What Does Scripture Say About the Purpose of Life?

God knew we would ponder on this life and ask about our purpose. This is why He gives us answers about the meaning of life in His Word.

Contributing Writer
Updated Apr 08, 2024
What Does Scripture Say About the Purpose of Life?

What is the purpose of life? People of different backgrounds and religious affiliations answer in many ways when asked this question. Responses vary from connecting purpose to vocation or stating that life is about a meaningful and fulfilling line of work. In contrast, others claim it revolves around doing good deeds, gaining wisdom, or carrying out responsibilities. Then, some say the purpose of life lies within our health and longevity.

Maybe this is why we see endless messages on how to love life by seeking passions that bring about happiness or finding many ways to perform certain services that will give platitudes and warm fuzzies. Not to mention the surplus of advice on staying fit and healthy with fad diets backed by scientific results. We all seek ways to live as a seemingly “good person.”

While each of these things in and of itself are not necessarily bad, they are focused on feelings and our innate need just to be enough. Yet, these actions, if you will, only dish out momentary moments of gratification and only give us a good life, sometimes. They completely (and sadly) miss the mark on offering us an abundant life filled with long-lasting and fulfilling hope.

So, what is the purpose of life? Why are we here? Where did we come from? Is it all about love, wealth, self-development, wisdom, service, or happiness?

We all find ourselves asking these questions at some point as we yearn to understand this existence and realm of reality. Otherwise, what is the point?

Thankfully, God knew we would ponder on this life and ask about our purpose. This is why He gives us answers about the meaning of life in His Word. It addresses such things as vocation, service, and our overall health. Yet the overall message is one that vastly contradicts the world’s view. As we quickly learn, this life has nothing to do with us but has everything to do with our faithful and loving God!

We Are Not Here by Chance

We must first recognize that we are not here by chance; God created the world and everything in it – on purpose (Proverbs 16:4). He had and still has a plan for everything He creates, and it is more than just our own lives, it’s about all living creatures as a whole, including sound and evil.

Good vs. Evil

While God created everything for good (1 Timothy 4:4), God’s creatures still choose to go against His will. Satan is the first cherub to defy God, allowing his inner pride and jealousy to manifest and be his ultimate demise (Ezekial 28).

While it would make sense then that God created Satan, then called Lucifer, it may bring into question why or was good. The answer is rather complex, but in the beginning, this fallen angelic host was included in the “everything” that was created as good (Romans 11:36, Colossians 1:16-17). After all, being good, holy, and pure, God would only create such things, whether in heaven or on earth, that is of Himself, originally fashioned as “very good.”

However, according to 2 Peter 2:4 and Jude 6, Satan leads a charge of angels to defile God. This is where things went grossly wrong. While many questions may circulate as to why this happened or why an all-knowing God would have created Lucifer in the first place, we must fall back on the first point that God has a purpose for all things He creates, including those that entice evil.

God can and will use both good and evil to accomplish His will. We can take comfort in that. It’s also important to grasp that while we live in a world riddled by evil and sin, God did not create moral evil, that is an individual’s or being’s choice. We have that choice, too.

This is where trusting God and His ultimate plan and purpose for life come in.

God is in Control

Our hope in this lost and fallen world is that no matter what happens, God is in control. That means He holds the past, present, and future. The very nature of our God is omnipresent and omniscient, meaning He can be everywhere at once and is all-knowing. He can break bears of time while appointing a time for everything (Ecclesiastes 3:1).

God is good and intends to work all things out for good. That means no matter what. We see this theme intertwined through various stories throughout the Scriptures. When Joseph told his brothers not to be afraid as they meant evil against him, but God meant it for good (Genesis 50:19-22), it shows a beautiful depiction of the very nature of God. Joseph trusted God with life.

Moses also trusted God. So did Noah and Abraham. Yet, in every story, we see conflict, turmoil, and the torment of sin. There was a lack of obedience and trust in God. Moses, a man of integrity considered the most important prophet, trusted his ability (Numbers 20:12). Noah, a man of honor who served the Lord for over 600 years, fell into disgrace (Genesis 9:18-29). Abraham, the “father of faith,” disobeyed God, lacking trust in God’s promise to have a child, and took matters into his own hands (Genesis 22:9-13). Even still, God turned it all for good, and a valuable lesson was given to past, present, and future generations.

Adam and Eve, who had no reason to distrust God, still disobeyed Him and ate from the Tree of Knowledge. They chose a plan of wickedness and their plan over God’s, and the consequences are dire for the entirety of humanity. However, their story is our story, as it marks the beginning of where good meets evil.

These stories have been on repeat since the beginning of time. But God was and still is in control!

We may not always understand or see the behind-the-scenes work that God is doing, but we can rest assured and trust that He is in control, working all things out for good. It may look messy and wrapped up in sin, but thankfully, we serve a relational God full of mercy, grace, and essential life lessons.

God is Relational

God didn’t create the world because He was bored with nothing to do. He created life to delight in and to essentially delight in us (Numbers 14:8)! The goodness of His creation is all a reflection of His nature and starts with a fundamental truth that God is love (1 John 4:16). Due to His great love for us and His nurturing nature, our God is intimate and desires to be a part of our lives.

God wants us to know Him personally and to discover the path to a righteous and whole life. A life that is not merely good but abundant and rich in His love. He wants us to give up our lives and walk in obedience, offering us the way, Truth, and energy (John 14:6 and Matthew 6:33).

Love is the universal theme and heartbeat of the gospel. Because of God’s great love, He gave us His only Son so that we can have eternal life. John 3:16 is the core of our faith and brings into light the purpose for this life. Jesus is an expression of God’s indescribable and profoundly profound love for the entire world that offers a direct pathway to Him!

Did you catch that? God offers us a pathway in this life through Jesus! Due to His unfailing love, He gives us a way to our eternal destiny, all by seeking a relationship with Jesus and abiding in His love.

So, Why Are You Here?

By now, we could say the purpose of this life as a faithful believer would be to realize we were not created by chance and that because there is good and evil, we have the choice to honor God and trust Him with our lives. It also gives us great comfort knowing that God is in control and offers a life beyond this one.

Yet, that still doesn’t answer the question of, “Why me?” or “Why am I here, and what’s my purpose?”

Is our purpose to be happy with God and to glorify Him? Yes! Is it our purpose to trust Him and obey Him? Yes! Is our purpose to walk in the ways of Jesus – yes, and yes!! That is the core (and heart) of where our love for God and the sacrifice of Jesus meets our purpose.

Christianity flips the script on this life and our purpose because it calls for us to cast our “self” aside and place God front and center.

When we do that, we find that the real meaning of life is about recognizing that our whole identity must be a reflection of Christ. It is about loving and seeing others the way Christ does. It’s about serving others with a grateful heart, as Christ modeled. It’s about valuing people and meeting them where they are with mercy and grace, as Christ has shown us. It’s walking in the way Christ did.

We are here to love and lead others to Christ! That is our purpose, and that is the purpose of life for a believer! Praise be to God for our Lord Jesus Christ!

Photo Credit: © Unsplash/Paul Skorupska

Alicia SearlAlicia Searl is a devotional author, blogger, and speaker that is passionate about pouring out her heart and pointing ladies of all ages back to Jesus. She has an education background and master’s in literacy.  Her favorite people call her Mom, which is why much of her time is spent cheering them on at a softball game or dance class. She is married to her heartthrob (a tall, spiky-haired blond) who can whip up a mean latte. She sips that goodness while writing her heart on a page while her puppy licks her feet. Visit her website at aliciasearl.com and connect with her on Instagram and Facebook.

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