Rule #8: Purpose to be Godly (8 Rules for Growing in Godliness)

~ Challies

We cannot overstate the importance of knowing our purpose. There is no doubt our lives will go awry and even go to waste if we neglect to learn the purpose for our existence and the purpose for our salvation. And central to understanding our purpose is understanding why God placed us on this earth. This is why the old catechism begins with the question of purpose: “What is the chief end of man?” This is the question that has provided fodder for theologians and philosophers since time immemorial.

Many believe the purpose of life is pleasure. Since we do not know what lies beyond, they say, we owe it to ourselves to satiate our thirst for pleasure with whatever appeals to mind or body. Perhaps this is what the old sage calls for in Ecclesiastes: “I commend joy, for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun” (8:15). A man dying of thirst will wring out a moist cloth to gain the very last drop of water. In the same way, many live for pleasure and die trying to wring out every last pleasure before they depart into an unknown eternity. Others fall on the opposite extreme, lauding austerity in place of pleasure, monasticism in place of hedonism, less instead of more.

There is a better answer that directs us to greater pleasure. The catechism’s first answer summarizes the wisdom of the Bible and calls us to something far more satisfying: Our purpose is to glorify God and enjoy him forever. Godliness is the path to pleasure, for by godliness we glorify God, and in glorifying God, we enjoy God. There is no greater pleasure than close fellowship with our Creator and, therefore, no higher purpose than godliness. As we come to the close of this series on “8 Rules for Growing in Godliness,” we see that our final instruction is one that encapsulates them all: Purpose to be godly.

The Power of Purpose

Go to: Rule #8: Purpose to be Godly (8 Rules for Growing in Godliness)

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