Summary: When a person embraces the reality of the world to come it radically changes how the peson view this world. A person’s priorities change concerning money, things, time, friends, family, and life itself.
Living in the Light of Eternity
Ephesians 1:15-23 (Message)
When waiting in slow traffic on a hot day with 100-degree heat do you wonder why you do what you do? Do you wonder what’s the point of your daily activity? What gives you sense of purpose?
Events can happen in your life that helps you put life in proper perspective. Paul Azinger was at the height of his professional golf career when the doctor told him that he had life-threatening cancer. Up to that point in his life he hadn’t thought much about dying. Life for Paul Azinger was too all consuming for him to stop and consider the reality of death and eternity. But the encounter with the brevity of life brought an immediate reality check. His life would never be the same again. Even the 1.4 million dollars he had made as a professional golfer that yea seemed insignificant. He remembered the words of the chaplain of the tour who said: “WE think that we are in the land of the living going to the land of the dying when in reality we are in the land of the dying headed for the land of the living.”
The crisis of cancer brought Paul Azinger to a vital faith in Jesus Christ.
When you embrace the reality of the world to come radically changes how you view this world. Your priorities change concerning money, things, time, friends, family, and life itself.
For most Americans the quality of life is measured in terms of accumulating stacks of stuff and achieving high positions and power. Eating this world’s best food and drinking its best wines define life. When eternity is left off the screen, all of life is compressed into the distorted assumption that this is all we have. And what we have is never enough.
Life is most disappointing and most despairing when it is lived, as through this world is all we have. This present world only makes sense when lived in the light of eternity. The Apostle Paul said, “If we have hoped in Christ this life only, we are of all men most to be pitied.” (I Cor. 15:19) If this life on earth is all you have you need a reality check.
Too often people look for the meaning to life in the wrong places. Newspaper William Randolph Hearst invested a fortune collecting art from around the world. On day he found a description of some valuable items he just had to own, so he sent his agent abroad to locate them. After a month searching, the agent reported that the words of art had been found. They were in Hearst’s own warehouse! Hearst had searched frantically for treasures he already possessed. Had he read the catalog of his valuables, he would have saved himself a great deal of money and trouble.
God has given you his clear plan for your life. You may search for meaning to life in many places but God’s Plan is right before you in His Word.
Paul in writing to the Christians in Ephesus points out to them and to all of us God’s grand plan for all who are “In Christ.” God grand scheme does not necessarily involved a big house, a hefty stock portfolio or health. God plan does provide a sense of permanent and eternal direction in life.
Living in the light of eternity involves living in three worlds: The world within, the world to come and the world around us.
I. The World Within
• Dead in Trespasses and sin
Paul declares that the world within is a dark world. Ephesians 2:1 he says prior to a life in Christ all people are dead in trespasses and sins.
Every person that is born is born is an infectious disease. The disease has been spread through the sin and rebellion of Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve became the representatives of all humankind. You say, why blame me for what Adam and Eve did. You are not to blame for what they did. You are accountable for what you do.
The Bible defines sin as the willful transgression of God’s law. Children are not held accountable for sin. A person sins and disobeys God when he or she willfully sins and knows right from wrong and chooses wrong.
• Spiritual warfare within
The Apostle Paul in Ephesians chapter 6:12 says, “For our warfare is not against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”
The bible says that the Angel Lucifer was not satisfied to be an Archangel. He wanted to be equal with God and was cast out of heaven and became the Prince of this world. His mission is to keep God’s creation from turning to God. His strategy spells out four D’s.