Redeemed from the Empty Way of Life
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.
“… the empty way of life…” Headed nowhere. Meaningless. Without purpose. Those days before coming to Christ were an exercise in futility.
I don’t know about you, but I never saw it that way. Back then I was busy doing stuff. I had ambition, goals, and even a little success to show for my hard work. But in God’s grand scheme, my life was empty.
How sad to think you’ve got life figured out when in reality you’re just wandering in the wilderness. Even more disheartening is to think there isn’t enough “silver or gold” to buy your way out of your predicament. And isn’t the pursuit of money what we devote our lives to? The more the better. But no matter how much we acquire, the end is still the same. Rich man. Poor man. We all die.
Admittedly, the ability to gain possessions makes our temporary existence on this earth easier and more desirable. But the time we have here is brief, especially when compared to eternity. I’ll be 70 on my next birthday, and I promise — life passes quickly. Seems like I dozed off briefly at my high school graduation and woke up here with gray hair and uncontrollable bushy eyebrows.
I just checked the Social Security Life Expectancy Calendar. The government projects I’ll live until 83. And I have a 1 in 10 chance of making it past 95. But on the eternal calendar, I have a 100% chance of living forever.
Everyone lives beyond the grave. Everybody has eternal life. Consequently, the issue is not whether you will have eternal life, it’s where you will spend it.
Let’s look at two verses in which Jesus talks about this eternal life that is for everyone. In Matthew 25, Jesus said, “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.’” Then in the 46th verse Jesus amplifies that thought, “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.”
Which is better? Everlasting joy with the Father or eternal punishment in hell? Okay. That’s a no-brainer. But more important is what you do with your brief time on earth. That will determine where you will spend eternity.
Although we all have been given forever life, we haven’t been given forever to decide where we will spend it. Once we breathe our last breath on this earth, it’s too late. And we have no idea when our lives will end (Proverbs 27:1; James 4:14)
Therefore, don’t ignore, refuse, or become too busy to deal with life’s most important decision. It’s your call, your choice. Your eternal future depends upon it.
We are born into sin, remain enslaved to it (Romans 6:6; Psalm 51:5), and are subject to the dominion of Satan, the god of this age (2 Corinthians 4:4) until we accept God’s gift of eternal life (Ephesians 2:8).
There is but one way to be freed from the path to eternal separation from God and that is through “the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.” (1 Peter 1:19) Only Jesus’ sacrifice satisfies God’s penalty for sin. The shedding of His blood paid our sin debt and justified us before God. The Heavenly Father sees redeemed believers just-as-if we never sinned.
Without Christ, you’re wandering aimlessly, headed for eternal punishment. But it doesn’t have to be that way. God offers eternal salvation with Him in His heaven as a free gift. It’s yours for the taking. If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)
If you have trusted Christ as your Savior, then to God be the glory. Your life has meaning and is headed for the most joyous eternity imaginable, and it was all made possible by the redemptive work of the precious shed blood of Jesus. “Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!” (2 Corinthians 9:15)
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 3 (July – September)