Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. That day will bring about the destruction of the heavens by fire, and the elements will melt in the heat. 2 Peter 3:11-12 (NIV).
My Concordia Bible says “the transitory nature of the material universe ought to make a difference in one’s system of values and one’s priorities.” Have you ever really considered that where we live is “transitory?”
I haven’t. Really haven’t. This planet is all humanity knows. Twelve men have walked on another celestial body. Other than them, except for Jesus Christ, every one of the billions of us who have ever lived has walked only here on the Third Rock. Face it: this is the only home we’ve got.
And it’s a rental. Yep. We’re only temporary occupants of the fallen world. Once upon a time, the first two inhabitants of it lived in perfect harmony with both their God and His nature. Then, they chose sin and everything changed, even the nature of nature itself; ‘unnatural’ became natural. Since then, everything has been corrupted by mankind’s sins.
In the end, it will be restored. The coming purification will wipe out all vestiges of sin. Those made righteous by Christ will reside in a world made clean, free of corruption, free of temptation, free of the pathetic, sad nature of unnatural sin.
The elements of sin – rebellion against God – won’t be able to withstand the heat of that purification. Like Linda Blair sprinkled with holy water, sin will cry “it burns!” Yet that fury will cleanse away all impurities. The dross will fall away; only the gold of Christ’s people will remain.
Knowing that, shouldn’t we temper our thoughts, words, and actions with that knowledge? This place, the only home we know, will be made new, made perfect again. Knowing this, shouldn’t we live in ways that show we want to be a part of it? Shouldn’t we be eager to cast off our sins, to take ourselves away from temptations, to learn to be slow to speak, slow to react, and quick to follow Christ?
Face it again: I’m betting neither you nor I have thought much about that. Most times, we let ourselves become too busy living our lives, following X in pursuit of Y, to consider that the end will come (and soon). That we should choose to submit our following to Jesus instead of that X or Y. Everything we have or know here is transitory, temporary, terrestrial. Everything up ahead is forever.
For further reading: 1 Corinthians 1:7, 2 Peter 3:13
Lord Jesus, I’m sorry that I have messed up, that I forget how You save me despite my rebellion. Thanks for not abandoning me, for loving me when I don’t deserve it. And thanks for the promise to make all things new.
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