Tuesday, February 08, 2011

"A Glorious and Abundant Emanation of His Infinite Fulness of Good": Why God Does What He Does

Sunday I had an opportunity to teach a class on what God has revealed to us in Scripture about his purposes and intentions—why he does what he does. Perhaps the most provocative question to answer what what God reveals about his ultimate ends. In the prep process I found a couple summaries that were helpful, though we spent too much time in the text to consider the quotes. First, Jonathan Edwards in his book, The End for Which God Created the World:
Thus it appears reasonable to suppose, that it was God’s last end, that there might be a glorious and abundant emanation of his infinite fulness of good ad extra, or without himself; and that the disposition to communicate himself, or diffuse his own fulness, was what moved him to create the world.
John Piper published a helpful exposition of Edwards, which includes Edwards' full text.

The last thing I did Saturday night was to read a portion of Spurgeon's Lectures to My Students. And in God's kind providence, this was the very last paragraph I read:
Man cannot be the centre of the theological universe, he is altogether too insignificant a being to occupy such a position, and the scheme of redemption must exist for some other end than that of merely making man happy, or even of making him holy. The salvation of man must surely be first of all for the glory of God; and you have discovered the right form of Christian doctrine when you have found the system that has God in the centre, ruling and controlling according to the good pleasure of his will.

4 comments:

brian said...

. . . to the praise of his glorious grace.

Brandon Clay said...

Such an important consideration - the end of all things. Doesn't that help shape everything else? Thanks for reminding us how Edwards and Spurgeon answered the question.

Stuart Stewardship said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bob R. Roberts said...

This is a beautiful post, Ben. Thanks for sharing.