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I have been an Elder at the Community Bible Church in Minneapolis Kansas. For 35+ years.  During that time I have been writing these thought...

Monday, October 31, 2016


Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #62 – “Judgement”

               It is so important for Christians, born again believers, to seek to work pleasing God.  Works, as in doing good, is key to everything in the eternal life to come.  If a person has denied Jesus Christ and failed to believe in Him, that person will be judged at the Great White Throne judgment.  His name not being found in the Book of Life, will receive eternal punishment.  The severity of the punishment will depend upon his works done in this life.  A greater punishment will be meted out to those who have performed the worst deeds.  We find in Revelations 20:11-15 what takes place at the final judgment, “and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds.  Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire.  This is the second death, the lake of fire.” (Rev. 20:13b, 14)  The first death is the physical death and the second death is being cast into the lake of fire.  You probably have heard; if you are born once you will die twice, but, if you are born twice you only die once.   The second birth is a spiritual birth that takes place when you believe in Jesus Christ.

               You will notice that those thrown into the lake of fire are judged when their name is not found in the book of life, they are also judged according to their deeds.  The same is true with believers; “for we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.” (2 Cor. 5:10)  Just as it is with the unbeliever’s judgment, the ones with the greatest good deeds receive the greatest rewards.  Those who have done nothing as a Christian will not lose their kinship with God but will lose their rewards.  Paul writes, “For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.  Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work.  If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward.  If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor. 3:11-15)  Just as the poem states, “Only One Life, T’will Soon Be Past, Only What’s Done for Christ, Will Last.” 

               One other thing that is important to know about building our treasures, our rewards, in heaven is that while we must work to earn them, we must also work to keep them.  The Bible states over and over again that we must “stand firm”, “for now we really live, if you stand firm in the Lord.” (1 Thess. 3:8) The same words are used in 1 Cor. 13; Eph. 6:11, 13, 14; Phil. 4:1; 2 Thess. 2:15; 1 Pet. 5:12.  To keep our rewards intact till we see Christ at the judgment seat of Christ, we must stand firm and endure, “It is a trustworthy statement: For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him; If we endure, we will also reign with Him; If we deny Him, He also will deny us.” (2 Tim. 2:11, 12)  Where it says He will deny us means that He will deny our rewards if we stop serving Him which is the same as denying Him.  Until we die, we are to continue serving Him as we are preparing for eternity with Him

               You, too can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Friday, October 28, 2016

"Oue Proving Ground"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #61 – “Our Proving Ground”

               We concluded last article with speculation as to what life on the new heaven and new earth would look like.  We need only to look at the economy that we currently have.  We have industries, production, life, and authority on various levels from kings, queens, and presidents to the common laborers.  This is the life and economy that God has given us beginning with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.  This all began with God creating male and female and placing them in the Garden to cultivate it and to eat of the produce of the garden.   Why would we consider that life in the new earth and heaven would be different, except for having no sin?  God created the institution of Church, marriage and family, government, and business.  The question might be, what determines who does what in the new life?

               Works determines what happens to us and determines who will do what in the new life.  Many people believe that it is by works that a person is saved and that works keep a person saved.  That position is held by many big named, so-called preachers and comes from chapter one in the book of Malarkey.  There are many places in the Bible that speak of works to save ones temporal life, such as the case with the people of Nineveh in the book of Jonah.  They repented to be saved from God’s destruction.  That salvation was from temporal destruction not saved to eternal life with God.  Works have absolutely nothing to do with spiritual salvation only temporal salvation.  Works that count spiritually are the works that are done by a person following belief through faith in Jesus Christ.  Paul wrote, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God.” (Eph. 2:8)  Following the conversion to Jesus Christ by faith, a person’s works for God is stored up in Heaven in the form of rewards to be given to the one who earns them and endures until the end.  Those works, depending on the measure of them, will determine a person’s place or station in the new life on the new earth.  You could be a king or you could be one who cultivates the garden, depending on what you do in the name of Christ while you are here on this earth.  This is our proving ground or area of preparation for what is to be in the new life with God in the new world.

               Many people talk of losing salvation but the truth is; if you are not working to praise and please Jesus, you are not losing your salvation but, losing your eternal rewards.  Jesus said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matt. 6: 19-21)  Then, if we have worked to earn our rewards in the life to come we must endure to the end.  “It is a trustworthy statement: For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him; if we endure, we will also reign with Him; if we deny Him, He also will deny us; if we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.” (2 Tim. 2:11-13)

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

"Can You Imagine?"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #60 – “Can You Imagine?”

