“For God”??

Have you done something “for God” lately?  Personally, I doubt that you have!  Perhaps I am getting a little uptight in my theological opinions (although I don’t think so), but here is what I mean by this remark.  Our Lord is all-powerful, all-knowing and completely sovereign.  As far as I can see, that means He doesn’t need us to do anything “for” Him.  Now,  I understand what people really mean when they use this expression.  But wouldn’t the proper terminology indicate we do things “out of God” or “out of Christ”?  Take a look at this Scripture passage:

“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”  Ephesians 2:10

The Christian’s good works flow out of a new nature, a oneness with Christ.  The works that need to be done are prepared beforehand for us to do, fore-ordained by God and used by Him to express His nature, glory and plan to a fallen creation.  So in a sense we really are doing good works “for God”, but in my opinion this is secondary.  Our primary driving motivation isn’t to provide something for the God that owns all, but rather it is because of our new nature.  With the Holy Spirit residing within us we desire to do these things because they are good, giving and just.  We are “created in Christ Jesus” and our desires and actions flow out of Him (and resemble Him), not out of ourselves.  This is one reason why the book of 1st John describes good works as a sign of salvation, not a part of nor prerequisite for salvation.

This brings me to my final thought.  When doing good works, do you hold the view that God needs you to do them, or that without you they will never get done?  If so, your theology is seriously flawed!  If the all-powerful Lord wants something done, it will be done (with or without you)!  You are not performing good works to fill His “needs.”  Another question to ask yourself is this, “When I complete a good deed, do I have a sense of merit, as though I earned something?”  If so, you are in grave danger!  We cannot earn anything with God!  Our salvation is solely through grace.  Look at the two verses immediately preceding our text:

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”   Ephesians 2:8-9

Simply put, the true Christian does good deeds because he wants to do them.  Such deeds flow from the new nature and Spirit of Christ now within him.  We are not filling God’s needs, nor is there merit earned.  When discussing a good work performed by a Brother or sister in Christ, let us not use the phrase, “They do much for God”, instead let us use a more accurate phrase.  Perhaps, “Their deeds are flowing from Christ”.  This will give credit and glory where it is due as well as promoting a more accurate theology of our sovereign Lord!

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2 Comments on ““For God”??”

  1. The Master's Slave Says:

    Happy New Year ol’ friend! Love y’all to pieces. Thanks for your obedience and surrenderedness to God, it’s been a wild ride for us and it’s great to have had you riding shotgun.

    Reply

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  1. For God? (via ChurchSalt) « The Master's Slave - January 1, 2012

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