Real Purpose

February 1, 2014 at 1:09 pm | Posted in Christianity | Leave a comment

I’ve heard many pastors, lay preachers, and general Christians talk about how God has this amazing purpose for your life. You hear it all the time from people like Joel Osteen and Rick Warren. Sadly, you also hear it from numerous pastors who aren’t near as famous.

This got me thinking…

If there are that many pastors hearing from God and telling their congregations that God has an awesome, blow your mind, purpose for their lives filled with joy and blessings; then why don’t things look differently?

Let’s say that there are 300,000 active pastors around the US. And, let’s say that the average size of a congregation is 300 people. The numbers are conservative and I realize this is far outdone by churches like Saddleback and Lakewood, but humor me. If we go with these numbers, we get 9 MILLION people who have been given by God an amazing, awesome, knock-your-socks-off, purpose that will change the world, witness to the lost (the unawesome), and take ground for the kingdom of God (hey…I’m on a roll with the cliches…I’m gagging, but I’m on a roll).

There are 314 million people in the US. If we subtract the 9 million awesome people from the group, there are 305 million people left who are unawesome and have no purpose. Using these numbers, there are 34 unawesome people for every awesome person. This means that every awesome person only has to impact 34 unawesome people for the kingdom of God. I mean, really, how hard is it to invite 34 unawesome people to the pizza/XBox party at church, right? So why do things look so different in the real world?

If these 9 million awesome people only have to reach out to 34 people with their “gospel of awesomeness” to see things change in our nation and to have the kingdom of God come to earth and to see revival in the land, then why hasn’t it happened already? Why do things seem to be getting worse instead of better? Where are all these “I’m going to live out God’s purpose for my life and be awesome and powerful and righteous and the devil better watch out because I’m gonna rebuke him like it’s nobody’s business” people making an impact? What are they actually accomplishing? I don’t see it.

Before anyone gets mad, I’m not bashing the Bride of Christ. I wouldn’t think of it. What I am bashing are all the pastors who seem to want to spend all their time telling their flocks that God has a wonderful plan for their lives when both scripture and church history paint a much different and more realistic picture of the Christian life. Thousands upon thousands are being martyred for their faith TODAY. That doesn’t seem to match up with the wonderful life promised by these men who parade as shepherds.

And yet, this is the prominent message in America nowadays. It’s not about studying to show yourself approved. That’s work and it’s hard and IT’S CONVICTING. It’s not about discipling people and training them in righteousness (which should start at home!). Instead, it’s become about tickling ears and making people feel comfortable. Where’s the impact in that? Do you think that because you proclaim something to be true that it is? Just because you claim to be rich that you will be, even if you don’t see it right now? I fear that we’ve replaced Biblical truth with man-centered ideology, sound theology with Bible sound bites, and contending for the faith with pragmatic issues, events, and boycotts that do nothing to address the real problem or give the only solution.

From a Biblical standpoint, the Christian is the only one who has lasting hope. And they did nothing to earn it or buy it or win it. It was given to them in spite of their wicked, evil ways. The Christian has peace because His salvation is secure in Christ, because it was Christ who did it all. There’s no way that man can mess it up or lose it because he had nothing to do with it. The Christian serves a God who is transcendent, omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent. He is perfect in His holiness, His righteousness, and His wrath. He’s also perfect in His love, His mercy, and His forgiveness. It is Christ who made an impact on the earth for the kingdom of heaven and it is Christ who continues to make an impact on the hearts of sinners around the world. We are not promised a “good life” and we definitely don’t deserve it. Instead, we are promised a Comforter who walks alongside us as we face trials, tribulations, sickness, and even death. That is the message of the gospel. Christ saves sinners. And then, He keeps them safe and will raise them on the last day.

That’s real purpose…

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