Saturday, January 27, 2007

The Chief End of Man

For God so wished to righteously judge the world that he sent his only begotten son? No!

For God so wished for his own glorification that he sent his only begotten son? No!

For God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten son!

What then is the chief end of man? Is he the material on which God's judgment is exercised? Was he made so that he might glorify God? No! The chief end of man is to love, and to be loved by, God.

5 comments:

C Grace said...

"Was he made so that he might glorify God?"

All right I am going to be picky. I do agree with your post but, don't you think that lovers glory in each other? To glorify God is to exalt in, fully recognize the beauty, the magnificence, the perfection of God. So when we say that the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever, I see no contradiction between this and saying the chief end of man is to love and be loved by God.

God's desire for glory is selfless, it is a desire for us to fully recognize Him, fully know Him as He is because He knows what joy this will bring us.

Franklin Mason said...

Ah, I see. I had in mind that to glorify God is to stand as a testament to his greatness (however one might do this). It is as if we are a work of art made by God so that, through it, God's greatness might shine forth.

On this account of glorification, it is wholly God-directed. We exist not for ourlselves nor for any good we might obtain for ourselves. Rather we exist for another, so that through us his greatness might be known.

You seem to posit instead a kind of glorification that is not ultimately God-directed but is rather human directed. Our glorification of God is not for his good but is rather for our good.

I like it, but it seems paradoxical in a way. When we glorify another, our adulation is directed at that other. We seem not to have in mind our own good. How then can it be that it is for our own good? It seems that, if this is true, we can have our good only when we do not seek it out. We can have it only when we seek out another.

Delightful.

C Grace said...

CS Lewis's The Weight of Glory is a delightful read. I linked to an online PDF file of it.

"It seems that, if this is true, we can have our good only when we do not seek it out. We can have it only when we seek out another."

This is the truth that our self-will kicks and screams and fights against admitting, for it spells the destruction of the self-will. I plan to put a post up on this tonight.

Rita said...

Well written article.

Franklin Mason said...

Thank you, Rita.

A little comment about my own forgetfulness: I had to reread the post before I could recall what was in it. Time is like space - put enough of it between you a thing, and you can no longer see it.