There is a school of thought that says GOD created mankind because he was lonely.
If I can image God as a bodiless, sentient being, eternal or not, I can image him living an empty and meaningless existence. I refer to God as male though there is no reason except religious tradition to suppose he is a gendered being.
As a child of age six, studying for my first communion, I memorized the lessons in the then (1943) Baltimore Catechism. In my memory, nearing seventy years removed from that event, holds that it said this:
Q. WHO made you ?
A. God made me.
Q. WHY did God make you ?
A. God made me to know, love, and serve him.
These two questions, and their answers, embedded in a child's mind, formed the basis of my understanding of eschatological matters. I thought of God as a single being despite being told of his triune nature.
It made sense to me that God's purpose in making mankind was to assuage his loneliness. To give himself a reason for being. In this scenario he is not only the supreme being but the only being, thereby making him supreme in any case.
As my childhood beliefs gave way to the influence and teachings of the world, along with my own natural physical and mental development, I went through a phase of searching for truth in other venues.
One of the philosophies I found compelling was espoused by Alan Watts (1915-1973) in his book "The Two Hands of God". As I remember the substance of this rather profound writing, Watts held that God created the cosmos, as we understand it, in his mind, by pretending to himself that it is actual and separate from himself.
Or, put another way, we are all part of God's dream and nothing other than God actually exists. I found this view exciting. It satisfied my desire to explain God to myself, and ultimately, explain God away.
Through many decades of searching and studying various religions, philosophies, and occult disciplines, I was pretty well satisfied that I understood actuality. The scientific view of creation, popularly called "the big bang", was something of a metaphor for God having an aneurysm, albeit of a nonphysical kind, his brain being some form of energy but certainly not flesh.
It was simple. I was God. More accurately, an expression of God's thoughts, needed by him to counter his infinite aloneness. Imagine if you were emperor over a vast domain, filled with absolutely nothing.
In this somewhat satisfying state of mind, I proceeded through life until a brief, about three months worth, of serendipitous events, brought me face to face as it were, with Jesus Christ. My search for truth began anew in a different direction. My desire to KNOW was insatiable.
Among my readings and listenings was the Holy Bible. In it I read,
' Then God said, "Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals and over all the creatures that move along the ground." ' [Genesis 1:26 NIV]. Bingo! Voila! God mad mankind out of himself; a manifestation of his consciousness.
But ... the verse says "Let US make".
'US', who ?
Why is the personal pronoun expressed in the plural form if Go is the single only being ?
Genesis was handed down from generation to generation long before the Pentateuch was codified in written form. Moses, credited as author, would have no reasons to identify God as a being in the plural. In his own encounters with God, according to the biblical text, the being was in every instance singular.
It was not until the coming of Emmanuel, the Christ, in the form of Jesus of Nazareth, that we are plainly told that God is a triune being consisting of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost or Spirit. I find it extremely interesting that Jesus told his disciples:
"But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. 8 When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 about sin, because people do not believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father, where you can see me no longer; 11 and about judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned." [John 16: 7-11]
In this passage we see the trinity declared by Jesus; "I" (son), "Advocate" (Holy Spirit", and "Father" ... three persons. Believers generally accept the persons of the trinity as coequal. I do not. Scripture plainly tells me that only the Father can make decisions. The Son obeyed the Father. Either the Son or the Advocate could be on the earth but not both.
The triune nature of God ties in wonderfully with what I call Sagaveran Mathematics.
This math posits that the only base number is three. It works like this. Begin by understanding a binary state such as 1/0, yes/no, is/isn't. There are only two possible states in the abstract. In a binary system, only one can be so. Either it is one or the other. One can only exist if there is zero
There is however a third state of existence, or dimension, or whatever you wish to label it. This third state is the collective existence of the other two states. There is 1, there is 0, and there is 1 or 0. Either, Or, Either/Or. This line of thinking means that three is the onliest number but since all else follows, it is labeled as number 1. One is still in contrast to none. I can conceive the idea of nothingness but to conceive somethingness needs the possibility of nothingness.
So, in my scheme of things, God is three, and God is one.
If God already, prior to our existence, is three, God is not alone, nor lonely, nor in NEED of companionship beyond his own being. We humans perform our acts from some motivation. No matter what we do, we have a reason for it. We may not be aware of what drives us but we nonetheless are driven to perform our acts. Even to refrain from acting is a result of motivation. You can test the truth of this statement by observing your own non-actions. Why did you choose to NOT do something or other?
Because we are made in God's image, it is reasonable to assume that God has performed his acts as a result of motivation. So what motivates God.
In our temporal earthly experience we can find nothing sufficient to motivate God. We are fundamentally motivated to live and not die. God is fundamentally motivated to BE. God doesn't seek material riches. He has no need of such. God doesn't seek knowledge. He has all knowledge. Whatever can be known if of him, from him, in him, and known by him.
God doesn't lust after power or authority. By definition, God possesses all power and authority. What could possibly motivate God to make mankind ? John the Evangelist tells us "God is love" [1 John 4:8].
Love is what motivates God.
And now I have found the text of the 1941 Baltimore Catechism online, and discovered it reads:
1. Who made us?
God made us.
2. Who is God?
God is the Supreme Being, infinitely perfect, who made all things and keeps them in existence.
3. Why did God make us?
God made us to show forth His goodness and to share with us His everlasting happiness in heaven.
I wonder if I am the only six year old who learned it the way I say I did ? Possible. Also possible that in the backwoods Louisiana town where I learned it they used a simplified version. But even the 1891 version includes the explanation that God made us to share eternal happiness.
Regardless of what else Roman Catholicism, or any other Christian doctrine teaches, they got this one right.
God's personal experience of joy in being is so overflowing that God is motivated to share it, multiply it, spread it through all existence. Throughout scripture, God urges fruition, increase, multiplication of every living thing from seed and of every virtue, especially of love. I can see it manifest in our world today. Satan's mockery of God's law is to increase evil is the world.
When it is over, only those who love God, as he has loved them, will share eternal joy with him. That is his purpose.