The Christian faith is one of promises fulfilled. This faith has under its coat some of the most ridiculous promises—ridiculous in a worldly sense—like one man living and dying to set over a billion captives free!
But again, it’s the Christian faith which carries the promise of life—one which defeats death—and reigns supreme, forever.
The most popular verse in the whole bible, which has found its way to billboards in some of the biggest metropolis of the world, bumper stickers, t-shirt prints and the like is John 3:16:
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life(KJV)”. [Emphasis mine].
Another is by far the most popular Psalm in the bible, who can’t recite Psalm 23? Yet we so easily skip what David writes in the last verse of that Psalm:
“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever (KJV)”.
These two popular verses carry a promise of life to be lived forever. Because while the world still wrestles with the idea of death, Christians are already sorted!
James H. Sammis (1840-1919) put it clearly in the hymn Trust and Obey:
Then in fellowship sweet
We will sit at his feet,
Or will walk by his side in the way;
What he says we will do,
Where he sends we will go,
Never fear only trust and obey.
In a land beyond this life, we will be.
In a land without shame, we will be.
In a land without disease, we will be.
In a land without tribulation, we will be.
In a land without guilt, we will be.
In a land without temptation, we will be.
In a land without sin, we will be.
There we will be, at the feet of a loving father, walking side by side with Him in fellowship sweet. All because of Jesus.
This is good news—very good news—news of a new and strong Adam, and news of a powerless death.
Read the words of Sandford F. Bennet (1836-1898) in the hymn, The Sweet By and By:
To our bountiful father above,
We will offer the tribute of praise,
For the glorious gift of his love,
And the blessings that hollow our days.
Because Jesus walked through the valley of death and defeated it in its tracks. When He resurrected, we all resurrected with Him never to die again. By the finished work of Jesus, death has lost its sting.
What a joy to behold! The land that our God has prepared for us (Deut. 5:16; John 14:2) we will live forever because Jesus honored His father on our Behalf. Isn’t that huge?
Image: Doug Floyd/Flickr