What am I here for? The popular view is that I am here to glorify and serve God. What kind of service does God in heaven need? The answer is, none! Instead, His creation and His image or man does. In the covenants with Adam and Noah, God commanded man to manage the earth and everything on it. The two words used to define that purpose were having dominion and replenishing. God intended man to be self-governing. The second commandment was, “Be fruitful and multiply.” God expected man to procreate and regenerate (Gen.1:28; 09:7). For that purpose God created one male and one female (Gen.1:27). When the serpent enticed Eve, the relationship with her mate was damaged. The couple began to violate the negative commandment that dealt with the desire to taste the knowledge of good and evil. Evil did triumph and man, as well as nature, began to die (Gen.2:16-17). Man began to neglect the environment and pursued selfish aims, and thereby began to dishonor God. It is a well-maintained earth and an upright human life that glorifies the Creator (Deut.10:12).
God called Abraham to continue His purpose and not change it. He promised him a land that could be turned into milk and honey, an heir of Abraham’s bloodline and a godly nation that would influence the world (Gen.17). Moses was chosen to finalize God’s purpose for Israel and supply her with a code of ethics and the Ten Commandments (Ex.& Lev.). Moses and his generation were not allowed to enter Canaan. Joshua made a good beginning by establishing a god-fearing nation. Shortly thereafter, the Israelites turned to pagan life-stiles and rituals. They demanded a king in place of God. David united Israel under one God and the nation reached its climax under Solomon. Then, graft and corruption led to immorality and degradation. That was when Micah 06:8 announced, “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Both nations, Israel and Judah, disobeyed the laws of God and failed in fulfilling the purpose for which they were chosen; hence, they were taken into captivity and dispersed among the gentiles.
After some of the exiles returned from Babylon, Judaism came into being. This was when Jesus came on the scene and proclaimed that the Jews had to return to the same old purpose. He announced that God’s reign had come, that people had to start managing their lives and that they had to return to God’s law (Mk.1:14; Mt.5:17-20). His basic message was that what man produces either glorifies or dishonors God. Jesus demonstrated it by what he did (Jn.10:38; Mt.11:4-6). Jesus expects no less of his followers. Being faithful in what one is appointed to do and that is honoring the Lord (Mt.25:21-23). Even in secular jobs, one is expected to be faithful (Lk.16:10-12). What one was doing to the least of his brethren, one was doing for Him (Mt.25:40). John, the Elder, asked, “How can one shut one’s compassion for the needy and speak of loving God?” (I.Jn.3:16-17). A religion that honors God takes care of orphans and widows (Ja.1:27).
What then is the purpose in going to a Church or belonging to one? It has a multiple purpose. Jesus promised to build His Church (Mt.16:17-20; 28:19-20). It is to help the members improve their own lives (I Cor.12:27-30; Heb.10:25). By banding together, a larger cause can be served. One person may not be able to care for another person without the assistance of others. It takes at least two or three to be effective in our service to the Lord (Mt.18:19-20; Lk.10:1). Even Jesus depended on others to assist Him (Mk.15:41). As an individual just how fit am I physically, mentally, psychologically and spiritually to fulfill any purpose? My spirit might be willing but my body is too weak to be of service to anyone (Mt.26:41). The Church should be such a training center that enables my total person to be rendered fit for the kingdom (I Thes.5:11; Col.2:7).