Title: The Sevenfold Purpose of God
Text: Romans 8:28; 9:11; Ephesians 1:11; 3:11; 2 Timothy 1:9
Subject: The certain accomplishment of God’s eternal purpose
Date: Sunday Morning - February 26, 1983
My subject this morning is The Sevenfold Purpose of God. We believe according to the Scriptures that the Lord our God is a God of purpose, absolute and unalterable purpose. Before the world began, Almighty God sovereignly purposed all that ever comes to pass. Noting in this world is left to chance. Everything is moving toward the predetermined end of God’s eternal purpose with absolute, precise accuracy.
This is what I am saying - Everything that comes to pass in time was purposed by God in eternity.
Now let’s look into the Scriptures to see if this is so. The Word of God must determine the issue. “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this Word, it is because there is no light in them.”
Romans 8:28: “We know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
Romans 9:11: Here Paul tell us that God chose Jacob in everlasting love and rejected Esau in everlasting hatred and that he revealed this fact to the boys’ parents, “that the purpose of God according to election might stand.”
Ephesians 1:11: “In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will.”
Ephesians 3:11: Paul explains here that he preached the gospel to the Gentiles, even the unsearchable riches of Christ, that the manifold wisdom of God in the gospel might be made known unto all men, “according to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
2 Timothy 1:9 - “God hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.”
These five texts which we have read from the Word of God himself tell us five distinct facts about the purpose of God.
1. The purpose of God is eternal.
2. The purpose of God includes all things.
3. The purpose of God has the benefit of God’s elect for its particular design.
Everything that God has purposed is for the ultimate, spiritual, and eternal benefit of his covenant people.
1. The purpose of God is immutable and sure.
God says, “My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isa. 46:10). “What God does, he has always purposed to do” (A. H. Strong).
2. And in its ultimate end God’s purpose will accomplish the eternal salvation of his people and the glory of his own great name.
Now, today, I want to show you The Sevenfold Purpose of God. I have searched the Scriptures and found seven things which God purposed, seven things which must come to pass. We are going to look at several passages of Scripture; and the key word in each text is the word “must”. These seven things must, of a certainty, come to pass. These things must come to pass, because God has purposed them.
I. This is the matter of first importance, so we will look at this first - THE SON OF MAN MUST SUFFER AND DIE UPON THE CROSS (Lk. 9:22).
The death of our Lord Jesus Christ was no accident. It was not something which came to pass as the result of man’s free-will, or because the Jews would not have him as their King. The Lord Jesus Christ MUST die at Calvary. He said so, “The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.”
Why must the Lord Jesus Christ suffer and die upon the cursed tree? Why must the Son of God lay down his life?
A. Christ hat to die at Jerusalem, because God had purposed it. “Him being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain” (Acts 2:23; 4:28).
B. Christ had to die at Jerusalem in order to fulfill his covenant engagements as our everlasting Surety.
Our Lord voluntarily took upon himself our redemption, and he freely laid down his life for us. But having voluntarily agreed to be our Surety, he had to lay down his life for us. His honor and faithfulness demanded it (Gen. 43:8-9; John 10:18; Acts 13:29).
A. Christ had to die in the place of his people so that the Scriptures might be fulfilled (Isa. 53; Psa. 22).
B. It was absolutely necessary for the Lord Jesus Christ to die at Calvary, in order for God to save his people (Rom. 3:24-26; John 3:14-17).
Only through the death of the God-man in the place of his people could -
1. The righteousness of God be revealed.
2. The sin of man be exposed.
3. The justice of God be satisfied.
4. The people of God be forgiven.
5. The love of God be manifest.
II. But, the death of Christ, in itself, is not sufficient to save us. IN ORDER TO SAVE US, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MUST RISE FROM THE DEAD (John 20:9).
“He must first rise again from the dead.” “He was raised again for our justification.”
A dead Christ would never have been of any value to God or to his people. But when the Lord Jesus Christ arose from the dead the foundation of our faith was fixed.
A. In his resurrection, it is evidently revealed that Christ is the Son of God.
B. The resurrection of Christ assures us that sin is put away and justice is satisfied.
C. The resurrection of Christ is sure evidence of his power and ability to save all who come to God by him (Heb. 7:25; Rom. 8:31-34).
III. Here is the third thing that must come to pass, because God has purposed it - THE GOSPEL OF THE GRACE OF GOD MUST BE PREACHED THROUGHOUT THE WHOLE WORLD (Mk. 13:10).
“And the gospel must first be published among all nations.” Here we are told that prior to the second advent of our Lord Jesus Christ the gospel of his grace must be heralded throughout the world.
· To declare to all men the mercy of God.
· For the salvation of God’s elect in every nation.
· To leave the unbelieving without excuse.
IV. Fourthly, when this gospel has been declared throughout the whole world and before our Lord comes again - ALL OF GOD’S ELECT MUST BE SAVED (John 10:16).
God is longsuffering with this world and allows it to stand only because he has in it a people whom he is determined to save - “Other sheep I have which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”
NOTE: All of God’s elect shall be saved. Not one of Christ’s sheep shall ever perish.
· The purpose of God demands it.
· The law of God demands it.
· The satisfaction of Christ demands it.
A. Christ must come seeking his lost sheep (John 4:4).
B. Before any can enter into the kingdom of heaven, they must be born again (John 3:3-8).
C. They all must come to God through Christ, believing that he is, and that he is the rewarder of them that diligently seek him (Heb. 11:6).
D. Their wills must be broken by almighty grace (John 3:30).
E. They all must learn to worship the Lord God (John 4:23-24).
V. Here is the fifth thing which must be done - THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MUST REIGN AS KING (1 Cor. 15:25).
“He must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.”
Beloved, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the sovereign Ruler and King of this universe. You must bow to him as Lord, or you must perish.
A. He must reign for the salvation of his people (John 17:1-3).
B. He must reign because he earned the right (Phil. 2:9-11).
C. He must reign because none shall stop him.
VI. Again, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MUST COME AGAIN IN POWER AND GREAT GLORY (1 Cor. 15:51-55). These bodies must be raised.
Once all of God’s elect have been saved and all the purposes of God in this world have been accomplished, the Lord himself shall come, and every eye shall see him.
· He must come to raise his saints.
· He must come to destroy his enemies.
· He must come to create all things now.
· He must come to reign gloriously.
VII. And, in the last place, I know that, according to the eternal purpose of God - EVERY PERSON MUST STAND BEFORE THE LORD JESUS CHRIST IN JUDGMENT (2 Cor. 5:10).
“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that everyone may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.”
When everything which God has purposed is done, you are going to meet God in the judgment. How will you fair in the judgment?
1. Children of God, take comfort in this - The purpose of God shall stand. He shall do all his pleasure.
2. Rebel - You must surrender to Christ! You must bow! You must believe! Or you must perish! 1 Cor. 1525-28).