What is the meaning of life? This is one of the most pondered and perpetually debated questions known to man.
Genesis 1:27 says “So God created man in his own image…”. The determination of the meaning of life is dependent on who or what humans really are. God is an eternal spiritual being. C S Lewis wrote “You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.” Man is a created spiritual being. The eternal option is open if the right choices are made.
The ultimate purpose of the physical phase of the spiritual entity’s life is to fulfill the promise made in Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the thoughts and plans I have for you,” says the Lord, “for welfare and peace and not for evil.” The day a man is born God has a plan in place.
God had a plan for Adam. Death was not originally part of that plan. The meaning or purpose of Adam’s life was to walk with God in the Garden of Eden, to leave with his wife and to tend the garden. God also gave Adam free will to make choices on his own. God told Adam he could eat of any tree in the garden, except in Genesis 2:17 he said, “but of the tree of knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat it you shall surely die.”
When Death Became Reality
Because Adam did choose to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, physical death became a reality. Because of the choices made by Adam and Eve the path to eternal life would be much more difficult. God, being perfect, made perfect adjustments to his original plan. He told Adam in Genesis 3:17, “Cursed is the ground for your sake; In toil, you shall eat of it.” Physical life would be much more difficult for men for many generations.
Man’s Relationship with God
The original purpose in life was to have a one on one relationship with God. A few men were able to do that by exercising absolute faith in God’s promises. Abraham was one of those. The crucified Christ made this relationship with God and the resulting gift of eternal life a possible reality for all men through the final covenant with God. John 3:16 states, “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life.”
God created man in his image. Both physical and spiritual. The physical is only a temporary vessel to carry the spiritual to a level of maturity necessary to transition into the eternal destination. That is the purpose of human existence. First being born into this physical world. Then through the acceptance of Jesus as the resurrected Son of God becoming a new creation. Finally, transitioning through the process of sanctification into the spiritual world to live with God for all time. Revelation 21:3-4 describes how this will be. “Behold the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people. God himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain for the former things have passed away.”
The meaning of life is to pursue a relationship with God based on faithful obedience. The resulting ability to trust God to provide whatever is needed manifests as a sense of peace and joy not obtainable from any source.