23 March 2011

Why We Exist

There is a friend of mine who I met providentially who is not a Christian. There are times when he seems to be deeply troubled about the things of God and salvation and other times when he seems to drift so far away from the truth.

On several occasions he has asked me heart warming questions, such as, "What does it really mean to surrender your life to God?". After explaining it to him in as simple a manner as I can, he'll ask further and after we've chatted a while we'll part company. When we meet the next time he'll be talking about how we have 'potential' and God has not created us to be followers but rather to be leaders. Etc. It is clear that he is under the influence of pentecostal/charismatic preaching and literature.

The major problem I find with Pentecostal folk is that the emphasis is always on... me. It's all about me. Enter "prosperity gospel".

The question which, for me, settles it is, why am I here? Why did God create me or anyone or anything else on this planet? And this is the question that I asked my dear friend when I last saw him. He went on and on about how we are successes and how God wants us to prosper etc. I thought I could best explain it to him by explaining why we exist. So then, why do we exist?

Well, we must agree that we exist because we were created. The bible says, "Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made." ~John 1:3.

Who created us? God.

Why did God create us?

This question is best explained by answering the question, why does anybody create anything? Why do we buy/lend/create/fix etc, certain things?

What was the last thing you purchased, for instance? Was it a watch? Maybe a bag? Maybe a gift for someone.

Notice that for every item you have ever bought, there is a reason and that reason pertains to the pleasure of yourself. It could have been a gift for someone but the point is, that item you bought was meant to give pleasure to the person you bought it for. You derive pleasure (and sometimes relief) from the pleasure of the other person. There is nothing you can point at that you purchased or created for itself. Nothing. Nothing that you purchased for no particular reason. No one can sincerely say, "I just purchased it." If you sit down and think thoroughly, you'll find there was a reason why you purchased that item and it was all about your pleasure/relief.

Well, why should it be any different with God? Why should God go through the 'trouble' or perhaps, more appropriately, bother of creating man and the world in which he lives?

Did God just create man? I don't think so. I think there must be a reason and just as we as human beings never create or purchase anything unless it will either directly or indirectly bring us pleasure or relief, God has, likewise, created man and everything else to bring him some kind of pleasure.

He did not do it because he needed his creation. If he needed anything, he would cease to be God. Neither did he do it for relief, otherwise he would be doing it out of need and would cease to be God. He did it for his own pleasure. The question that every being on this planet should ask himself/herself is, am I bringing God the pleasure he created me to bring him? I'm I meeting the purpose for which I was created? Or is life about me? Have I ever asked myself  how I aught to bring him pleasure?

Surely God did not create us to merely get rich, have lots of houses, and just have fun. That would be all about us. Our existence is all about Him. And that is where I challenge my Pentecostal friends to begin. To have a view of life from 'the lens of God's eye'.

To think of our sufferings as Christians from God's perspective. To think of our prosperity from the God's perspective. To think of joy, pain, the past, the present, the future, money, love etc, interms of how these issues in my life can be used to bring God pleasure.

You may be thinking "that's insane", how can my entire life revolve around God? What about me? Well, imagine if every appliance in your house took that 'world view' one morning. The kettle figured it didn't want to boil you water anymore, it wants a life of its own too. The taps refuse to let water out, they're tired of serving you. The stove and fridge refused to work anymore, they figure, all those years of serving you, its time they enjoyed themselves too. And all the rest of the things in your house finally decided to have some 'me' time. What would you do? I know what I would do. Get rid of them all and buy appliances that know what they are in my house to do, i.e. serve me. Live for me. The principle is pretty much the same when it comes to our being creatures of God. And that is why evolution is a serious affront against God.

Thankfully, the bible is there to guide us. We do not need a prophet to help us determine how our present circumstances or future endeavours can be maneuvered in such a way as brings God pleasure. He has left us his word.

The puritans put it this way: What is the chief end of man? To glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

So there you have it. You exist for the pleasure (or to glorify) your Creator -God.

For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. ~ Colossians 1:16.

For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen. ~Romans 11:36.

Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole [duty] of man. ~Ecclesiastes 12:13.


Anonymous said...

excellent article and very much needed in the world of youths full of self

high.expressions said...

A good article. Well said concerning why we exist. You covered the grounds well.

Only, maybe, do NOT use Pentecostal/Charismatic too loosely. It incorrectly offend many Charismatics like myself who do NOT subscribe to the prosperity gospel.

Anthony Chia, high.expressions
I believe 1 John 1:9 is for believers. http://high-expressions.blogspot.com/2010/07/1-john-19-is-for-believers.html