February 5, 2006
Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth
not to be ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth. II Timothy 2:15
Destiny - Part 2
by Jack Northart
The definitions, of the word, "destiny" are: 1) The inevitable or necessary fate to which a particular person or thing is destined; one's lot. 2) A predetermined course of events considered as something beyond human power or control. 3) The power or agency thought to predetermine events.
Are there predetermined events that are considered as something beyond human control? Of course there are! However, they must be differentiated from what God does as a result of man's response to Him, and from what He does to bless mankind in spite of man's failings.
For example, the resurrection of Jesus Christ was unstoppable. No human on earth could hinder, interrupt or stop it from happening. God raised Jesus from the dead at exactly the moment it had been promised.
For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.
There are many other examples in God's Word of events being foretold and then seeing them come to pass. There are also events that have been foretold to happen in our future that are still waiting to happen, and there is nothing on earth that can stop it. However, this does not mean that God forces people to do certain things in order to fulfill a prophecy of Scripture. This has been one of the presumptions that has been made through the centuries. Some of it has stemmed from a verse of Scripture that has been translated into English from Greek in a particular way. It is regarding the record of the birth of Jesus Christ.
Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
The words, "that it might be fulfilled" are also found in John 13:18 referring to Judas betraying Jesus. This phrase in the Greek is hina pl?r?th?, and is in the subjunctive mood, meaning that it indicates a result rather than a purpose. A better way of translating this could be, "with the result that it was fulfilled."
Mary was not forced to accept the fact that she was going to give birth to the Messiah, rather she decided that she wanted it to happen by her free will decision.
And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.
Could she have turned down the offer that God was making to her to give birth to Jesus? Yes, she could have. God wasn't going to violate Mary's freedom of will. God knew ahead of time how Mary would respond so that when Gabriel spoke the prophecy of the coming events in her life, they came to pass.
The same was true for Jesus when he decided to accept what had to been done to accomplish our redemption and salvation. He knew the torture and pain and suffering that he would have to go through. At one point, he asked his Heavenly Father if there was any other way to complete this task.
And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.
Jesus was well aware of what had to be done, but he didn't want to go through it. He felt very grieved when the moment of a decision had arrived. It was so difficult that it was as if he were going to die from the sorrow itself.
Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.
After considering all his options, HE made the decision to die when he prayed, "...nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." They did not take his life, he gave his life for us.
Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.
In our day and time, God has given His children the challenge to accept the things that He has set before them, but it is still our decision to accept them or not. He lovingly implores us to live and walk for Him.
I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.
We are not being forced to do anything for God. We decide to do what God wants when we renew our minds to what He has put forth in His Word.
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
He has redeemed us. He has sanctified us. He has justified us. He has made us more than conquerors. He has given us a life that is more than abundant. He has already seated us in the heavenlies. He has forgiven us. To renew our minds to these wonderful truths, we must change the way we think about God and ourselves.
There is no need to wonder about whether God likes us or not, or if He is going to bless us or not because HE ALREADY HAS!
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.
God is good. God is love. God wants us to respond to the love He has already given to us, instead of trying to be a better person so that He will love us more.
I John 4:10-11
Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
Not when we were good enough, but when we were dead in tresspasses and sin, God sent His Son to be the full payment for our sins. It is now up to us, by the freedom of our will to walk in this wonderful love that He gave to us. He is not going to force us. He is not a puppeteer controlling us and making us love; no, not in the least. He has put that responsibility on us to do it.
Is there a final destiny for God's children? Yes, when Christ returns to gather the saints together.
I Thessalonians 4:14-17
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent [precede] them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
When Christ returns to gather us together, then we will live with the Lord forever. The moment that we decided to accept Christ, God made all the arrangements for us for all eternity. Our destination is prepared for us. Until that time, it is up to us to live for Him and prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Retutn to main page