Summary: Our ultimate goal in life is to glorify God. One way in which we glorify God is by becoming more like Christ. This sermon explores how God makes us more like Christ.
Today is the third Sunday in our series on “Glorifying God.” Our ultimate goal in life is to glorify God. We glorify God in a number of different ways.
One way in which we glorify God is by becoming like Christ. The Bible says in Romans 8:29: “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son.” God’s plan has always been to make you like his Son, Jesus Christ. God wants all of his children to bear the family resemblance, which is most clearly seen in his Son.
"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28).
Our ultimate goal in life is to glorify God.
The first question in the Westminster Shorter Catechism asks, “What is the chief end [or goal] of man?” The answer given is, “Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.”
The reason we exist is to bring glory to God. God created us and all things for his own glory.
The mission of our church is “to bring people to Jesus Christ and membership in his church family, develop them to Christ-like maturity, equip them for their ministry in the church and life mission in the world, in order to magnify God.”
Our mission as a church is to glorify God in each of five key areas: membership, maturity, ministry, mission, and magnification.
Interestingly, each of these five key areas corresponds to how we glorify God in our personal lives too.
First, we bring glory to God by worshiping him. We studied this key area two weeks ago. This key area corresponds to magnification.
Second, we bring glory to God by loving other believers. This is what we looked at last week. This key area corresponds to membership, which brings us into fellowship with one another.
Third, we bring glory to God by becoming like Christ. This key area corresponds to maturity. We will look at this today.
Fourth, we bring glory to God by serving others with our gifts. This key area corresponds to ministry.
And fifth, we bring glory to God by telling others about him. This key area corresponds to mission.
Today, we want to examine how we bring glory to God by becoming more like Christ, which is glorifying God by discipleship.
How do we become more like Christ? God uses a process to make us more like his Son. It doesn’t just happen overnight. It is not that we become a Christian one day and then we are like Christ the next day. No. It takes a lifetime of steady, determined, disciplined growth to become like Jesus.
The process that God uses to make us more like Christ is called discipleship. God uses lots of things in this process. He uses his Word. He uses prayer. He uses people. He uses trials. He uses tragedies. And so on.
Today, I simply want to give you the foundation that God uses to make us more like Christ.
In Romans 8:28 Paul lists five truths about the process that God uses to make us more like Christ that we know. So, let us observe five unshakeable convictions that we know concerning the process that God uses to make us more like Christ.
I. God Works (8:28c)
The first unshakeable conviction we know concerning the process that God uses to make us more like Christ is that God works (8:28c). That is, God is at work in our lives.
If you have a King James Bible or a New King James Bible, you may have noticed that Romans 8:28 reads something like this, “And we know that all things work together for good.” This translation should be rejected, since all things do not automatically work themselves for our good. The reason we reject this translation is because in the Greek God is the subject of the sentence. So, it is not all things that are at work; rather, it is God who is at work.
However, we could accept the King James Version translation if, as Dr. Doug Moo says, “it is the sovereign guidance of God that is presumed as the undergirding and directing force behind all the events of life.”
William Carey, often called the Father of Modern Missions, faced a ministry disappointment of overwhelming proportions. Carey began his missionary career to India in 1793. He labored in that country for 40 continuous years, never once returning to his native England. Carey was a prodigious translator, translating portions of Scripture into over a dozen Indian languages.