               Over the past ten articles, including this one, we have been considering ten stages that every person must go through.  This is the last of the series and will consider the final destination for all people who have been born into this world.  In the previous article, it was pointed out that everyone who will reject Jesus Christ will be judged at the Great White Throne Judgment and with their name not found in the book of life will be cast into hell forever and ever.  That will be their final or, eternal destination.  “But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murders and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” (Rev. 21:8)

               For every person who has or will believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, their final destination will not be in heaven as many believe, but will be on the new earth and new heaven.  “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.  And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.  And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.’” (Rev. 21:1-4)

               We cannot even imagine what a glorious eternity we will have.  There will be no more sin, imagine if you can, no more lying, stealing, cursing,  or corruption of any kind and no more politics.  Even better than that is there will be no more sorrow, sickness, arthritic pain, and no more death.  There will be only love and contentment with God dwelling among us with everyone honoring and worshipping Him.  The Jewish people will have their promised land and they will be a people loved by God and all people, never to be persecuted again.  What glory our finite minds cannot grasp or even imagine in this life.  Wow!  We should all be looking forward to the time when all of this becomes no longer faith but reality.

               Everything comes full circle.  God, in the beginning of the world, Genesis chapter one and two, created a perfect environment without sin, with beauty and purity that we can only imagine and ends with Revelations 21 and 22, a new world without sin and indescribable beauty and purity to last forever.  And, all those who have trusted in Jesus Christ will be there to enjoy it.  Praise God for His greatness!

               We can only speculate on what life on the new earth might be like.  It makes sense that it will be like it was in the beginning where Adam was to work to keep the garden and he could freely eat from the produce of the garden.  It is reasonable to think that there will be those hoeing in the fields and those who manage the fields all the way to those in authority over cities and countries.  Think of an economy like the one we have now but without sin, crime, corrupt, and such.  Everyone will be happy at whatever station they find themselves based on their service to God in building rewards in heaven while on this earth.  Consider these things.

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Monday, October 17, 2016

"What's Next (Part 2)"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #59 – “What’s Next (Part 2)”

               Last week’s article ended with Jesus returning to earth and the first resurrection.  As Jesus takes up His seat on His glorious throne, He calls all the nations together in what is referred to as the sheep and goat judgment.  He will separate the sheep to His right and the goats to His left.  Those on His right were told to enter into their inheritance, “Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”  (Matt. 25:34b)   Those on His left are told, “Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Matt. 25:41b)   Those on His right are those who believed in Jesus during the tribulation period and the ones on the left refused to believe in Jesus and chose rather to follow the devil or the anti-Christ.   Those who entered into their inheritance in the kingdom would spend a thousand years on this earth with Jesus as King of kings and Lord of lords.

               At the end of the thousand year Kingdom Age, Satan will be released from the abyss only to rally his band of devils and other followers to try one more time to overcome God.  “Fire came down from heaven and devoured them.  And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Rev. 20: 9b, 10)  This will bring to an end the treacherous deeds of Satan and his followers, forever. 

Following the final defeat of Satan, comes the Great White Throne Judgment.  “And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds.” (Rev. 20:12)  “And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”  (Rev. 20:15)  The book of life contains only the names of those who believed in Jesus Christ.  Those whose names were not found in the book of life were cast into the eternal fire.  They were judged according to their deeds.  Those who had the worst deeds were to receive a greater punishment than those whose deeds were not as bad.  Many of those judged may have had all good deeds but their only bad deed was that they refused Jesus Christ, for any who refuse to believe in Jesus Christ will spend eternity in hell where there is torment day and night forever and ever.  Every person born in this world will have eternal life.  Your eternal destiny is contingent upon whether or not you place your faith and trust in Jesus Christ.  “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.’” (John 14:6)

This subject is difficult if not impossible to deal with properly in five to six hundred words.  Therefore, you should take a few minutes to read from your Bible, Matthew 24 and 25 along with Revelations 19 and 20.  This is a very interesting study of what is coming for us, believers or not.

You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  Next article will be on the final destiny of the believer in Jesus.

Lowell Parrish

Friday, October 14, 2016

"What's Next?"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #58 – “What’s Next?”

