My EverlastingOctober 22, 2007
Ephesians 3:20-21 “Now unto him who is able to do exceeding abundantly above al that we ask or think, according to his power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.”
Of all the wonderous attributes of God, I think that the hardest one to grasp beyond an acedemic level is that of “from everlasting and to everlasting.” We can somewhat understand “to everlasting” and it’s the blessed hope that abides in every saint of God. “So shall we ever be with the Lord Jesus.” We comfort each other with these words and exhort each other to run with patience the race that is set before us. Yet the concept of “from everlasting” is beyond mind-numbing.” We simply have nothing in the realm of the physical to compare it to. Everything must have a beginning; or so it would seem. Many in the profession of astro-physics spend years trying to figure out “Where it all came from. Is there one universe, are there many universes, why is the expansion of the cosmos speeding up (hint: read Revelation 20:11) and what took place before the universally accepted “big bang theory?”
The more that one ponders such things, the more we realize that, when all is said and done, we dont have a clue as to how it all comes together. Yet many of these folks who go through the most headache-inducing mathematical formulas imaginable will refuse to accept the possibility of a spiritual realm. It doesn’t make sense to the natural man. (Neither does the big bang. If there was a big bang, all of the matter in the universe would be scattered uniformally; like an expanding shell. We would be able to figure out “exactly” where this explosion occurred. But this is another topic) The idea that there is an all-knowing entity who inhabits all of eternity is so far beyond our comprehension that many will declare “well that’s just not possible.”
James 1:17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”
Both passages, mentioned thus far, speak of an everlasting state of being. From the moment that we come into existance, the fabric of the everlasting is forever altered. There will never be another moment in which we cease to exist. I apolagize for this sounding so “duh” but we tend to be so caught up with the present world that we lose site of this reality. If we can just get this eternal perspective into our heart of hearts, and understand the unfathomable love that the Lord has for us, we will be more than conquerors here. Two primary things happen when we take on an eternal perspective:
( 1 ) The world loses it’s appeal. The treasures, the monitary accumulations, all the contraptions of which the world says “you gotta have this” lose their authority. This is what troubles me so much about the prosperity gospel. It appeals to the flesh, thereby causing undiscerning saints to put down stakes in the land of wood, hay, and stubble. (Philippians 3:7-8) The more that we grasp the everlasting, the more that the mansion on the hill, the ocean-front property in Arizona (I know that Arizona doesn’t have an ocean-front….yet) the costly-but-impractical sports car, and the private jet lose their appeal. This is not an attack on wealth itself, just an observation as to the temporal nature of such things. And the danger that they pose.
I remember, several years ago, there was a program entitled “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.” It contained stories about those who are….well….rich and famous. To know who the rich and famous truly are, one only has to go visit those who minister at the inner-city homeless shelter, or teach sunday school to kids who, during the week, are bombarded by everything that the forces of darkness can throw at them. Or the lady who works in a nursing home, carrying with her the final opportunity for many residents to hear of eternal life through Jesus Christ. It’s those who “love not their lives in this world” that they may be effective warriors for the kingdom. Each taking up a position that only they can fill. (Revelation 14:13)
Matthew 19:21 “Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.”
This was the answer that Jesus gave to the rich man who loved his stuff. The very God of all that is was telling this man, “leave the stubble behind and follow me” but the man just couldn’t see beyond the here and now. (A “here and now” that has been gone for two thousand years)
( 2 ) This has already been touched on, however, it bears repeating. Being eternally minded will cause us to be about our Fathers business. Each day, we’ll seek out opportunities to further the kingdom of God; be it a great work or a seemingly insignificant gesture of kindness to a stranger. Our thoughts, our actions, our prayers, will be geared toward those things which have everlasting significance.
Several weeks ago, pastor Troyer mentioned something concerning priorities. It went along the lines of “when something seems so important, ask yourself, Will this be important one hundred years from now? If the answer is no, than it’s not that critical now.” In other words, the sports car will hold no bearing in a hundred years. Even if it’s preserved, another will have it in their posession. But if we tell a stranger about Jesus, and those seeds eventually cause that person to accept him as Savior and Lord, that will be important, not only a hundred years from now but throughout the eons to come. This next passage has been mentioned often and it actually belongs on the “one-verse-wonders” page, but here it is again:
Daniel 12:2-3 “And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.”
WOW! Suddenly the dramas of this life seem ever so insignificant. The gnat-straining, the social status, the gauges that we use to measure each other lose their authority. “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God” What an awesome salvation through Jesus Christ.
Well, I have to go….yes….feed the goats. I write this as one who battles this every day; as do we all. It’s easy to get sidetracked by the events taking place on the earth because they’re in our face every moment. All the more important to keep our eyes on Jesus and not be overcharged with such things. I’ll close with a well-known passage and wish to all a blessed day in Jesus.
II Corinthians 4:18 “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
I’m sorry; it’s impossible to stop there without going on to chapter five.
II Corinthians 5:1-4 “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: If so that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not that we should be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life.”
Greetings again. Once again, a site with notable information must be made known. This one is www.secretbelievers.org and is a ministry of Open Doors. It concerns primarily the affairs of saints in Muslium countries and has a running account of current news events concerning this.
Greetings yet again! (I can’t stop!) Tonight on Coast to Coast AM (1:00am to 5:00am eastern time) a guy named Reverend Bob Larson will be interviewed. The topic is occultism and demonic activity in the US today. His site is www.boblarson.org and while I link to it, please be advised that I’m not at all familiar with this ministry. Discernment is always a must in all things. The interview will most likely begin at 2:00am, the standard procedure for Coast to Coast.