Friday, February 21, 2014

It is all Nothingness and Futility



To unsaved people, Christianity is nothing more than a philosophy. So when they decide to change their philosophy, they are sincere when they say... “I used to be a Christian.” Now, they may have once been in a Christian church, and had learned Christian teachings; but they certainly never found Christ as their personal Savior. Many people join a church, listen to the Gospel message, but they have NO faith in God. This is exactly what happened to the Jews in the Wilderness in Moses' time... “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” Many people hear the saving Gospel message of Christ crucified, but they have no faith in what they are hearing. Our churches are packed full with such Christ-rejecters. What a sad paradox!

The fact is that many who claim to be Christians have never been born again. They wear the label of “Christian,” but there has been no true change of heart. Many who do not even believe the Bible to be true presume to teach it. They claim to speak for God yet live in a state of unbelief. Most false interpretations of Scripture come from such sources.

It is impossible for an unbeliever to correctly interpret Scripture. “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). An unsaved man cannot understand the truth of the Bible. He has no illumination. Further, even being a pastor or theologian does not guarantee one’s salvation.

An example of the chaos created by unbelief is found in John 12:28-29. Jesus prays to the Father, saying, “Father, glorify your name.” The Father responds with an audible voice from heaven, which everyone nearby hears. Notice, however, the difference in interpretation: “The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.” Everyone heard the same thing—an intelligible statement from heaven—yet everyone heard what he wanted to hear.

Evangelist Daniel Kolenda  mentions in his book “Live before you die”  the numerous examples of God’s grace towards his people.

The Lord told Isaiah to cry out and to prophesy these words that still ring like an anthem to our world that chases feverishly after possessions, glory, and gratification.

Notice that Matthew 6:33 says if you will seek the kingdom of God first, “all these things shall be added unto you.” The Greek word translated added is a mathematical term. From a perspective of real value, addition is meaningless unless we are dealing with numbers greater than zero: 0 + 0 = 0. This is true ad infinitum. One could add zeros together until they stretch around the globe, and still the value of all those added zeros would be zero. Zero is the ultimate value of all of the accessories we seek in life. The writer of Ecclesiastes said it best:

“Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher. “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” What does man gain from all his labors at which he toils under the sun? Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever. The sun rises and the sun sets, and hurries back to where it rises. The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course. All streams flow into the sea, yet the sea is never full. To the place the streams come from, there they return again. All things are wearisome, more than one can say." —Ecclesiastes 1:28, NIV

The Lord told Isaiah to cry out and to prophesy these words that still ring like an anthem to our world that chases feverishly after possessions, glory, and gratification.

A voice says, Cry [prophesy]! And I said, What shall I cry? [The voice answered, Proclaim:] All flesh is as frail as grass,and all that makes it attractive . . . is transitory, like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades, when the breath of the Lord blows upon it; surely [all] the people are like grass . . . Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket and are counted as small dust on the scales. . . . All the nations are as nothing before Him; they are regarded by Him as less than nothing and emptiness (waste, futility, and worthlessness). —Isaiah 40:67, 15, 17, AMP

Movie stars, world leaders, and business tycoons all think they are very important, and nightly news reports would have us believe the world revolves around these people and their influence, power, and wealth. But from God’s perspective it is all nothingness and futility. All of their wars, struggles, and efforts to rise to the top of the ladder are all worthless. And if this is so for the most powerful people, how much more for us? When all is said and done, what is the purpose of everything we do? We struggle and toil all our lives, pushing, striving toward something, some purpose, but what?

In an attempt to find meaning, we tell ourselves that we are doing it all for our children, but what do we teach our children? From us they learn to add zeros together, and thus they inherit the same meaningless futility with which we have lived. All the goods we acquire soon rot, precious moments are forgotten, and money evaporates as the dew. The world keeps spinning and changing as people and kingdoms come and go. The wise will see that “the Teacher” was right—everything in this world is utterly meaningless and has less value than a zero. Yet people spend their entire lives adding these meaningless zeros together.

But when we are seeking first the kingdom of God, it means we have made God’s kingdom the priority in our lives. And when God’s kingdom is number one, suddenly all the zeros after it have meaning: 10; 100; 1,000; 10,000; 100,000; 1,000,000! All the zeros of life are meaningless unless God’s kingdom is first! But put God’s kingdom first, and not only will you find ultimate purpose and meaning in life, but also even the small things will also take on significance.

We prepare for the Kingdom by living according to the rules of the Kingdom now. Explaining how one might enter the Kingdom of God, Jesus told Nicodemus that one must be “born again” (John 3:1-8). This process begins with baptism, which signifies the death of the former sinful man and the beginning of a new life dedicated to Christ (Romans 6:1-5). It culminates in a change from mortal flesh and blood to immortal spirit at Christ’s return (1 Corinthians 15:50-53; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).

Once we embark on this process, we are symbolically “conveyed” into the Kingdom (Colossians 1:13) and our “citizenship” is now described as being in heaven (Philippians 3:20). At the completion of the process of being born again, we will be changed into immortal beings and become kings and priests serving in God’s Kingdom on earth (Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10).

Even though the Bible speaks of our “citizenship” as being in heaven after we are baptized (Philippians 3:20), in order to enter the Kingdom of God, humans must be changed from flesh and blood into spirit, from mortal into immortal, at Jesus’ second coming (1 Corinthians 15:50-53; Hebrews 9:28). When the Kingdom of God comes to earth, it will rule over all the “kingdoms of this world” (Revelation 11:15).

We prepare for the Kingdom by living according to the rules of the Kingdom now. Explaining how one might enter the Kingdom of God, Jesus told Nicodemus that one must be “born again” (John 3:1-8). This process begins with baptism, which signifies the death of the former sinful man and the beginning of a new life dedicated to Christ (Romans 6:1-5). It culminates in a change from mortal flesh and blood to immortal spirit at Christ’s return (1 Corinthians 15:50-53; 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17).

Once we embark on this process, we are symbolically “conveyed” into the Kingdom (Colossians 1:13) and our “citizenship” is now described as being in heaven (Philippians 3:20). At the completion of the process of being born again, we will be changed into immortal beings and become kings and priests serving in God’s Kingdom on earth (Revelation 1:6; Revelation 5:10).

Even though the Bible speaks of our “citizenship” as being in heaven after we are baptized (Philippians 3:20), in order to enter the Kingdom of God, humans must be changed from flesh and blood into spirit, from mortal into immortal, at Jesus’ second coming (1 Corinthians 15:50-53; Hebrews 9:28). When the Kingdom of God comes to earth, it will rule over all the “kingdoms of this world” (Revelation 11:15).

References:

(1) Daniel Kolenda, Part 4- Meaningless! Meaningless! Secret #1 - The Kingdom Comes First, Chapter 6, Live Before You Die

(2)“The Kingdom of God Is Within You”—What Did Christ Mean? by David Treybig

Blessings,

Raj Kosaraju


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