'Christ in You...'
by Dale Krebbs
What would it take - what would it take - for you to believe? To really believe in Jesus Christ and receive eternal life? If you thought about it enough to devise terms or a set of conditions before you would even consider it, what would they be? What would be your objections to living forever? Can you think of any? Whatever the list might contain, it comes down to objecting to living forever. What is about living forever do you object to?
It is apparent that we all value being alive. Else we would not go to so much trouble and anguish to keep it that way. You are going to “die” some day - we are all going to die some day. Why would you want to die, and remain so, when all that you are presently going through is a frantic attempt to remain otherwise?
What part of living forever is not understood - and more importantly, objected to? What conditions would God have to meet, in order for you to accept being given eternal life? How high of a price would you set, in order for you to do the deal? Does anything come to mind readily - one, or two, or perhaps many more than a few conditions?
What is so objectionable about a promise that you can have a life that never ends, especially in the light of the amount of effort and trouble you are going through now in order to keep life going? It would seem that it really IS quiet important, is it not?...what is your price that God must meet in order for you to keep on living, without it coming to an end?
Perhaps you have never thought of it in just this way before; or, perhaps you have.
The foregoing is presented to obviously make a point. We cannot actually dictate terms, or make deals with God the way that it is done in the world. However, neither is God a dictator in the worldly sense. God would invite us to approach Him, and He will approach us, in order that we may come to understand what is really at stake in this life (Matthew 16:26; 8:37). Satan and his world would have all of us remain oblivious to the utter seriousness of the fact of our existence. He keeps the world so preoccupied with the busyness of living that it passes right by life - or rather life passes the world by.
But again, what is so objectionable about having your life go on? Some would quickly say that their lives are so difficult and miserable that they would not want it to go on endlessly. Life without God sometimes gets to that point. However, this is usually thought or spoken only when things seems their worst - when problems subside, so does the enthusiasm for ending everything. Some believe - or least say they believe - that when they die, everything ends - life, consciousness, body, soul and spirit. As a result, they attempt to pack so much “living” into their existence that they can feel when the time comes they made a good trade - it was worth it all!
Have you ever just really hated life? Not just events or conditions of life, but life, as you find yourself living it. The whole spectrum of it, whatever it may be. A close examination of the book of Ecclesiastes (Ecclesiastes 2:16-18) reveals an undercurrent that adds to deeper understanding of another purpose of the book. Interestingly, Solomon never said what we sometimes feel that he said. He did not say he hated living - only that he hated life. There is a difference. As he was accomplishing his momentous projects, living a life of wealth and power, he admits he enjoyed the life of the doing of them - as he was living them and doing them. Nothing is said against the doing of them. The problem addressed in the book is not the act of living, but the act of not keeping God first in all his living. All he could do was enjoy the moment - and then despair of the moment.
Life at its longest is very short. Life is what has been passing in front of you while you have been planning your future. Time flies. All is temporary. Unless the truth of the gospel accompanies it all, some day you will wonder where it all went. That is the way everyone lives. From Solomon's other statements we see just how much he enjoyed existence. It was what did not accompany his existence that brought him to despair. His life was what happens when God is left out of living. God had ceased to be in his life. But we must all come to a place where we hate the way the world lives - and as we have lived in it. With God in us, in our living, living forever becomes the most desirable thing imaginable...
God has already met everything you could possibly present as a condition for the "deal" with Him for your life. All your conditions have already been met. There is no need for you to pose conditions, because all that could be objected to were anticipated long ago, and met. They were answered - and met - by Jesus Christ on the cross (John 14:6). Because as the lyric to a gospel tune goes, “when He was on the cross, I was on His mind...” Each and every time you go your own way, burning up your allotted days, a demand is made on His life, that He has already paid by His death. Your eternal life has already been bought and paid for in advance (John 10:10). He has loved you enough to make the first and complete offer - His life for yours...
There is now only one condition you must meet: exchange your present “life” for His...and let Him live His new and eternal life in yours (Matthew 10:39; 16:25). He has already met any genuine conditions you could possibly ask of Him (1 John 5:13).
Why would you not do so? Why would you not trade the short time you have in life now, for one that will never end.? Its already a done deal - if you want it (Revelation 21:6-7).
What else is it going to take?
“Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes! Cease to do evil, Learn to do right! Seek justice, relieve the oppressed, and correct the oppressor. Defend the fatherless, plead for the widow. Come now, and let us reason together, says the Lord. Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall be like wool.” - Isaiah 1:16-18 (AB)
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