               Following the rapture of the church, the Lord will return to earth, “They also said, ‘men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky?  This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.’”  (Acts 1:11)  From this passage, we find that as He was raised He will also return.  Before the Lord returns the second time, following the rapture of the church, a period of seven years of tribulation takes place.  This is the final seven years of the Jewish age, a time of God’s wrath being poured out upon unbelievers.  This subject stirs up a great deal of controversy.   Due to time and space considerations, we will only look at what I believe the Scripture says on the matter, my understanding to the best of my abilities.  My position is that of a pre-tribulation rapture of the church, followed by the seven years of tribulation, followed by the return of Jesus and His bride, the church.

               Immediately following the rapture, the anti-Christ is revealed and makes a world-wide contract for a one-world government to bring peace to the world.  It makes sense that when all Christians on the earth disappear, there will be mass confusion and despair.  Something drastic will be necessary to calm the masses.  Some charismatic person will have to rise to the occasion and therefore, the covenant for peace.  After three and a half years, the anti-Christ breaks the covenant and the great tribulation takes place for another three and a half years.  Jesus said, “For then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now nor ever will.  Unless those days had been cut short, no life would have been saved, but for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short. (Matt. 24: 21, 22)   If the Lord does not intervene, no life would survive.  We cannot possibly understand or imagine the evil that will exist during this time.  The restrainer of evil will have been removed where evil and chaos reigns supreme in all the world.

               The Lord returns to earth to bring an end to the terrible devastation taking place.  The King of Kings and Lord of Lords will return to earth to set up His kingdom. The Lord then chained Satan and cast him into the abyss where he will remain for a thousand years.  At this time the first resurrection occurs where Jesus raises those who have been martyred during the tribulation period. (Rev. 19; Matt. 24, 25)  “Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them.  And I saw the soul of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.  The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed, this is the first resurrection.   Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.” (Rev. 20:4-6)

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to come.

Lowell Parrish

Wednesday, October 12, 2016


Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #57 – “Heaven?”

               Have you ever wondered what heaven will be like?  First of all, it is where all believers go when their life on earth comes to a close.  Jesus said to His disciples, “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me.  In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:1-3)  We see from this passage that there is already a place prepared for us.  We will one day be there where the Father and the Son currently dwell.  “The Lord is in His holy temple the Lord’s throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men.” (Psa. 11:4)  In this passage, we learn that the Lord Jesus resides in heaven where we all will reside, IF, we believe in Jesus Christ.  The Scripture is clear that when we pass on from this life we go to be where the Lord is, in heaven. 

There are two possible ways for Christians to get to heaven.  One is through the process of dying, the other is to be raptured.  Paul describes the rapture, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.  Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thess. 4:16, 17)  Those who have passed on, their bodies reside in their grave while their spirit is present with the Lord.  However, when the Lord comes in the clouds for the body of Christ, those believers who have passed on beforehand will have their bodies raised from their graves to join the Lord.  He then calls all those Christians who remain alive at the time to meet them in the clouds and they all will reside with the Lord forever.  This is what is referred to as the rapture of the church. 

               In the book of the Revelations of Jesus Christ, chapter 1:12-16, and chapter four gives us pictures of some of what we will see in heaven when we get there.  This describes pictures or symbolisms used by John probably because of the overwhelming, breath-taking view that is impossible, in human terms, to describe what John was seeing.  It would certainly be beyond our imagination the brilliance, power, purity, and the orderliness of what we will one time lay our eyes upon.  The perfection of heaven cannot be described by the finite human mind.  In chapter 6:9-11 is also pictured the souls of those slain because of their testimony of Jesus.  In verse 10; “And they cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?’” This would indicate that heaven is physical in nature and that those there can see what is going on with those left behind.

               Many and maybe most of Christians, and the world, think that heaven will be our final destination and that we will spend eternity there.  The Bible indicates that heaven is only a temporary dwelling place for believers until Christ returns to earth to set up His kingdom.  The church returns to earth as the bride of Christ to reside there with Him for a thousand years.

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus.  More to follow on the millennial reign.

