There is a theme that one of Jesus’ disciples weaves through a few of his first century letters. The first reference of purpose, thought, and action appears in the passage below. A similar statement is made at the beginning of 1 John 2. The point that John is attempting to make is that confirming to God’s will requires a 3 part process: purpose, thoughts, and actions. This reveals your true allegiance.
If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action], 1 John 1:9.
Purpose is the reason for which something is created or done. From my own personal experiences, having purpose is similar to vision. If you know what you want to do and where you want to go, purpose serves as a compass to guide and direct your life. However, when you lack knowledge, purpose, and vision, you’ll go through life aimlessly, without a clear sense of direction, Hosea 4:6.
My little children, I write you these things so that you may not violate God’s law and sin. But if anyone should sin, we have an Advocate (One Who will intercede for us) with the Father—[it is] Jesus Christ [the all] righteous [upright, just, Who conforms to the Father’s will in every purpose, thought, and action], 1 John 2:1.
Thought and actions tend to go hand in hand. When a thought is conceived within your mind, you’ll like act upon this sooner or later, James 1:14-15. Those who develop a purpose drive life as described in Rick Warren’s book, thoughts and actions will follow. However, the key is not simply listening to the Bible. The ultimate goal is to become doers of God’s Word, Matthew 7:24. Jesus gives Christians a purpose, the Bible plants thoughts into our minds and the Holy Spirit prompts believers to take action, Galatians 5:25.
by Jay Mankus