Summary: Our time on this earth compared to eternity is very short. we must use it wisely and be productive for the Kingdom of God.

Between the Dashes

James Chapter 4:13-17

James chapter 4:13-17


We are still working on the series “Faith that works”. I hope that you have been taking notes and putting these thoughts together as we look at practical living. Applying the Word of God to our lives. This morning looking at time. Our life span compared to eternity. Commentaries argue who James is talking to in this passage. Some say that he is talking to the unbelievers that wouldn’t listen to God., others say that he is continuing to talk to believers. I would like to say that it doesn’t matter. To the unbelievers, he is saying that the time is short and you are gone. To the believers, he is also saying that the time here on earth is short and we will be gone.


It is said one time during the great years of Mohamad Ali, he was on an airplane ready for takeoff and the stewardess mad an announcement to fasten their seat belts, after checking everyone, she told Mohamad Ali to fasten his seatbelt, “Superman don’t need to fasten seatbelt” to which the stewardess replied, “Superman doesn’t need airplane, fasten your seatbelt.”

To some this morning, you think that you will live forever. I one point, I thought that too. Now my body, tells me and shows me different.

The process goes something like this.

At Ten years old, you can’t wait to be a teenager of 13

At Thirteen years old, you can’t wait to get into high school (with some fear)

At fifteen years old, you can’t wait to drive.

At sixteen years old, you can’t wait to get out of high school.

At eighteen, fearful of college days, and get them behind you and get a job.

Twenty-one is the magic number, you can’t wait.

Then you can’t wait to get married.

Then to have kids

Then, not only a job, but the dream job.

Then, the freedom of the kids to be grown.

Then the blessing of grand kids that others have.

Then you can’t wait for retirement, to live on all that money that you paid in.

You get the point. In the midst of all that is a realization that you go from superman to the guy/gal that Aarp is now calling and sending you welcome letters. You went from lots of life ahead of you , to most of it behind you. I don’t mean to depress anyone this morning, but that is reality. If you are not careful, you spend your whole life wishing something ahead of you until one day everything is behind you and you wonder where all that time has gone. James is saying to all those that think you have forever, time will sneak up on you. We do not know what the future holds for you time wise. You are not promised tomorrow. In fact he says, “What is your life? You are a mist that appears for awhile and then vanishes.” It is like a kettle on the stove heating up, a mist appears and then it vanishes in thin air. Your translation might say- your life is a moment, and then it disappears. It’s funny what the dictionary says about a moment. As a noun, a indefinitely short period of time- example “I’ll be with you in a moment.” That can be short or long, depending on someone’s definition of moment.. It can be present time or particular time, example “He/she is busy at the moment.” Another flame of reference, “His big moment came in the final game”. When we look at time, we have to look at it from God’s perspective. Our moment is between our birth (first breath) and our death (last breath) and we are not told what time period that is for each of us. Because each one of us is different. Today is unknown. Tomorrow is uncertain. Time is unsure.

Proverbs 27:1 “do not boost about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth” While many think they have life figured out, God says that there are mysteries we do not know and cannot figure out. Many have expected to have tomorrow, because they are living life to the fullest, expecting one day to go to church, one day to make their relationship right with God, one day to make relationships with certain people right here on earth. They expected and planed to have tomorrow, but tomorrow never came.


You may tie your shoes this morning, and the undertaker may untie them tonight.


I close my eyes, only for a moment, and the moments gone.

All my dreams, pass before my eyes a curiosity. Dust in the wind, all they are is dust in the wind. Same old song, just a drop of water in an endless sea,

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