In my early years of life and even in my early years as a young Christian, I thought that the ultimate goal of Christianity was to get to Heaven! I grew up with a theology that advocated there was nothing really good in this world and that Christians should never have any real involvement with this present age because, after all, we are just pilgrims passing through this unfriendly world! In my youth and in my early Christian years, I thought that the ultimate goal of Christianity was to get to the Pearly Gates and the Streets of Gold!
Much of what I am hearing in Christian circles today is almost the exact opposite! It seems that much of the modern preaching and teaching in Christian circles advocate the ultimate goal of Christianity is to be prosperous in this present world. Many advocate that it is God’s ultimate goal that we “prosper and be in good health.” Many other scriptures are used to advocate that the ultimate goal of Christianity is gold; to be rich, healthy, and wealthy in this present age in this present world!
But what does the Bible really say about the ultimate goal of Christianity? Well, since I have come to some understanding of what Jesus meant about the Kingdom of God (Heaven), things that were once complicated are all so simple to me now! The ultimate goal of Christianity is NOT HEAVEN when we die NEITHER IS IT PROSPERITY IN THIS LIFE! The ultimate goal of Christianity is pronounced in Romans 8:28-29: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (KJV) For the Christian, God works everything together for the good and the “good” in verse 28 is defined in verse 29. The good is that we be conformed to the image of his Son! In other words, if you are a Christian, then God works all things together so that you might BE LIKE JESUS! A Christian, by definition is a follower of Christ and I read somewhere that the term “Christian” can also be defined as: “little Christ.”
Now this fits in perfectly with God’s original plan in the beginning! In Genesis 1:26-28 we read: “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” (KJV) God’s original intent for humanity was that humanity might administrate the Kingdom of God on earth on HIS behalf. Therefore, humanity was created in the image and likeness of God. In Colossian 1:12-15, Paul wrote: “Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.” (NKJ) Do you see that? Paul described Jesus as being “the image of the invisible God.” In Romans, he said that it was God’s predestined plan that we be conformed to the image of HIS SON! Now, if HIS SON is the image of the invisible God and that same invisible God created man in his image and likeness, then the mission of Jesus was really to provide a way for us to be restored back to our original state: Created in the image and likeness of God!
Therefore, the ultimate goal of Christianity is really to restore what was lost in Eden! Adam didn’t lose Heaven in the Garden; he lost dominion! The ultimate goal of Christianity is to take us back to what we were made for! We were not made to occupy Heaven eternally in a spiritual state, nor were we made to be materially prosperous in this world for the sake of prosperity! We were made in the image and likeness of God to have dominion (to administrate the Kingdom of God) over the earth! Therefore, the ultimate goal of Christianity is to put us back where God created us to be! In a place of dominion and authority; not as owners, but as stewards of the Kingdom of God over the earth!