Revelation 5:9 And they sang a new song, saying, “Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
Here in Revelation 5 we see that Christ was slain and at the same time he actively purchased a people with his blood from varied backgrounds. Who did he do this for? Sure those whom he has purchased are beneficiaries, there is no doubt about that; we are saved from hell and given life, we do indeed benefit! But look again at verse 9, for whom did Christ purchase these people? It is “for God”. Who is the primary beneficiary of the atonement of Jesus Christ? It is God. Christ purchased sinners for God. The prime motivation for the accomplishment of redemption is the glory, pleasure and will of God. Believers are recipients, but not the primary end of salvation.
This fact is pivotal. If we understand the gospel in these terms then our Christian compass is far less likely to be selfishly oriented. We will be less likely to walk around thinking that we are the ultimate end for why God created the world and ordered Calvary. Instead, we will be calibrated by Scripture–knowing that God has done what he has done in Christ so that he would get the glory and pleasure that he rightly deserves.
If you are a Christian you are saved from God (from his just wrath), you are saved by God (by his sacrifice) and you are saved for God (for his delight and praise). It is healthy to meditate and rejoice in this reality. Let the gospel of God’s abounding grace sprout humility amid the weeds of selfishness. And may God’s aim of glorifying himself become our chief aim. Indeed there is no greater priority than this!