The Purposes of God
Who has purposed this against Tyre, the bestower of crowns,
whose merchants were princes, whose traders were the honored of the earth?
The Lord of hosts has purposed it, to defile the pompous pride of all glory,
to dishonor all the honored of the earth. Isaiah 23:8-9
This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through our faith in him. Ephesians 3:11-12
It is not hard to see that the Bible reveals a God Who is over all the earth and all mankind. It is true that He chose Abraham and made a covenant with him and his descendants, but even that covenant included all the families of the earth (Genesis 12:3).
Through Isaiah (and other prophets) God gave warnings and instructions to the Gentile nations around Israel and Judah. Today we read about God’s purposes to bring down the pomposity of Tyre and Sidon. They were proud in their successes, congratulating themselves for their victories and prosperity with no thought for God.
What concern did the God of Israel have for Tyre and Sidon? The same concern He had for all the families of the earth. Their prideful arrogance offended Him, but also drew His mercy and grace as He purposed that His Son would be the Savior of the world, including those from Tyre and Sidon and a thousand other tribes and nations that would come and go through human history.
The mystery of God’s purpose was revealed to Paul and the other apostles and, through their writings, it was revealed to us. God was working out His plan for the fullness of time “to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth” (Ephesians 1:10). This was Paul’s calling, to announce this mystery, the uniting of all in Christ. Jews and Gentiles in Christ are now one with God and with each other. Paul prays that his readers in Ephesus (and beyond) may grasp “the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge” and that they “may be filled with all the fullness of God” (3:19).
Think about it
Press on to know God’s glorious purposes through Jesus Christ. We have only scratched the surface on the eternal purposes of God.
© 2017 John A Carroll Used by permission