Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Pleasures of God, or, a 'God-centered' post in which John 17 makes it all about us again, or, a post in which I compare God's glory to pizza

The other day in Bible class I asked the girls: "Why did God create the world?" A couple of girls suggested that it could have been because God was bored or perhaps lonely. A rebuttal to those charges (of God being bored or lonely) came immediately to my mind.

The vast amount of material in the Bible regarding God's satisfaction with Christ, and Christ's glory that he possessed even before the world began, prove that God is self-sufficient. Or as perhaps John Piper would say: God is happy without us. A human being may need to share experiences with others; but God is content with himself.

Here is an example of God's satisfaction with himself. Christ prays for us in John 17. Christ wants us to have something: a certain 'glory.'

My brother may say to me, "I had some great pizza at the corner store. I want you to have it." He wouldn't say to me: "I want you to try this pizza I had the other day. It had no taste and I will probably never buy it again." No, he wants me to have the pizza because it is good pizza. He wants to share it with me because it is something good.

1. The glory that Christ wanted us to have must have been something good, or he wouldn't have wanted to share it with us.

2. That 'something good' was something that Christ had with God.

3. That 'something good' was going on without us.

Later in John 17 Christ is still referring to something that he and God had, before we existed.

The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one.
... that they all may be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given to me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one...

Father I desire that they also... may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world.

So what I'm getting at is...

Christ and God were pretty happy without us. (sorry those of you finding this out for the first time. I remember the first blow to my spiritual self-centeredness: my first reading of Revelation 4:11)

But Christ wants us to share that happiness.

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