Lowell Parrish

Monday, October 10, 2016

"Eternal Rewards (Part 2)"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #56 – “Eternal Rewards (Part 2)”

               Understanding eternal rewards is so terribly important to us as believers that it deserves more attention.  Many churches and people believe if you sin you will lose your salvation, or, that you never had it to begin with.  That is not based on the Scripture.  Jesus said, “This is the will of My Father, that everyone who beholds the Son and believes in Him will have eternal life, and I Myself will raise him up on the last day.” (John 6:40)  The promise here is that if you believe in Jesus you will have everlasting life.  That is a promise from God and He does not break His promises.   This is clear throughout the Bible so, that question should be settled for good.  Now, what does happen if we fall into sin or if we do not serve God?  We don’t lose our salvation, so, what happens? 

               God has all kinds of rewards or treasures laid up for those who love and serve Him.  We cannot know what rewards await us following the judgment seat of Christ but, we must know that whatever they are, we must work for them and endure until the end.  We can know generally what the rewards will look like; in the parable of the 10 minas one received authority over 10 cities and another over five cities.  In 2 Timothy, we read, “It is a trustworthy statement: For if we die with Him, we will also live with Him; if we endure, we will also reign with Him.” (2 Tim. 2:11, 12a)  From this passage it is certain that we could potentially have authority to reign with Christ.  The capacity at which we could reign is dependent upon the value of our works and whether we endure to the end.  It looks like the promise is twofold, you do good works and last to the end honoring God.  Paul writes about running the race to win. (1 Cor. 9:24)

               In Revelations, chapter two and three, John writes to the seven churches passing along what Jesus has instructed him regarding the behavior of these seven churches.  He both criticizes the churches and encourages them.  Jesus tells each of them what they have done right and what they have done wrong.  At the end of the letter to each of the seven, Jesus instructs them what they must do and what they may be rewarded.  These rewards are not to the churches but to the individuals within each of the churches.  To the church of Ephesus He instructs, that they will suffer tribulation but if they are faithful until death, they will be given the crown of life.  To another church He promised if they repent of their wrongs they would receive hidden manna and a white stone.  To a third church He says, “Nevertheless what you have, hold fast until I come.  And he who overcomes, and he who keeps My deeds until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations; and he shall rule them with a rod of iron, as the vessels of the potter are broken to pieces, as I also have received authority from my Father; and I will give him the morning star.” (Rev. 2:25-28)

               Blessed will be those who serve God with a loving heart and will endure, last, stand firm in the Lord to the end of their lives.  For them the rewards will be great.  All who have believed in Jesus will inherit eternal life in heaven but for those who serve and honor God to the end will have a much greater eternal experience than those who do not.

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Friday, October 7, 2016

"Eternal Rewards"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #55 – “Eternal Rewards”

               In the last article, it was stated that rewards would be given out at the judgment seat of Christ.  Rewards is a subject that seldom, if ever, are spoken of from the pulpit.  It is a subject that gets little discussion in any venue.  However, for the Christian, it is very important to understand about eternal rewards.  While our salvation is freely given by God, there is nothing we must do except to believe, by faith, in Jesus Christ.  “He who believes in Me has eternal life.”  (John 6:47)  That is the end of the subject on who goes to heaven, now we must be concerned about our role in the life after. 

Entrance into the kingdom is a gift we receive by faith, eternal rewards are earned by faithful service.  Rewards have to be earned by good works of service to God.  The good works are such things as; giving, going to church, helping others, financial support for God’s work, obeying the golden rule, praying regularly, and reading and studying the Bible faithfully.   All of these and many other good deeds are serving the living God and at the same time building riches in heaven that will last for eternity.  “For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building.” (1 Cor. 3:9) Paul continued by saying, “Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work.  If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward.  If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor.  3:12-15)

               The world we are living in is a proving ground for us in our preparation for eternity.  We are to be helping God in building His kingdom, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” (Eph. 2:10)   God uses His children to carry out His plans here on this earth.  We don’t have to quit our jobs or go into the ministry full-time.  We just need to be as Christ like as we possibly can at work, at home, at play; wherever we are and whatever we do, people should see Christ though our lifestyle.  “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the father.” (Col. 3:17)

               We are not perfect people.  We live in a world corrupted by sin and the work of serving the living God is not easy for any of us but we must do all that we can to honor God.  We will all continue to struggle with sin as long as we are in this world but we must continue to have as a goal to become more Christ like with every passing day.  The apostle Paul struggled with sin as described in Romans chapter seven and he may have been the world’s greatest evangelist.  Life is a struggle for all but we must use the gifts that God has given us the best we possibly can and maybe He will say to you one day, “Well done, good slave, because you have been faithful in a very little thing, you are to be in authority over ten cities.” (Luke 19:17)  How great would that be!  What will your role in eternity be?

