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Why? Glorify God

Purpose, Mission & Vision  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Salvation is offered to all who call on the name of the Lord and is all done by God for the Glory of God.



A question The board and I have been going through for the past year is Where are we going? Where do we go from Here?
It all started, wanting to plan and to bring clarity and intentionality to all that we are doing in all areas of our ministry. Whether it be our camp ministry, our children’s ministry, youth ministry or whatever we do as a church. When we are all pulling in the same direction, when are all pulling to where the Heavenly Father would like us to be it is amazing what He will do through us. We found this exciting, to see where God is leading and to start heading in that direction.
I used an illustration the last congregation mtg we had and I want to use it again. Think back to when people travelled by horse and buggy. When hooking multiple horses to a wagon it is done in such a way as to have the horses all pulling in the same direction. Now imagine trying to hook one horse to the front, one horse to each side, one horse to the back one on the roof. Now you tell them to giddy up and start to pull. They are all going to pull in different directions and the wagon is going to go no where and may even fall apart from the strain of trying to go in so many directions.
It is easy to just do stuff and hope it works to grow the Kingdom of God but things work much better when we are all pulling in the same direction heading towards God’s will for our church. So I wanted to break down where we are going and what it means for us as a church so we can start thinking strategically about how to get where God is leading us.
Mission and vision leak, if you do not continually look at it and explain what it means then it gets forgotten about. But this is what are church is called to do, what we are about.
Purpose - answers why, goes back to who God is and why he made us and why are we here, why do we exist. We where made for His pleasure to bring glory to Jesus.
Mission - what - what are we supposed to be doing while we are here on earth. What is it that God wants us to be doing as a body of believers. It helps us all to pull in the same direction.
Vision - what success looks like. It is not seeing the future, but brings clarity as to what we are about. If we accomplish our mission what would this look like in the lives of people.
we are going to spend some time on this to see what God is calling us to, and invite you to get on board with where God is leading us a church. We invite you to join us on this journey.
So we start out with Our purpose - At Cornerstone, we exist to, Glorify God as we love each other and make disciples.
We begin with the question why? This is what purpose answers, Why? And the first part of this answer, and one of the most important is that we are to Glorify God. There are many passages on Glorifying God, last summer we went through that in Psalm 23 but this time I want to go through a passage in Isaiah-43
The main idea we are going to go through?
Salvation is offered to all who call on the name of the Lord and is all done by God for the Glory of God.

vs 1 and 7

There is an old Hymn that comes to mind as we start to go through this “To God be the Glory great things He hath done”. What a reminder, in all things we need to remember that to God go the Glory, in all things we do. Isaiah 43 contains what we call a Chiasm. This is a fancy word used to describe a common Grammatical tool for the time. We have gone through it before. But as a reminder, it is when the author uses repeating ideas to make a point. where usually the main idea can be found in the point. SO that is How I am going to go through the passage today. It just makes everything more clear as you will see as this is how the passage was written.
That being said what we see here in this passage is that everything that is said is done by God for the Glory of God. We need to remember this when we look at the why that we are here. Everything we have, everything that we do, the salvation that is offered is by God for the Glory of God. But how does that work?
we start out with Verse one and 7, as they are pairs of eachother according to how the passage was written. Isaiah 43:1
Isaiah 43:1 (CSB)
Now this is what the Lord says— the one who created you, Jacob, and the one who formed you, Israel— “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine.
The First word we see is “Now This”. This is similar to when you see the word therefore. we go back to the previous passage to see what he means by that. You see as always, context is Key. The Israelite's where coming under judgement for their sin. Blind Eyes and deaf ears where something they where accused of having. They needed to get their acts together but there where consequences coming. But through the glory of the Lord there was a promise coming.
Isaiah starts this passage by reminding them who is talking to them. Echoing the creation account in Genesis they are reminded that it is God who created you, it is He who formed you and gave you life. He is in control.
but whatever they have done in the past, what is being said is that it is forgotten, there is something more important. That our identity is not in what we have done or not done, it is not in what we have accomplished but rather our identity is in the Lord, our creator.
thus says the Lord it tells us. We need not fear that the Lord has abandoned us for we can be redeemed by Him. Through nothing we have done but rather by God for the Glory of God. He calls us by name, we can be His children and be found as His for He has redeemed us.
this is echoed in Isaiah 43:7
Isaiah 43:7 (CSB)
everyone who bears my name and is created for my glory. I have formed them; indeed, I have made them.”
Why are we redeemed? Why are we called by Name? Why are we not to fear? It is because of the one who created us has done so for His glory and all He says will come to pass. We where and redeemed for one purpose, for the Glory of the Lord.
the offer for redemption, for salvation is their for all who call on the name of the Lord, to get out of your life of sin and bondage into the joy of the Lord. As His children we bear His name and we must shine with the Glory of the Lord.
Our purpose as a church? Why are we hear? we are here first of all to bring Glory to God. This life is not about us but we are created and formed by God. We are redeemed by what God has done so therefore we need to give the glory to the Lord alone.
This passage reminds us again and again that we are not here do to our own merit or ingenuity but rather we are here by the grace of God and all we do needs to point back to Him. We are redeemed by the work of God for the Glory of God. If what we are doing is putting glory on our own name or seeking ourselves then we need to question what we are doing. Why do we exist? Why do we have Salvation? We are we redeemed as the Body of Christ? for the Glory of God,.

