Psalm 19:1 says that “the heavens declare the glory of God.” We usually take that to mean that the stars are so magnificent that they give us a glimpse of God’s glory. That’s true, that’s one of the reasons stars exist. But this verse also lays the foundation that will help us understand the purpose of the heavens. God created the heavens, that is, the stars and the galaxies and the solar systems—to speak of his glory. In other words, the created universe has a purpose, and it’s purpose is to visibly display the invisibly glory of God. We can’t see God, but we can see the stars, and the stars exist to tell us something of the magnitude of the Creator. The purpose of the universe is to put God’s glory on display.
Proverbs 16:4 says that “the Lord has made everything for its purpose, even the wicked for the day of trouble.” What a profound statement! So not only the heavens have a purpose, every event in the universe has a purpose. Even wicked people have a purpose. God makes this perfectly clear when he tells Pharaoh that the reason he raised him up: “But for this purpose I have raised you up, to show you my power, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth” (Exodus 9:16). The evil Pharaoh served his intended purpose.
Paul takes this a step further in Colossians. “For by [Jesus] all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.” Paul says that everything was created through Jesus and for Jesus. The fascinating part is that Paul specifically mentions a class of creation he calls “dominions, rulers and authorities.” These terms are almost always used to refer to the spiritual realm, demonic and angelic. Paul’s statement here is massive: He’s saying everything was created by Christ, for Christ—even angels and demons. Here we see it again: everything was created for a purpose, and that purpose is to exalt Jesus Christ.
If the wicked Pharaoh was used by God to bring him glory; if Satan and the demons will ultimately serve to glorify God—what about us? And the answer is that we too, will serve our purpose. We too, in the end, will bring glory to God. Look at Philippians 2:9-11—“Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” Did you hear that? Every knee in heaven, every knee on earth, every knee under the earth, will ultimately bow the knee to Jesus Christ, to the glory of God the Father. This does not mean that every person will be saved and go to heaven. It does mean that every person will ultimately serve the purpose God created him for: to display his glory.
Yes, God will get glory from you. And he will do it in one of two ways. God will either glory himself by making you an object of his grace, or he will glorify himself by making you an object of his wrath. Remember, the universe is about God displaying the whole spectrum of his character—even the aspects of God that make us a little uncomfortable. God will either glorify himself by making you an object by which he displays the glory of his mercy, or by making you an object by which his displays the justice of his wrath. God will use you on the canvas of the universe to show all the creation what kind of God he is.