Monday, October 17, 2005

The Glory of God
the Salvation of Men & Women

In our worship services together yesterday, CCC Missionary, Dan Krull, reminded us that a Gospel-Centered Community is a Misisonal Community. Dan not only gave a great Scriptural challenge, but also shared how he and his family have been working out the gospel in their own lives.

The Big Idea of Dan's message was that God's chief end or purpose and our chief end or purpose is the same: To Glorify God and enjoy Him forever.

I had someone from the congregation email me this morning and ask if I agreed that God's chief/end is to glorify Himself or if I believed that the salvation of men and women was God's chief end/purpose. They thought that they had heard me make some past statements indicating the latter. They seemed to associate this emphasis on God's glory as reflective of dispensational theology. To clear up any confusion, here's an edited excerpt from my response. . . .

I'm not sure what I've said or what you've heard in the past, but I'm right with Dan on the glory of God thing. Dan's view is hardly a dispensational perspective, but rather a historical Reformed perspective emerging from SOLA #5, Sola De Gloria, (For the glory of God alone!) Thus, Dan was quoting from question #1 of the W. Catechism, considered the standard Reformed catechism.

But here's the thing. . . . I believe that God is glorifying Himself in the salvation of men and women. The two are not mutually exclusive, though if pressed I would argue that the salvation of men and women is subsumed to the glory of God. Ephesians 1:1-14 comes to mind here. . .

1:5-6 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, which he freely bestowed on us in the beloved.

1:11-12 also we have obtained an inheritance having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory.

1:13-14 . . .You were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God's own possession to the praise of His glory.

God is all about His own glory and therefore for our good. John Piper says it this way. . "God is most glorified when we are most satisfied in Him." God's glory and our good meet in God's redemptive purposes. The Gospel makes it possible for God to be glorified and us to be satisfied in Him. A study of God's Glory throughout the Scriptures bears this out as well. It is a dominant theme in both Old and New Testaments.

Speaking of John Piper, there is an excellent article at the back of his book, "Desiring God" that addresses this whole theme of God's Glory. I would be happy to copy and send it to you if that would be helpful. I also have the complete works of Jonathan Edwards which contains the essay Dan referenced, "The End for Which God Created World," or just go to to read it.

I'm sorry if I created confusion regarding my own convictions on these matters. It sure wasn't intended.

--Sola De Gloria!

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