One Sure Purpose
1 Peter 2:9
Nobody begins the day without a plan, be it ever so basic (on your first day of vacation, your plan may be to do absolutely nothing—but that’s still a plan!). Our lives run on plans which fulfill purposes. But when it comes to determining God’s purpose for our life, it can get more difficult than planning for just one day.
Some people are content with two or three major objectives for the day written on a 3x5 card, working out the details as the day unfolds. Others map out the day in 15-minute segments. Which approach does God take for our lives? Does he plan all the details (who we marry, where we work, where we live), or does he plan to transform our character while leaving us wide latitude of choice in the who-what-when-where-how categories? Bible students differ about the way in which God’s will controls the outworking of his plan for individuals—except in one case: The apostle Peter reveals an aspect of God’s will and purpose that is true for every single Christian believer.
Peter says God’s purpose for all Christians is to “declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” He uses terms that were originally applied to Israel—chosen people, royal priesthood, holy nation, a people belonging to God—to describe Christian believers. In the Old Testament, it was God’s intent that, by her holiness, Israel would be a light for the rest of the world’s nations (Isa. 42:6; 49:6). That was his purpose, his will, for Israel. And now, Peter says, God has made that his purpose and will for the church as well. In a sense, this overarching purpose helps in determining other more detailed parts of God’s purpose for an individual’s life: If where I work, who I marry, where I live, and what I do with my time, talent, and treasure does not allow me to declare, verbally or non-verbally, the praises of God—it may not be part of God’s purpose for my life.
While you continue studying the Scriptures and praying to learn about God’s detailed purpose for your life, don’t miss Peter’s plainly obvious priority: Bringing praise to God is our ultimate life purpose.
God’s Promise to You: “When others see me through you, you are fulfilling your life purpose.”
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