Thinking about afterlife eternity is time well spent

Voices of Religion

Posted: Friday, June 11, 2004

Are we having fun yet?

The kids are out of school. It is vacation time and most of us try to squeeze as much as we possibly can out of our Alaska summer.

Playing tour guide to friends and relatives, being involved in kids' programs, fishing, hiking and a variety of other activities keep us in a continuous state of near exhaustion. Add to that the extra hours of daylight and we are induced to keep going until we are ready to drop.

Our time is important to us, as well it should be, but have you ever stopped to think about the time when we will be out of time? The Bible talks about a point when time will end and eternity will begin.

Ecclesiastes 3:11,12, says, "He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men."

The word eternity in this verse meant "vanishing point" in the original language. It carried with it the concept of an indefinite continuance into the future.

Recently I was channel surfing and came across the old movie "Back to the Future."

It is a comedy about an eccentric professor who converts a DeLorean automobile into a time machine. The driver accelerates the car and when it reaches 88 mph, it vanishes, leaving two flaming streaks on the ground in the place of tire tracks. Simultaneously, the occupants of the car appear in a different time and place. That illustration describes the meaning of eternity in the passage above.

Most of us can identify with the part about cars reaching 88 mph, especially if we travel the Sterling Highway at this time of year!

Our lives, too, are moving toward a "vanishing point." There will come a point in time when we leave this world and enter another. Are you ready?

Most of us will not have the luxury of knowing when that will occur.

The verses above teach that everyone reflects upon this from time to time. It is natural to wonder about what happens after this life. The verses also teach that, since we were created for eternity, the things of time cannot fully and permanently satisfy.

In one of the most well-known verses of Scripture we are told, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life," John 3:16.

God's love has made it possible for us to be assured of a wonderful life beyond our "vanishing point."

The condition is very simple: believe in Jesus. The Bible teaches in John 1:14 that Jesus Christ, who is fully God, came to earth and lived among us so we could behold his glory. He lived a sinless life and then offered up himself as a sacrifice for the sins of anyone who would believe in him. After three days he rose from the dead to prove to everyone that he could deliver on the promises he made.

All that is required is to accept what the Bible says about him, and then ask him to forgive our sins and be our Savior, it says in Romans 10:9,10.

Are you ready for eternity? Why not take a few moments from your busy summer schedule to make sure you are prepared. It is time well invested.

Phil Reemtsma is pastor of Calvary Baptist Church, 208 Lawton Drive in Kenai. His e-mail address is www.kenai calvary.org.



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