Day 5 – God’s Purpose For All Christians
“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls.”
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you…”
Know God and Make God Known
As Christians, we know we have a part to play in God’s vision. We do this by living a life of purpose. One definition of purpose is “the reason why something was created”. God has a purpose for each of us, a reason why we were created on an individual level, which we will cover on Day 6. But there is a purpose for all Christians in general and that is to know God and make God known to others.
The Bible teaches us plenty about God, His will and character. Hebrews stands out as a book of the Bible that explains not only who Jesus is but why we should know Him intimately.
“since all the commandments have been fulfilled by Jesus Christ, only if we accept Him as our Lord and Saviour, can we have a relationship with God.”
Hebrews 7 explains to us that Jesus is our new High Priest mediating a New Covenant with God. Before Jesus’s death and resurrection, faith was expressed through obedience to commandments, rituals and animal sacrifices. Sin could only be atoned for through punishment and death. The Old Covenant said that only on the condition we follow all the commandments, can we have a relationship with God.
But then, by the sacrifice of Jesus, there was a new way for us to have a healthy and wholesome relationship with God. The New Covenant says since all the commandments have been fulfilled by Jesus Christ, only if we accept Him as our Lord and Saviour, can we have a relationship with God.
Hebrews 12:1-3 further elaborates on how we can know God and should pursue Him. It uses the metaphor of running a race with Jesus as the end prize, meaning knowing Him and being with Him should be our end goal. In verse 1 we are reminded that we are part of a community of faith-led, righteous people. This community includes people we read about in the Bible such as Abraham and Sarah, Moses, and David. Their legacy of faith should inspire us to continue living by faith now and to lay aside anything that is weighing us down, or causing us to sin. Sin is addressed through repentance, but whatever is weighing us down may need diverse steps to overcome. That is because the weight could be anything, such as:
- Expectations others have of you that become a burden
- Disappointments in life
- Hope deferred or unanswered prayers
- Grief that is distancing you from God
- Negative thoughts or habits
Verse 2 highlights that we will encounter difficulties in our race to pursue Jesus and encourages us to endure hardships for the sake of the greater goal as Jesus did. After all, our hardships pale in comparison to those of Jesus who endured the shame of Crucifixion and taking on all our sin.
Through the book of Matthew (and many other books), God teaches us that we should make Him known. Matthew 28:19-20, famously known as ‘The Great Commission’ is a defining passage for God’s vision of a “practising Christian”. As Christians, our aim is to make Christ known in three ways:
- evangelism: introducing people to the New Covenant, aka the Gospel of Jesus Christ
- discipleship: teaching people the character and will of Jesus
- representation: exemplify Jesus’ character in our everyday lives
As we look to restore our vision and realign ourselves with God’s vision, we need to be led by our purpose to know God and make Him known. We must keep Jesus as our end goal in the race of our lives, letting go of any weights or sins that could be holding us back.
Questions to ask yourself
- What weight is ensnaring you at the moment? How can Jesus help you lose it?
- What more could you know about God?
- Is there anything new you need to repent of, or be grateful for?
- What are you doing to make God known?
A prayer to get you started
Father, you are so faithful, even when I mess up. Even when I am faithless you are faithful. Forgive me for when I have let weight and sin entangle me so much that they have made me take my eyes off you Jesus. Remind me that you endured the Cross for the sake of restored intimacy with me and that there is no purpose greater than yours. I want to know you more and make you known more. Please give me the wisdom and courage to do so.
In Jesus’ Name I pray,
Matthew 22:37-40 gives us Jesus’ answer to the question “what is the greatest commandment?”
Ephesians 3:1-11 explains the mystery of the Gospel and the role of the church
Hebrews 11 beautifully lists a number of faith filled people from the bible who should hopefully inspire you
1 Peter 2:9 describes us as a royal priesthood
Tomorrow we review God’s Purpose For You.
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