Monday, July 19, 2010

What's the good?

Romans 8:28-30 is one of my favorite verses.  I'm also aware that's its one of the most overused and abused verses in all of scripture.  I preached on in this past Sunday, if you want to hear it or download it, you can go here

There's a lot going on in these verses and I'm well aware that I didn't cover everything in the sermon, for this blog I just want to hilight one thing and share the main idea.  That way, you can fill in the blanks from the last blog entry. 

Paul says in verse 28: "all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose."  We miss the point if we think this verse is just about our good.  Its not about our good is it?  Its about the good.  So what's the good?  I believe his purpose is the good.  Then the question is what's his purpose?  Paul tells us that people who have embraced Christ are chosen (he uses predestined) "to conform to the likeness of his son" in the very next verse.  There's his purpose.  His purpose for us is to "conform to the likeness (or image) of Christ."

If we do that, then we understand its not about us.  And we will subscribe to this point: God's good in our lives does not always equal our happiness.  Jesus knew that His life was not about Him but about the will of the father.    If we are supposed to emulate the the kind of life that Jesus lived, then we will know that its not about our happiness, but its about his purpose.  And his purpose is for us to conform to Christ.  Which means:
-to love with the same compassion that that Christ loved with,
-to invite people into the kingdom with the same kind of boldness that Christ invited with,
-to serve with the same kind of humility that Christ served with,
-to forgive with the same kind of willingness that Christ served with,
-to speak truth with the same kind of conviction that Christ spoke with,
-to pray with the same kind of eagerness that Christ prayed with

May you strive to conform to His image and in doing so find a life of purpose, fulfillment and joy.

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