Thursday, April 19, 2012

Jesus Skeptic: Where are you headed?

Solomon cried out,

A man might have a hundred children and live to be very old. But if he finds no satisfaction in life and doesn’t even get a decent burial, it would have been better for him to be born dead. His birth would have been meaningless, and he would have ended in darkness. He wouldn’t even have had a name, and he would never have seen the sun or known of its existence. Yet he would have had more peace than in growing up to be an unhappy man. He might live a thousand years twice over but still not find contentment. And since he must die like everyone else—well, what’s the use?
Ecclesiastes 6:3-6, NLT

Interesting question, is it not? 

"What's the use?"

Have you ever asked yourself that? Or maybe you've thought to yourself, as Solomon was portraying, "If I never would have been born, I wouldn't have to go through this terrible, wretched life." 

These are serious thoughts. These are depressing thoughts-- to feel as though life is meaningless and there is no hope on the other side of the grave.

As I previously discussed in the first blog entry of this series, there is a purpose for the life we are living here and now. But what is even more wonderful is that there is a better life waiting for us on the other side of the grave for those who trust in Christ. 

Jesus spoke of heaven a lot. Here, in John 14, He tells His disciples about heaven and gives them a glimpse of what they can look forward to.

Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. 
John 14:1-3, NASB  

What a wonderful promise! Jesus does not leave His followers in the dark, not knowing if there is any hope. No, Jesus says that He has made the way, He has prepared the place for believers, so that we may always be with the Lord. He did all the work and keeps us in His grasp so that we may always be in His presence. 

Revelation speaks of heaven also:

...and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away. 
Revelation 21:4, NASB 

That sounds incredible, does it not? This is the world many of us want here and now. Many people envision world peace and a cure for every kind of suffering. Unfortunately, this kind of glory is unattainable on earth. Because of sin, we will never taste heaven on earth. The iniquity that surrounds us prevents us from experiencing what God has intended for humanity. The Bible is clear,

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them...although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools...
Romans 1:18-19, 21-22, NKJV

Because of the sin we have all chosen, we are destined not for heaven, but for eternal, conscious, tormenting hell-- just like what Jesus talked about (Luke 16:24-28). But praise be to God that because of the sacrifice Jesus made on the Cross in our place for our sin, we may all be allowed into heaven if we accept His gift of grace by faith alone.

God is calling. Heaven is prepared. Eternity is forever. 

Call on the name of Jesus.   

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