God’s desire

One of the authors listed in my blogroll consistently pokes a stick into my conscience and makes me think.

John Shore’s Dec. 7 blog entry “Suddenly Christian” http://johnshore.wordpress.com/2007/12/07/why-would-god-create-humans/ succeeded in doing that again.

The post leads with:

“There are only two reasons anyone ever does anything: because they have to, or because they want to.That means that God either wanted to create humans, or had to create humans. We must be the result either of God’s desire, or of God’s need.”

In addition to scurrying to the Bible to see what God says this post had me scurrying to the bookshelf to the expanded “Mere Christianity” by C.S. Lewis, “Knowing God” by J.I. Packer and “The Purpose-Driven Life” by Rick Warren.

Off the top of my head I go with “God wanted me for His own” and so all creation followed, including God injecting Himself into the human timeline via Jesus Christ. God went so far as to blowing the Holy Spirit into those who accept that Jesus was all man/all God and died as a sacrifice for us, then arose to provide us new life for us. Seems ego-centric of me, thinking God thought of me when creating time and creation, but understates the awesomeness of God’s love.

One comment mentioned God outside the time stream looking at His creation much the same way an author looks at a creation displayed on a page. Not coincidentally for some reason I read words very like that in Lewis’ work last night. This tied my brain up and. Whoa, but then there’s that free will bit. Can the words jump about on the page and form a totally different story?

I was still sorting it out when John wrote his enlightening post.

You are right, John, in saying this is philosophy – deep, life-giving meaningful philosophy.

It was so much easier as a child to just sing “Jesus Loves Me” and “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands.” Walking out from Sunday School, there’d be a warm glow. I’d think God who made a lot of really big stuff, some of it cool – some of which I couldn’t figure out (like mosquitoes) – really cares for a nerd like me who wins all the Bible drills?

Shore went on to ask:

But why would God make that choice? What’s in it for him? What desire of God’s are we satisfying just by being alive?

I like the answer given above by Dan Carpenter:Here’s the scripture for that. Revelation 4:11 says, “Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created.” Colossians 1:16 reiterates the point: “All things were created by Him and for Him.” Warren’s work, “The Purpose-Driven Life,” expands on that. I’ve only made it to chapter 13 and that’s a few years ago. My short-term memory has deteriorated to the point I’ll have to go back to it to go beyond my purpose as being to glorify God.

The entry regarding Deus as pater familias, so to speak, rang true as my own view of God for a while mirrored the way I viewed my father. My father was usually asleep during the brief time he was at home because of the long hours he worked to keep us in that home.This brings to mind lyrics from the Tom Waits’ song “God’s Away on Business.”

Ship is sinking
The ship is sinking
The ship is sinking

There’s a leak, there’s a leak in the boiler room
The poor, the lame, the blind
Who are the ones that we kept in charge?
Killers, thieves and lawyers

God’s away, God’s away
God’s away on business, business
God’s away, God’s away
God’s away on business, business

Waits later sings (or what ever it is he does) that there’s “always such a big temptation to be good… There’s always free cheddar in the mousetrap baby.”

It’s hard to get past the view of God as a deal-maker, do this and God will do this. Or the view of God as a dad you too infrequently get quality time with as in Harry Chapin’s “The Cat’s in the Cradle.” Waits’ song poses an even bleaker view that God’s not paying attention and if God is, He’s going to smack you down in the end.

This in turn leads me to wonder if I’m pleasing God or annoying Him the way those pesky mosquitoes annoy me.

I believe God’s word to be true and so when it says “those who love me keep my commandments” I see this as one way to please God. Not because I have to because if not there’s a smackdown coming but because I want to in response to God’s love.

And so then this led me back to Morse’s comment asking if John believes God to be omniscient, how can an omniscient God have desires? Etc…

As John said, either God “had” to or “wanted” to create us. All we have to go on is that we’re here, and a great majority of us believe the reason is God put us here for his pleasure, whether we consciously realize it or not.

My experience began as a child when I was fortunate enough to sing those songs mentioned above and read about God’s love for me. I’ve experienced God’s love as he worked through others to bless me. I accepted God’s love when realizing the reality of Christ’s death and resurrection for me.

I’ve spent more than three decades since wandering around like the Israelites in the desert, shameful to say even going back to visit Egypt on a few occasions.

And I find that God still wants me. 

This God-created life is meaningless when I’m not communing with God.

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5 Responses

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    Hope that helps.
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  4. Sounds crazy. Sometimes I can’t help but surrender to my sketchy english Sorry, for off top, i wanna tell one joke) If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring? Pilgrims. vigra soft tabs I wanna to have a good time, Lets talk about something interesting!

  5. Dear Sam,

    As I read your post I remembered how I felt when I left church in Fairfield. Alabama those many years ago. Keep the faith and know He is pleased.

    BTW, my oldest son is named Sam and he just turned 25.

    Jim
    (http://jlvenablejr.wordpress.com)

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