Last night the students I have the opportunity to lead engaged in a “Theology Q&A Night.” I took questions submitted anonymously from the students and spent the service attempting to answer their questions. There were many good questions but this one, what is the meaning to life, really struck me. All the time I hear of people looking for “God’s will for my life” or something of the sort. I am going to share with you what I shared with the students, this is the meaning of life.
Ecclesiastes 1:2 says this, “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher,
vanity of vanities! All is vanity.” Another way of saying this would sound this way, “Meaningless! Meaningless! Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” King Solomon wrote this verse and was a man of great wealth, many wives, beautiful palaces, and anything he wanted. He once wrote anything his heart desired, he pursued. Yet, this is how he summed like up: meaningless. A man who had all he wanted and gained so much described it all as meaningless. Why? Because created us for something more. Something more than we can experience in our finite lives in the here and now. Ecclesiastes 3:11 says, “He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.”
Go back to Genesis 1:26, man was initially created in the image of God. Created to reflect the image of the invisible God, sometimes that Christ did perfectly according to Colossians 1. In the first three chapters with that in mind we see four things that God set aside for humanity to provide fulfillment in life.
1) He created humanity to have dominion of the earth (Genesis 1:26)
2) He created humanity to work (Genesis 2:15)
3) He created humanity as social beings (Genesis 2:18-25)
4) He created humanity to fellowship with Him (Genesis 3:8)
These things gave life meaning to humanity, fulfillment in life, and responsibility in life. However, the fall that happens in Genesis 3 with the ushering in of sin deeply distorted all of this. The good news is when we read Revelation it will all come full-circle and will be restored once more as God intended, but we are not there yet. So we ask, I am here today so what is the meaning until that is resorted? Real meaning in life, right now and for eternity, is found in the restoration of our relationship wit God that was lost with Adam and Eve’s fall into sin. That relationship can only be restored through Jesus Christ.
Real meaning in life does not stop though at crying out to Christ to save you. Rather, real meaning in life is one surrenders, submits, and beings to follow Christ as a disciple. Learning of who He is, spending time with Him in His Word, communing with Him in prayer, and walking on obedience in light of His commands.
To the unbeliever that may sound unappealing, or even to a Christian. To submit your life and give God a blank check and say I will do whatever you call me to. Look to these verses though to prove doing that will give you the meaning you are searching for:
“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light”
“I came that they may have life and have it abundantly”
“Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus
Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it”
What these verses are saying is you have to make your mind up. We can continue to seek and lead our own lives, which will result in emptiness, or we can fully submit to follow God and pursue after Him, as He pursues us, and let Him have control of our lives. This will lead to a life of joy, fulfillment, purpose, satisfaction, and contentment. This is what God wants for us. It may not result in the easiest life, but it will result in one that makes a difference for the Kingdom and one the glorifies God. The meaning of life is to glorify God in everything that we do.
Summed up: The meaning of life is to know God and enjoy Him forever.