Christians should reflect Jesus to the world so that all can share in the joy of salvation.
What is the goal of the Christian life? Romans 8:29 expresses it this way: “For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters” (emphasis added). This is called sanctification, and it has several stages.
First comes salvation—our redemption from sinfulness through Jesus’ atoning sacrifice. What results is forgiveness of sin, which lets us have a relationship with God.
Next, God gives us opportunity to serve. We were created to do good works in Jesus’ name (Eph. 2:10).
Then comes frustrated inadequacy. This is a necessary part of the journey and can last varying amounts of time. Though difficult, this phase is beautiful because it leads us into total dependence on Jesus, which is the best part of our spiritual life. And it is what brings us closer to our ultimate goal: becoming a reflection of Christ.
Sadly, many Christians don’t reach a point of complete reliance on the Lord. The apostle Paul reminds us to fix our eyes on the goal of maturity in Christ (Phil. 3:14). Learning to die to self is painful, but ironically, it’s the only true way to life.
Bible in One Year: Luke 17-19