DATE POSTED Monday, 2022-11-21
WRITTEN AT: O’Brien, FL
SCRIPTURE FROM: Philippians 1:21-24
TRANSLATION: Amplified Bible (AMP)
BIBLE TEXT: 21 For to me, to live is Christ [He is my source of joy, my reason to live] and to die is gain [for I will be with Him in eternity]. 22 If, however, it is to be life here and I am to go on living, this will mean useful and productive service for me; so I do not know which to choose [if I am given that choice]. 23 But I am hard-pressed between the two. I have the desire to leave [this world] and be with Christ, for that is far, far better; 24 yet to remain in my body is more necessary and essential for your sake.
APPLICATION: Having buried two relatives recently, I have become more keenly aware of life, as we know it today, and death, given the foreknowledge about our eternal destiny. Because of this, and in talking more freely about life, and life after death, I had a close relative tell me to get off the subject of death, for, he thought that I have way too much to look forward to in life! Of course, that advice probably came from a selfish thought about my relative’s future in life without me being present here on earth! Friends, today I want to remind you that even if we ignore life after death, so we could enjoy our life as we know it today, that doesn’t make our future float off into oblivion. Paul met the challenge of leaving a free life of ministry, family and friends, when he was admitted to prison. However, God showed him that ministry for the Kingdom of God exists wherever we find mankind in need of a Savior. I believe this made Paul think even more about other transitions, such as the one from life to eternity after death. The reason I believe it is so vital that my readers and listeners think about this today, is that very much like travelling domestically or internationally, our trip will be disastrous, and our life will be miserable, if we arrive at our destination without having made any plans for it before we left home. In fact, we may have even travelled to the wrong destination! And so it is with our transition, or travel, from planet earth as we know it today. Although the two relatives I mentioned were over 90 – an age that we might ‘expect’ someone to die, let me tell you that I have good friends who have recently also lost teenagers, young adults, and relatives that they least expected. My point is, do not wait to think about your transition from earth until later in life when people tend to die. Your pronouncement could be aligned with your reading of this devotional, you have no control over that. But what you do have control of, is your state of readiness to leave this world at any given moment. I want you to live as a current day traveler would live if they knew they would be traveling soon, their bags would be packed and probably waiting at the front door. Although you may not have given it any thought, let me remind you that for those without Jesus Christ, their bags are already packed, for they have assurance that their eternal destiny is with Satan and his many demons in Hell, for they have said ‘no thanks’ to the invitation from Jesus on more than one occasion. To change that destination, it really is very easy, for Jesus is holding His hand out inviting each reader/listener to accept His love, His compassion, His sacrifice, and the eternal hope He offers to be with He and His Father in Heaven when life here on earth is over. Friends, your ticket to Hell is by default because of your sinful state. Please consider upgrading your ticket to Heaven by accepting the free gift of salvation offered through the awesome sacrifice of Jesus Christ at Calvary. Jesus offered up His life, so that our lives can be acceptable for a transition into the glories of heaven. It’s you move, dear friend. Will it be Heaven, or Hell?
BLESSING(S) NOTED: I can barely think of the overwhelming joy that is ours, whether we remain on earth, or are taken up to glory to live eternally with our ternal Father and His Son Jesus! There is no greater joy!
PRAYER: What joy it is to rejoice together with Paul in glorifying You Lord Jesus, and for the assurance of being with You in glory some day! That makes living here on earth more tolerable, in spite of the many doubts, fears, disappointments, losses and strife of dealing with the sin that is so prevalent here. Lord, thank You for encouraging us through Your servant, Paul. This brings us eternal hope and a satisfying tomorrow. Please teach us to share that joy with those who have made no better plans than to accept their eternal destiny in Hell. We love our family and friends, and we want to see the very best for them. Please help us to be so overjoyed in our relationship with You that they will want nothing less. Use us Lord as Your instrument of love and encouragement while here on earth. AMEN!
FOOTNOTE: There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog might indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. You may also visit me on Spotify and listen to Nuggets while you’re out and about. I would encourage you to find a church home near by your home, and attend as frequently as you could. Get to know God, and allow His people to encourage and strengthen you in your Christian walk, while making every effort to be a blessing to them. God is at work among His people! Please consider growing in your faith, as you worship with fellow believers!