Monday, December 19, 2011

God Knows and Meets Our Greatest Needs

[Hebrews 9:11-14, 10:1-4 and 11-14]
By Gerald Cowan
     It can be said in this way: If our greatest need had been for information, God would have sent us an educator. If our greatest need had been for technology, God would have sent us a scientist, a technician, or an engineer. If our greatest need had been money and material wealth, God would have sent us a financial adviser, an investment broker. If our greatest need had been pleasure, God would have sent us an entertainer. If our greatest need had been to be served, God would have sent us a servant. If our greatest need had been for freedom, God would have sent us a deliverer.
     We do have a need for information – about God, about our world, and about ourselves. So God sent men inspired by His Spirit to tell us about himself and the world and how to relate to properly to Him and the world. He endowed us with intelligence and rationality; He made us able to investigate and learn how to develop and use the resources at hand. Of course we got sidetracked by the desire to possess more and more of the things that became available to us and God-sent teachers could never convince some of us of the futility and transience of earthly treasures, though they often stressed the point. The search for entertainment is mostly man-made, and God does not supply it. But the need for information about how to relate to God has never gone away, so God’s inspired persons prepared us for life in His kingdom, life in the called-out church of His Son. He revealed through them all we will ever need to know to function properly in the Kingdom/Church of the Lord, to please Him and secure a place in His heaven (1 Peter 1:1-9, 2 Peter 1:3-4).
     Jesus was called The Teacher, and was surely the greatest teacher ever in things pertaining to God and the spirits of men. He knew the mind of God and was able to put God’s will into understandable words for us, to give us a perfectly understandable and applicable object lesson in how to live and please God. In him we could see God and hear God – we could know and experience God for ourselves by following his words and example (John 14:9, 15:1-8). He did not come to entertain us or make us feel good. But he did tell us how to be blessed and how to be a blessing, how to enjoy life – abundant life – how to be truly happy, satisfied, and always rejoicing in God (Mt. 5:1-6, Phil. 4:4). He supplies all our real and abiding needs through His Son, Jesus Christ (Phil. 4:13, 19).
     God knew that our greatest need was not to be free from all others, or to be served by others. We can be submissive to masters, rulers, and other authorities under whom we are placed – that kind of adjustment is required for happiness and satisfaction (Rom. 13:1-7, Eph. 5:21-6:9). Our greatest needs are spiritual. God knew our greatest need would be for the forgiveness of sins, errors and mistakes – whether deliberate and willful or inadvertent and accidental – our weaknesses, failures, shortcomings, and doubts. Our greatest need was for salvation. So God sent us a Savior, a Redeemer and Deliverer for our spirits. He sent a Sacrifice who was able to remove all our sins and give us the peace of mind that can only come from a clean and clear conscience (Heb. 9:26-28, Phil. 4:6-9). In giving himself Jesus became the servant of all, serving and ministering to our greatest needs. His service can be rejected and his gift not received, but if that is the case, nobody else can make up for the loss (John 13:6-17).
     In the process of providing for our salvation God made it possible for us to live in peace with Him and with each other. He also made it possible for us to be at peace within ourselves, with untroubled hearts looking forward to the consummation of all things in heaven (John 14:1-9) where neither He nor we shall ever fade away (1 Peter 1:3-4).
- Gerald Cowan preaches for the Dongola church of Christ in Dongola, IL.  He may be contacted at

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