               You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

"Preparation for Life to Come"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article # 54 – “Preparation for Life to Come”

            It has been mentioned before that life on this earth is a time of preparation for the next life or eternal life with Christ.  It is a time for us to prepare to meet Jesus face to face at the judgement seat of Christ.  “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good of bad.” (2 Cor. 5:10)  So, the point is, what do we want for an outcome of this judgment?

            Jesus told a parable about a nobleman who went to a distant country (Luke 19:12-27).  Before he left he called ten of his servants together and gave them ten minas, each mina was equivalent to about three months wages, a significant responsibility.   In giving them one mina each, he told them to do business with it until he returned.

            On his return he called the slaves together to see what each had earned from doing business with what he had given them.  One servant had earned 10 minas for his master and the master said to him, “Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.” (Luke 19: 17)  Another servant reported that he had gained five minas and again the master rewarded him with authority over five cities.  Another of the servants was called before the master and handed him a handkerchief with the master’s original mina in it.  He had put it away so that he might not lose it.  The master asked why he didn’t at least put it in the bank so it would earn interest.  He then said to those close by to take the mina from him and give it to the one who had the ten minas.  “For I say to you, that to everyone who has will be given; and from him who does not have, even what he has will be take away from him.” (Luke 19:26)

            The parable is a picture of Jesus as the nobleman, His ten slaves are His followers, and He has given us the Holy Spirit and other gifts to use on His behalf while He is gone.  “Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.” (2 Pet. 1:3)   What are we doing with what He has given us?  Are we preparing in this life for the life to come?  He has given all the tools required to carry out His purpose on earth.  Like the nobleman’s slaves, we will be called upon to account for what we have done with what we have been given.  Are we preparing ourselves to be ready to meet face to face with Jesus at the judgment seat of Christ, to be judged according to our deeds whether good or bad?  Paul states, “Each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work.  If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward.  If any man’s work is burn up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor. 3:13-15)  We are talking not of temporal rewards but eternal ones!

            You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish

Monday, October 3, 2016

"Looking Ahead"

Victory Can Be Yours!

Article #53—“Looking Ahead”

I read a quote from a very popular (conservative) Hollywood star, “As I enjoy my twilight years, I am often struck by the inevitability that the party must end.  There will be a clear, cold morning when there isn’t any ‘more’.”  I feel certain that if we were to visit with this person for a moment that he would possibly rephrase that statement somewhat.  However, it is terribly important for us to know in our hearts and minds that we are all going to reach that end of this life, but, the morning will not be a cold morning when there isn’t anymore.  Instead, there will be the warmest and most beautiful thing we will have ever experienced.  The party did not end but has just begun and best of all, it will last for eternity with Jesus Christ.  We, in our finite minds, cannot even image the greatness of that moment.  Paul stated, “we are of good courage, I say, and prefer rather to be absent from the body and to be at home with the Lord.” (2 Cor. 5:8)  Paul, also stated, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” (Rom. 8:18) 

            We do not know what lies ahead for us when this life is over but we have many places in Scripture that help us to know that it will be great beyond imagination.  Jesus said, “In my Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.  If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:2, 3)  What an exciting promise made by Jesus Himself.  If God made the dwelling places, they are perfect in every way.  If Jesus promises to receive you when your life on earth is over, and He promises that where you are He will be also, how can your future be anything but warm and beautiful?  This is something to be longing for.  We are trapped in this world full of sin, corruption, and suffering.  The Scripture says that, “For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God.” (Rom. 8:19)  The earth, along with all else was cursed by God for the sin of Adam in the Garden of Eden.  “For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.  And not only this, but also we ourselves; having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body.” (Rom 8: 22, 23) 

            We have known many times the loss of life for a young person whether by health reason or accident and heard said, ‘they had so much life ahead of them’.  That is certainly true.  When our life on this earth comes to an end, it is really the beginning for a life free from sin, death, corruption, and suffering and full of beauty, love, and peace just as God created for us that was spoiled in the Garden of Eden by sin.  When someone has a birthday, some say, ‘it is better than the alternative’.   Is it?  What do you think?  For me, the alternative beats anything I can imagine.

            You, too, can have victory in Jesus!  More to follow.

Lowell Parrish