We were predestined “to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ should be to the praise of His glory” (Eph. 1:12).
Preeminence implies supreme standing, picturing one who excels over all others in a particular quality or achievement. There is no one more preeminent than God.
Ephesians 1:12 underscores that truth. You were redeemed and granted an eternal inheritance that God might be glorified. Certainly you benefit greatly from salvation, but God’s glory is the primary issue.
Our man-centered culture doesn’t share that perspective. Sadly, its self-seeking and self-glorifying mentality has crept into the church, and even the gospel itself has been subjected to its influence. For example sin is often defined by how it affects man, not how it dishonors God. Salvation is often presented as a means of receiving what Christ offers, not a mandate to obey what He commands. Many modern-day evangelists have reduced the gospel to little more than a formula by which people can live a happy and more fulfilling life. The focus has shifted from God’s glory to man’s benefit.
What higher or more noble purpose could life afford? “Forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,” Paul said he pressed “on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:13-14). Keep that goal clearly in mind in all you do today. By doing so your day will be to the praise of God’s glory!
Such a convoluted gospel fuels the fire of self-love and self-exaltation.
As believers we know better than that. We know that the purpose of life is to glorify God. That means living to His glory is to govern everything we do.
Suggestions for Prayer
• Praise God for His preeminence in all things.
• Pray for opportunities to speak of His preeminence to others, remembering that they will see Him in your actions as well as your words.
For Further Study
Read Job 38; 42:6.
• How did God convince Job of His surpassing knowledge and power?
• What was Job’s response?
From Drawing Near by John MacArthur Copyright © 1993. Used by permission of Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton, IL 60187