Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

Soon, Very Soon

REVELATION 21:1-4 – Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

The Apostle Paul summed up all the Christian life from start to finish in his last letter he wrote before a martyr’s death–2 Timothy. Writing to his son in the faith and a young pastor, he personalized for all of us the whole of the Christian life – I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7). We may elaborate on his statement while stating its importance.

The Christian life is an intense fight, grueling race, and the assaults from the world and devil tempting us to compromise the faith abound. Fight hard, run zealously, and hold onto the shield of faith. At the end of our lives these, only these, will be all that really mattered.

So with importance of understanding the whole of the Christian life, what are some of the motivating factors to help us keep fighting, running and enduring till the end? There are multiple. For instance, the strength to live the Christian life is found in both the joy of the Lord and being under the control of His love. We read of the empowerment of joy in the letter of Nehemiah – Then he said to them, “Go your way. Eat the fat and drink sweet wine and send portions to anyone who has nothing ready, for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). Moving into the New Testament, the Apostle Paul would proclaim what controlled his life-For Christ’s love compels us, since we have reached this conclusion: If One died for all, then all died (2 Corinthians 5:14). There is something else to move us to live the Christian life with perseverance and consistency to the end. It is found in today’s scripture and appears in other sections of scripture like Colossians 3:1-4 and 1 John 3:1-3.

Setting our minds and hearts on heaven is one of the most sustaining forces for living the whole of the Christian life. To make conscious efforts to think on being in heaven, of seeing Jesus, and enjoying our completed fight intensifies our obedience to the God who has prepared this place for us.

The more we remind ourselves of what lies ahead, the more we are weaned from this passing world. It is true that the person doing the most earthly good is the one most heavenly-minded. So, as the fight gets “bloody” and the race tiring, keep our eyes on the last round and finish line. Soon, very soon, the fight and race will be over and faith will give way to sight! Glorious Day. Live for it. It is coming.

PRAYER: “Father, thank You that very soon, all my battles, all my failings, all will be gone as I enter Your Presence.”
QUOTE: “Don’t lose heart. Press on, warrior. The battle will be over and rest in the Presence of the Lord ours forever.”

Because of Him,
Pastor Jim