Summary: Living with an Eternal Perspective changes how we live. When we are oblivious to the end of our lives and to the shortness of our days, we live as if there is no tomorrow.
PDL: Your Purpose is Determined by Your Perspective
i. Last week we looked at “why you need a purpose in life.” We examined some of the principles for having a purpose.
ii. .Things like
1. “we cannot understand or attain our purpose in life apart from God.”
2. God doesn’t make mistakes and no human being is an accident. God takes into account our sin and failure and still uses it to produce a destiny.
3. We learned that having a purpose gives meaning to our lives.
4. That having a purpose simplifies and focuses our lives.
5. And that having and pursuing your purpose prepares you for eternity.
2. Eternity (that’s what we are going to look at today)
a. The only time people think about eternity is at a funeral. By then, it is too late for the one who is gone.
b. And those on this side of eternity are too wrapped up in the pain of separation from their loved one to really grab hold of the truths that one passing from this life leaves behind.
i. Things like…
1. Don’t wait until its too late.
2. Stop living like there is a tomorrow
3. Tell someone you love them…today!
c. I want each of us to stare into eternity today and to think about what it is and what it means. The bible tells us to do that. Because it is very hard for a person to look at eternity and remain unchanged by it.
d. Most of us realize that this life is not all there is.
i. In fact, this life is said to be the “dress rehearsal” before the real performance.
ii. The truth of the matter is that we will spend far more time on the other side of death than we will here.
iii. This life is preparation for the next.
1. When you were in your mother’s womb, those 9 months were not an end in themselves. You couldn’t stay there. That time in your mother’s womb was a preparation for the next step in your life.
2. Death is the doorway to the next life. This life is just a preparation.
iv. Sir Thomas Browne said, “Your time on earth is but a small parenthesis in eternity.”
e. Eternity is a long, long time.
i. It defies our ability to even grasp its existence or meaning.
1. This is because we were created, and therefore have a beginning.
2. But we have no end. We will live forever.
3. Mathematicians cannot account for something not having a beginning, but they do have formulas for something having no end.
ii. But God defies all of us…He has neither beginning or ending. He has always been.
1. And He desires that we try to comprehend what it means to live for eternity.
f. The bible says, “God has planted eternity in the human heart.” (Eccl 3:11)
i. We have a desire to live forever, because God has made us with that desire.
ii. In fact, it was His original design when He created mankind (Adam and Eve)…but death became a reality because of sin.
iii. Our bodies will not last, they will die someday. Some of us know what it is to have a body that is wearing out already.
iv. But God tells us that it will be replaced by a new garment that will be our house for eternity, designed specifically for an eternal, spiritual existence.
1. “When this tent we live is – our body here on earth – is torn down, God will have a house in heaven for us to live in, a home he himself has made, which will last forever.” (2 Cor 5:1)
3. Living with an Eternal Perspective changes how we live.
a. When we are oblivious to the end of our lives and to the shortness of our days, we live as if there is no tomorrow.
i. Our values, our goals, our dreams, what we live for and how we live is affected by it.
ii. A Christian relief worker in former Yugoslavia says the war has made unbelievers "eternity conscious," He (Turner) was in Mostar, Bosnia, distributing medical supplies and thousands of copies of a Christian booklet "Help From Above". Although Bosnia is 44 percent Muslim, only three people turned down a copy of the book. "One thing that has intensified that urge to know God, is that they might see Him any minute,"
iii. Psalm 90:
1. 2 Before the mountains were created, before you made the earth and the world, you are God, without beginning or end. 3 You turn people back to dust, saying, "Return to dust!" 4 For you, a thousand years are as yesterday! They are like a few hours! 5 You sweep people away like dreams that disappear or like grass that springs up in the morning. 6 In the morning it blooms and flourishes, but by evening it is dry and withered. 7 We wither beneath your anger; we are overwhelmed by your fury. 8 You spread out our sins before you – our secret sins – and you see them all. 9 We live our lives beneath your wrath. We end our lives with a groan. 10 Seventy years are given to us! Some may even reach eighty. But even the best of these years are filled with pain and trouble; soon they disappear, and we are gone. 11 Who can comprehend the power of your anger? Your wrath is as awesome as the fear you deserve. 12 Teach us to make the most of our time, so that we may grow in wisdom.