Genesis 50:20: But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
If there is anything you must seek to understand, it is God’s purpose. Prophet Amos asked: can two walk together except they are in agreement (Amos 3:3)? We cannot walk with God except we are in agreement with him in his purpose. And who won’t want to walk with God? That is the highest level of existence there is. The bible says that Enoch walked with God and he was not (Genesis 5:24), he stepped into a higher plane of existence.
God wants to share his purpose with us so that we can walk with him. He doesn’t want us to walk like fools but to understand what his will is (Ephesians 5:15-17). Knowing the will of God is not just for some super spiritual people, it is the calling of every child of God.
To the Israelites, the bible says, God showed His acts while he made His ways known to Moses (Psalm 103:7). The bible says that it is the glory of God to conceal a thing but the honour of kings to search out a matter (Proverbs 25:2). We must be bent on understanding the purpose of God. But you must hunger and thirst for it (Matthew 5:6), because He doesn’t give his pearls to swine (Matthew 7:6), who puts no value on it.
To the Roman, Paul wrote that God’s purpose is to work all things for our good end (Romans 8:28). In the focus verse, Joseph explains to his brothers that there was a higher purpose that all the bad experiences that they put Him through, served.
He did not have any anger against his bothers because he understood the purpose of God that everything served. He had an insight into why God allowed him to go through all he went through. But the brothers, operating at a lower plane of understanding, thought that he still held a grudged against them (Genesis 50:15-21).
When you see from God’s point of view, you will not hold a grudge against anybody. Jesus understood the purpose for his crucifixion thereof he did not have any grudged against his “crucifiers.” He said that God should forgive them because they don’t know what they are doing (Luke 23:34). He so understood his purpose for going to the cross, that when Peter suggested that he should not allow himself to be killed, he rebuked him, saying that at that moment, he is the “Satan”, his worst enemy (Matthew 16:21-23). He asked in another place, should I not drink the cup my father has given me to drink? (John 18:11) (He was referring to his crucifixion) He said that, while preventing Peter from putting up a defense for him, when he was to be arrested.
Paul prayed for the church in Ephesus that the eyes of their understanding be enlightened, so that they may know the hope of their calling (Ephesians 1:15-18). Also, in another place, he explained that we have been created in Christ Jesus for good works which God had preordained that we should walk in (Ephesians 2:10). We should walk in the reality of the purpose of God for our lives and not allow anything to derail us.
Jonah was derailed because of extraneous considerations from going in the way of God. God called him to deliver His message to Nineveh, to tell them of an impending judgment but he decided to move in the opposite direction, which landed him in trouble in the belly of a fish.
Do you feel right now that you in a tight corner? Maybe it is because you have refused to embrace the purpose of God and have been thrown into your own belly of a fish.
God called Jeremiah to deliver his word to the Israel (Jeremiah 1:5-10), but the going was not good because of the intensity of the opposition he faced along the way. But God had told him that he should not be afraid of the faces of the people, that wherever he sends him he shall go and whatever he sends him to say he shall say.
There was a time he said he is no longer interested in delivering the word of God (Jeremiah 20:7-18), because it was not well received by the people, but eventually he continued, saying God’s word is like fire shut up in his bones. That was how merged with the purpose of God he was that he could not do otherwise. Paul said that necessity is laid on him, and “woe is me if I preach not the gospel (1Corinthians 9:16).” That means that when it comes to the preaching the gospel, Paul was “merged” with the purpose of God.
Peter wrote that growth can be defined by the measure of the knowledge of Christ and His grace that we have (2Peter 3:18). Knowledge is what understanding is based on. The reason we have the bible is so that we can experience the knowledge of God. Anyone who attacks the true knowledge of God, who attacks the truthfulness of the stories in the bible, or describe one part as being inferior to the other, as some are saying that the words of Paul should be seen as inferior to the words of Jesus, are undermining the authority inherent in the word of God.
When you realise how Jesus used the scriptures, it dissolves all the doubt on the authority. He said that the scriptures testify of him (John 5:29). And who is he? – The word (John 1:1-5). The Word on the Word of God is the Word of God. Anyone who says the Bible is not the Word of God is deceived.
God says that He magnifies his word above his name (Psalm 138:2). There is nothing higher in authority than the word of God (as captured in the 66 books of the bible). To reject the authority of the scriptures is to reject God. It is to create another god according to the image of your own misgivings.
The bible is the communication of God. Of course it is more potent in your heart and in your mouth than in an inanimate sense on the pages of the book, but how will you get it in your mouth and in your mind if it is not fist in a book or other technological devices?
Paul says that the whole of scriptures are given by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and are profitable to give guidance, correction and rebuke (2Timothy 3:16). Once you reduce the authority of the word of God in your own opinion, then you reject the possible effects in your life.
The hearing of the word of God is meant to create faith in us (Romans 10:17), but when you don’t see it as the word of God, it will not yield as it should in your life, since it will be unable to produce faith in you. It is God who was guiding the hands of those who chose the 66 books of the bible.
The Old Testament books were already codified in the first century church. That was why the Berean Jews were able to check the facts as presented by Paul with their own copies of the scriptures (Acts 17:10-12). Throughout the New Testament the words of the Old Testament were quoted and regarded as scriptures, even by Jesus. It was a common reference book, though interpretation may differ on some points, at different times.
Peter wrote that the prophecy of scriptures were written when holy men were moved by the Spirit of God (2Peter 1:19-21). They were written to give an insight about God’s dealing with humanity down the centuries, with an emphasis on God’s people Israel chosen as his vehicle on the earth. The Old Testament chronicles their call and their failure in that wise.
The New Testament revealed the person of the son of God and how his death results in the salvation of the world. But the Old Testament was the foundation on which the new is based.
The salvation plan of God was carried out in the gospels, explained in the acts and the epistles, and culminated in the book of revelation.
Christ was promised in the old, manifested in the gospel; his body, the church, was unveiled in the book of Acts, and the epistles revealed the dynamics of the knowledge of him in the church, while the book of revelation revealed the culmination of time, how this age will be brought to a close. The whole of the New Testament were written by people who saw Jesus physically during his time on earth and others like Mark, Luke were very close associates of the 12 apostles of Jesus.
Paul bestrode the New Testament like a colossus, writing many of the books. His testimony concerning Jesus and the church is not less potent than others. Peter a “chief” among the apostles, acknowledged that the writings of Paul should be regarded as scriptures. He said he wrote those words based on God’s wisdom manifested in him (2Peter 3:15-16). The only book in the New Testament with disputed authorship is Hebrews, but it does contradict the words in the other books, and from earliest times it was regarded as scriptures.