Impending death is a concern for many who are aged. No one is sure of how far or how near it is. Some feel that they have quite a few years left because their parents had long lives. For others, worries dominate their lives because their parents died of heart problems, cancer etc. & they feel that sicknesses that are hereditary can cut short their lives. On the whole, old age is a period where people are closer to the end of their lives on earth and such issues dominate their thinking.
Old age is also a period in person’s life wherein the person starts becoming more religious and tries to get closer to God through prayer and worship. As the future looks uncertain, people try to be more pious and live lives pleasing to God. Of course there are a few who still are greedy for money and properties even in their old age. A few though, don’t care about God or their life. If you are reading this and you are in your old age, stop for a while and ponder about your life.
Remember your childhood, your youth, your middle age and your present life. Surely there would have been many ups and downs, time of joy and times of grief, times of success and failure. These are happenings in everyone’s life. More importantly, there is point in everyone’s life wherein a person has a longing to know the meaning of life or about their existence.
Surely you would have had that thought at some juncture of your life. A desire to know why you are here on earth. A desire to know God; perhaps you found some answers; perhaps you are not sure. Whatever be the outcome of that search, there are things that you must know for sure, now that you are in your old age.
After your bodily death on earth, your spirit and soul which are unseen to you, live on eternally. Even when people are carrying your dead body to be buried or burnt, your spirit and soul would have reached the destination that God has allotted them. The destination of your spirit and soul will be the outcome of your decision to live or not live a life pleasing to God, submitting to his will.
So where do you stand in regard to your relationship with God? Your good works alone cannot purchase your salvation. It has already been bought by someone. But you have to acknowledge that the price for your salvation was paid by that someone. Do you know him? If yes, it is great. If your answer is no, then let me introduce him to you………. His name is JESUS – the son of God.
The Bible says, Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)
The triune God (God the Father, God the son Jesus and God the Holy Spirit) who originally created this world and all in it can allow you into his heavenly kingdom only if you believe in the sin atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ.
Why believe in Jesus and not anyone else? Because no one else has paid the price for your sins. Do you acknowledge that you are a sinner? The Bible says,
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Romans 3:23)
Adam & Eve, the first human creations, sinned by disobeying God’s command in the Garden of Eden where God had placed them. After they sinned they were sent to the earth and there they lived and had a family. They and their children procreated and the earth was populated by their descendants. After a while, the wickedness of humans increased to such an extent that God decided to destroy all his creation. At that time, only one man, Noah, found favor with God. God saved him and his family of 8 persons when he destroyed his creations with water (rain and floods).
The earth then was populated by the sons of Noah. In the later generations the wickedness of man increased again and they lived rebellious lives. God chose a people for himself, the Israelites to be his own and redeemed them from 430 years of bondage to the Egyptians, promising to take them to Canaan, a land flowing with milk and honey under the leadership of Moses. Many of them were rebellious and died on the way. After 40 years of traveling through the wilderness, they reached the land of Canaan. God gave them laws which they did not obey with a whole heart and thus they were subject to bondage under many enemy nations. God raised up judges and kings to govern and deliver them. Sins required sacrifices for atonement. But no sacrifice could achieve permanent atonement. Thus in the fullness of time, God sent his only begotten son Jesus from heaven as the perfect sacrifice for permanent atonement of sins. He was born from a virgin and lived on earth 33 & 1/2 years, preaching repentance of sin and healing and delivering people, from sicknesses and demonic afflictions in the last 3 & 1/2 years of his life. The rulers of the Israelites under Roman governance decided to crucify Jesus and thus he became the perfect sacrifice for the atonement of sins of human kind.
Jesus died on the cross, was buried and then resurrected after 3 days. Jesus said, “I am the way to the Father.” Yes, he is the only way to the Father in heaven. No one else has paid the price for your sin. Have you believed in the sin atoning work of Jesus on the cross and his resurrection?
The Bible says,
That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. (Romans 10:9, 10)
Perhaps even at this end of your life you are living as if there is nothing after your death on earth. But let me tell you, life doesn’t end here on earth with death of your body. Your spirit and soul live on for ever. And the punishment for dying in your sin is eternal death. That means your spirit and soul which has all feelings and intelligence as when you lived in your body will be subject to eternal torment in hell for having turned your back on Jesus and the salvation that is freely available through him. Whereas hell is the torment place for sinners, heaven is the place of comfort for those who have accepted Jesus as their Savior and are living a life pleasing to him. Which group are you in?
All your wealth and property and the good deeds that you did or are doing, cannot purchase salvation. Believing in Jesus Christ and living for him till the end of your life is the only way.
So as you near the end of your life here on earth, make sure that your eternal home is heaven and not the place of torment called hell. In hell, the fire does not quench and the worm does not die.
Answer these questions.
1. Have you believed in the sin atoning perfect sacrifice of Jesus?
2. Do you believe that Jesus died for your sins, was buried and then resurrected and now sits at the right hand of God with all authority in heaven and on earth given to him?
3. Are you living a life pleasing to Jesus?
4. Are you born again?
Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again."He also said, "I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. (John 3:3, 5)
Being “born again” with the spirit happens when you accept Jesus as your Savior, confessing your sins to God, believing that Jesus died for your sins, was buried and resurrected. When you believe that in your heart and confess it with your mouth, the Holy Spirit of God comes and stays in you.
Being “born again” with water happens you obey the word of God and start living a life holy and pleasing to God. Repentance of sins must be followed by bearing of fruit befitting that repentance. Jesus said, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit - fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.” (John 15:16)
So are you “born again”? If not, do take a decision this day! It has permanent connection to your future in eternity.
Jesus is coming back again to judge the world. If it happens in your life time, be ready for that event. If he doesn’t come back when you are alive, be sure that as you leave this world, you are entering eternity in heaven.
You can’t make a choice after you die! No prayers after your death by others can save you either! The decision has to be here and now!
May God grant you grace to take the right decision. If you have taken the right decision, stay true to Jesus till you die. God bless you.