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Noblesse Oblige – Chapter 2: Noble Purpose

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Noblesse Oblige by Scott Applegate

This book was released by a pastor & author from Westminster, Colorado in 2009.  Scott is the pastor of Novation Church, a non-denominational bible-first church that serves the community each and every day, spreading the Gospel through practical works and teaching. We will publish each chapter weekly, and encourage you to read it and digest it each week in order to search for and live God’s true calling on your life. Through this series you will learn to search for your Noble: Living, Purpose, Vision, Mission, Ability, Faith, Action, Assignments, and Death.

“If God has a purpose for the lives of his people, and if his purpose is discoverable, then nothing could be more important than for us to discern and do it.” John Stott

Chapter #2 Noble Purpose

One of the most important elements of fulfilling your noble obligation is having a clear understanding of what the purpose of your life is all about. There is a lot of buzz about the word purpose today. There are millions of books sold on the subject, seminars on self-help are sold out, and psychologists are not short on business because the human race wants to know it’s purpose.

Many mid-life crises could be avoided if a proper understanding of what our purpose is and how it is to be expressed were understood. Many young people and many elderly people for that matter could experience the fulfillment they long for if they were to embrace the biblical meaning of life.

Most of the people I talk to confuse the purpose of their life with what they do, or the job they happen to find themselves in at the time, or the season of life they find themselves in.

Understand this: My purpose in life is not what I do but rather my purpose comes from who I am and whose I am. What I do is an expression of purpose, but never is it to be confused with what truly is my purpose. What you do, your job etc. will change several times in your life. However, your purpose never changes.

The reality is, your purpose and identity go hand in hand. The question of identity: “Who am I?” and “Why am I here?” is found in Jesus and His purpose for my life. For the Christ-follower the answer to the question of identity is simple, “my identity is found in that I am God’s by creation and by redemption.” Because I am God’s, my life is not my own: “you are not your own, you were bought with a price.” (1 Corinthians 6:19b-20 NIV)

God is my purpose, therefore my dreams, my goals, and plans are submitted to Him. Since God is my Creator and Redeemer, He calls the shots for my life.

God’s intention for us is not restrictive or burdensome. It is actually very freeing. God wants each of us to enter into the amazing life that He has planned for us. Jesus said:

“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness.” (John 10:10 NLT)

That profound four-letter word: L.O.V.E.

The purpose of every person’s life can be summed up in one word: love.

This purpose is wrapped in one statement made by Jesus: “…Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:28-31 NIV)

God created humanity to love, know, and serve Him and to ultimately express love to Him by loving and serving others.

Jesus gives us the cliff notes on all the commands of the Old Testament. The Old Testament contains 613 commands. Jesus sums up the point of these laws by quoting from two portions of scripture, Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Leviticus 19. Jesus sums up the Ten Commandments in this statement as well. The first four of the Ten

Commandments regard loving God and the second six are about loving others as we love ourselves.

So many people struggle trying to find God’s will for their lives, but if you and I understand putting God and others first, the will of God finds us. Another way to say it is: if you put God and others first, whatever you do will be the will of God. When we make loving God and others the number one priority in our lives, we will be walking in God’s divine intention for our lives.

This divine intention is for every human who has ever lived or will live, whether they believe in God or not.

The failure to not put God and others first is the root of all sin and all the problems in the world.

There is only one person who perfectly put God first and others first.

There is only one who perfectly knew and obeyed the will of God.

There is only one person who ever truly “lived the Christian life.”

That one person is Jesus Christ. Jesus died on the cross to bring us into a right relationship with God and to free us from the destructive life of self-centeredness.

If you love God and you love others, you are ready and free to live your life as you wish. If God is first and others are first, God trusts you to live a life worthy of His purpose.

Erwin McManus challenges us when he writes: “I am convinced the great tragedy is not the sins we commit, but the life we fail to live…the abundant life that Jesus promises is ushered in through the choices we make in the ordinary moments of life…we must move beyond simply choosing between right and wrong. We must resolve not only to leave the path of doing evil, but also passionately pursue a life of doing good,” (McManus, 2002)

Lets not settle for an easy Christian life. In fact, there is no such thing as an “easy Christian life.”

We must choose to daily pursue God’s divine intention of love for Him and others. Inside each of us there is a desire to make a significant impact on the world we live in. I also know at the core of our beings there is a gnawing sense of failure and guilt that maybe we are not loving God and others, as we ought.

What should we do? We need to make a choice today to not find our purpose in people pleasing, our careers, comfort, or money, but make the choice to arrange your life around serving God by loving others?

Are you ready to step out in faith and fulfill the noble obligation God has for you?

Noble questions to ponder

Have you found yourself confusing your purpose in life with what you do for a living? If so, how?

What evidence is there in your life that you are a loving person?

What could you start doing today to focus yourself on becoming more of a loving person?

What might it cost you to become a more loving person?

Comment your thoughts below and let us know what you think about these questions.

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