The Purpose Driven Life Day Two - You Are Not An Accident
I am not an accident. No matter how my birth came about, even if it was a mistake in human terms, it was not a surprise to God. He had planned for it long before I was born. Not only did he know I was going to be born but he also knew where I would be born, how I would be born and even how long I would live. My life was perfectly planned and brought to perfect execution. He did all of this to fulfill His purposes. Now that I realize God is the one responsible for my life, I am accountable to God to make Him the focus of my life so that through Him and in Him I can discover its meaning and purpose.
Warren goes on to teach that all that God has done He has done out of love. God, Warren says, being the perfect example of love, and indeed the very essence of love, created me to love me. I find myself quite uncomfortable with this teaching. I believe it is more Scriptural to say that God created me so I could love Him! Yesterday I quoted question and answer one of the Shorter Catechism and would like to turn to that again. I use this because it nicely summarizes several passages of the Bible (Psalm 86, Isaiah 60:21, Romans 11:36, I Corinthians 6:20, 31, etc). “The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” God created us so that we could bring glory to Him. It is true that He created us out of love and with the intention of loving us, but that was not His primary purpose. His prime purpose was His own glorification.
In this chapter Warren quotes the Bible 9 times. He uses 5 different translations and paraphrases. I am concerned by a couple of the passages. In attempting to prove his assumption that God created us to love us he quotes The Message’s paraphrase of Ephesians 1:4 which reads, “Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love.” Compare to the NASB which reads, “just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him.” That verse clearly does not prove that God’s motive for creating us was His love. The next verse goes on to say that, “In love He predestined us to adoption” but that speaks of our election and justification, not our creation.
Near the close of the chapter Warren states that we can discover God’s meaning and purpose only when we make Him the reference point of our lives. He again quotes The Message which paraphrases Romans 12:3 as, “The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what He has done for us.” Again, I will compare to the NASB which says, “For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgement, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith.” I agree completely with Warren’s statement, but can not understand how this passage, when properly translated, proves his point.
Point To Ponder
Today’s point to ponder is “I am not an accident.” To me that is not a major revelation and accepting my life has never been a struggle. However, when I began to ponder the statement, especially in light of today’s Question To Consider, I realized that though I have not struggled with my life being accidental, I have often struggled with parts of my personality and character (and even physical traits) as being accidental. I see now that God created and foreordained me not only in an abstract sense of giving me life, but also in an intimate way of providing me with a certain type of character as well as a specific personality and specific physical traits. Rather than be disappointed or angry with God for giving these to me, I should accept them as part of who God created me to be. Rather than hide them, I should discover how I can use them for Him.
Tomorrow’s topic is What drives my life?