vs 2, 5-6

Before I run out of time we need to move on to more of the passage. Verse 2 and its pair verse 5-6. Isaiah 43:2
Isaiah 43:2 (CSB)
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you and the rivers will not overwhelm you, When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched and the flame will not burn you.
Now this almost seems like it is saying that we can literally do this. Pass through waters, walk through the fire and you will be okay as long as you are a child of God. Like Paul who was bitten by a viper and just shook it off. That is not what this is saying. I may have took this a little to literally in College when me and my friends would take hot coals out of a bonfire and play a game of hot potato with it. Not the smartest thing to do I guess.
You have to rather think Poetically when it comes to this verse. What this is doing is saying what it is like belonging to God, becoming one of His children. It is a hope that we are allowed to cling to but not in the way that you might think. Preservation in the midst of trials because of the presence of God in our lives is what this is talking about. So dont go trying to walk through a bonfire this summer thinking that is what this is talking about. “The Lord has not redeemed you so that you might enjoy pleasures and luxuries … but so that you should be prepared for enduring all kinds of evils.” Calvin
Never has God said that there is going to be no hard times but rather that we can endure them for His glory and because of His presence in us. SO as we seek to figure out why we are here for the Glory of God we can rest assured that the trials we face we can go through because of the Lord in us. Again not about us but about God.
this same though is echoed and continued in Isaiah 43:5-6
Isaiah 43:5–6 (CSB)
Do not fear, for I am with you; I will bring your descendants from the east, and gather you from the west. I will say to the north, ‘Give them up!’ and to the south, ‘Do not hold them back!’ Bring my sons from far away, and my daughters from the ends of the earth—
You see we do not have to fear. It does not say that we wont go through the water and fire, that we will go through it but fear does not need to be an option as we go through it for the if we belong to the Lord and are following Him and seeking His glory then His strength will pull us through.
It is a scary thing to think about the future and move towards God’s will for us. We do not know what the future holds just that the reason why we are here, our purpose for where we are going is to Glorify the Lord. He is our strength and our song, He is the reason we have to live.

vs 3-4

and then the last, why we do all of this, why it is so important in all things to focus on Giving the glory to God.
Isaiah 43:3 (CSB)
For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, and your Savior. I have given Egypt as a ransom for you, Cush and Seba in your place.
Did you hear that? for I am the Lord your God. The self existent One, the Creator of Heaven and earth, the Alpha and the Omega, the Holy One He is our God. There is so much involved in this short statement. but what comes next kind of floors me. We have this heavy statement showing the power and the majesty of God whom we worship and yet there is another side to all of this. Isaiah 43:4
Isaiah 43:4 (CSB)
Because you are precious in my sight and honored, and I love you, I will give people in exchange for you and nations instead of your life.
The Lord our God, the glorified self existent one, as His children we are precious in His sight. He cares for us and loves us. What about if you do not know Him? The Lord is patient and long suffering but will not be like that forever. This is the type of love and grace offered to you, all it takes is for you to turn your life to God in everything. God can not be a part of sin, we need to remember that.
If you are a child of God now, hold on to this promise, Redemption is given to you but it is for the glory of the Lord. We are precious in the sight of God, He loves us but for His glory and through the blood of Jesus He loves us. Take hold of this promise as we walk through the hard times with Jesus.

So What?

Lets tie this all together for you. Your purpose At Cornerstone, we exist to, Glorify God as we love each other and make disciples. So it all starts out with Glorifying God. This is not by accident that we phrased it this way. I have seen people forget about this, especially now. We have churches preaching politics from the pulpit forgetting that we are here for the furthering of the Kingdom of God. Sometimes we have forgotten that our lives are not our own but that we are bought with a price and all we do goes back to God. I could have gone to a lot of places to show this, look through the book of Job, Look through Psalm 23 so many places that point it all back to Jesus. But what we see here I love where it reminds us again that Salvation is offered to all who call on the name of the Lord and is all done by God for the Glory of God. A few things that we need to remember from this passage.
It all starts with God getting the Glory in all things.
We deal with redemption and hope in God but unless we remember that it is only through God and By God and for God we are missing the point. It is not about you, or Cornerstone Church even but the Kingdom of God. Why we are here is for and because of God if what we are doing does not point back to God then we are doing something wrong.
Our Redemption is for the Glory of God
Our purpose in salvation, why we are part of the family of God is not to make ourselves look good but to shine the light of Jesus on to others. That being said You have heard it said that God loves everyone and has a wonderful plan for your life. But God can not be a part of sin. Redemption is offered to all who call on the name of the Lord. Do Not wait till it is to Late. The Lord’s Patience will not last forever.
In the Glory of God we do not need to fear any trials that come our way.
As we live and seek the glory of God in all things, we are still going to go through the fire and water. We are still going to have trials that come our way. But if we are seeking God in all things we need to be reminded that there need not be any fear living our lives for God’s glory. He will give us the strength we need to go through.
There is great hope and joy in the fact that we are not the hero of the story, we are not the ones the story is written about. There is great hope in knowing that it is not by our strength or power that we walk through this life but rather if you are a child of God, redeemed by the blood of Jesus then it is God that will give you strength. That is why in all that we do, it begins with the glory of God.
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