 17 He was there before any of it came into existence and holds it all together right up to this moment.
This led me to ask what is the purpose of faith?
Hebrews 1-3 & 11-16 Faith is how we Please God
Hebrews 4;1-3 We need Faith to claim the promises
1 Peter 1;5-8 Our Faith, the Evidence of God’s victory
1 Peter 5;8-10 Faith sustains us through the enemies attacks
Eph 6;16 The shield of faith protects us from the devil’s arrows
2 Tim 3;16-17 16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.
The Bible, the word is;
1 Luke 6;48-49 The foundation for our lives
2. Luke 20;23-32 Jesus turns us over to God’s Word – to transform us and to give us everything we need
3. Psalm 119;92-112 Great Wisdom when followed
4. Is 53;1-12 it’s purpose, to lead us into a full joy filled life.
5. John 17;13-26 -To make the world holy by spreading the Word
6. Heb 6; 1-20 gives us a lifeline, the word, right into God & Jesus’ presence
7. Heb4;1-16 The Word is as sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, laying us open to listen and obey & walk right up to Jesus accepting his generous mercy, & help.
John 8;44-48 For you are the children of your father the devil, and you love to do the evil things he does. He was a murderer from the beginning. He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 So when I tell the truth, you just naturally don’t believe me!
NLT Act 13;9-10Saul, also known as Paul, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and he looked the sorcerer in the eye. 10 Then he said, “You son of the devil , full of every sort of deceit and fraud, and enemy of all that is good! Will you never stop perverting the true ways of the Lord?
NLT1 Peter 5;8-9. 8 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy , the devil . He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. 9 Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.
NIV John 10;10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
To fulfill scripture
To save us from sin
To help us- our example
To do God’s will
To become our high priest – establish the new covenant
To make us ready – transforming us into his image
Our friend & guide
To pray for us
To free us from law domination
To help us crucifying everything connected with getting my own way – freeing us from the selfishness syndrome.
NIV1 Cor 14;26-40 ‘Orderly Worship’ 26 What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together, everyone has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. All of these must be done for the strengthening of the church. 27 If anyone speaks in a tongue, two – or at the most three – should speak, one at a time, and someone must interpret. 28 If there is no interpreter, the speaker should keep quiet in the church and speak to himself and God. 29 Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said. 30 And if a revelation comes to someone who is sitting down, the first speaker should stop. 31 For you can all prophesy in turn so that everyone may be instructed and encouraged. 32 The spirits of prophets are subject to the control of prophets. 33 For God is not a God of disorder but of peace. As in all the congregations of the saints, 34 women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. 35 If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. 36 Did the word of God originate with you? Or are you the only people it has reached? 37 If anybody thinks he is a prophet or spiritually gifted, let him acknowledge that what I am writing to you is the Lord’s command. 38 If he ignores this, he himself will be ignored. 39 Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues. 40 But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way. [MSG says ‘in harmony’]
Pastors – our Shepard’s Roles;
Guiding & keeping us from wandering off, getting us back on track –
Protecting us from predators, Taking us to a place [& training us so we can prosper
2 Timothy 4:2 – NKJV “Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.”
Ezekiel 34:2,4 – NKJV “Thus says the Lord God to the shepherds: ‘Woe to the shepherds of Israel who feed themselves! Should not the shepherds feed the flocks?'” …4″The weak you have not strengthened, nor have you healed those who were sick, nor bound up the broken, nor brought back what was driven away, nor sought what was lost; but with force and cruelty you have ruled them.”
Hebrews 13:17 – NKJV “Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account.”.
NLT Heb 13;17 Obey your spiritual leaders, and do what they say. Their work is to watch over your souls, and they are accountable to God. Give them reason to do this with joy and not with sorrow. That would certainly not be for your benefit.
Blind leading blind
Luke 6; 39 He also told them this parable: “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? 40 A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.
“For the shepherds [of the people] have become like brutes, irrational and stupid, and have not sought the Lord or inquired of Him or required Him [by necessity and by right of His word]. Therefore they have not dealt prudently and have not prospered, and all their flocks are scattered.” Jeremiah 10:21 – Amplified Bible.
I think the key to understanding the Pastor role is found back in our first verse.
Acts 17;26-27, God’s purpose in creation, so we find seek & find him.
This call is to all believers to seek God. God wants to speak to all of us, not just to pastors. When a Pastor views himself as an intermediary, solely responsible for speaking God’s word to his congregation, he is mistaken. That pastor is probably not encouraging his congregation to seek God as he should. He is probably not challenging and equipping his followers to seek God as they should.
Ending Prayer from MSG 1 Tim 2:1-10 ‘Plain Truth’
Dear God, We pray for everyone to know you, for our rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation, the way Jesus wants us to live. In Jesus name we pray, Amen.