Summary: This sermon shows how many Christian activities in the NT are directly tied to bringing glory to God. Thus, everything we do, every word we speak and every thought we think should be evaluated on the basis of whether it brings glory to God.
To the Praise of His Glory
Ephesians - Live Like You Really Are
April 22, 2012
TEXT: Please open your Bibles to Ephesians 1
Illus. – When we lived in Wiesbaden, some missionary friends bought a German toaster. When they got home, they plugged it in, placed some bread in it, and then waited for the toast to pop up a few minutes later. Well, the toast never did pop up from it because…well, it didn’t work. It just sat there, all nice and shiny. Oh, it was real pretty, all right, matching the decor of the kitchen perfectly. It had that brand new look about it…[PAUSE] but it wouldn’t toast bread.
Well, they packaged it back up to take it back, but since they couldn’t find their receipt, the German store wouldn’t exchange it, so they were stuck with it. So they brought it back home and tried to figure out what they could do with it.
Now let me ask you a question: What good is a toaster that doesn’t toast? Absolutely nothing!—It’s too big for a paper weight; too ugly for a doorstop; and it would rust if you put it out as a law ornament. So they ended up throwing it in the trash and buying a new one that worked.
It was USELESS because it didn’t fulfill the purpose for which it was made.
The same is true of the Christian who doesn’t fulfill the purpose for which HE was made.
Well, what IS our purpose in life? As we’ve been studying in Ephesians 1, in verses 3-14 we saw how Paul details spiritual blessings for believers from God the FATHER, God the SON and God the HOLY SPIRIT. But nestled in all three sets of verses is an interesting and very important phrase.
Let’s look at these three sets of verses again.
• Verses 5-6 say, “Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, 6 [Now notice the first phrase of verse 6] To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.”
• Look at verses 11-12: “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: 12 [Now watch this phrase:] That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.”
• And then we read this in verses 13-14 – “In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise, 14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, [here’s that phrase again:] unto the praise of his glory.”
Folks, Paul explains wonderful things we receive from God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. But all of them are tied to our ultimate purpose in life: We were saved to be TO THE PRAISE OF GOD’S GLORY! God elected, saved and predestinated a people, not primarily for THEIR benefit—to save us from hell and give us eternal life, things that are merely side benefit of salvation God’s ultimate purpose was for the praise of His glory.
If you’re saved this morning, that’s your purpose in life. That’s why you’re here on this earth instead of up in heaven right now. In fact, that’s the very reason you were created, for Isaiah said in Isaiah 43:7 – “Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory…”
Now, anything that is not used for the purpose for which it was created is useless, isn’t it, as our toaster story illustrated. We understand this idea in all areas of life:
• What are pens made for? [GET RESPONSE (to write)] / Well, what good is a pen that doesn’t write? [GET RESPONSE]
• What’s the purpose of a printer? [GET RESPONSE (to print)] / And what good, pray tell, is a printer that doesn’t print? [GET RESPONSE]
• What’s the purpose of an iPod? [GET RESPONSE (to listen to music)] / What good is an iPod that doesn’t play music? [GET RESPONSE]
You see everything has a purpose, and it’s of little or no value if it’s not fulfilling that purpose. Now if we started living in a conscious and intentional way for the purpose for which God created and saved us, it would revolutionize our Christian lives.
The greatest motivator in the Christian life is to start living your life with one grand idea in view—that is, that in every single thing you do, every single word you speak, and every single thought you think—you do EVERYTHING to the praise of God’s glory. That’s ought to be the goal of every one of us—to bring glory to God! That ought to be what we live for—to bring glory to God! This ought to be the thing that makes us tick in the Christian life.