“Live for the now, because there is a later!” Wait! We usually tell others not to live for the moment. Why? Well, our current culture seeks immediate gratification, selfishness, and the pursuit of feel good experiences as the end all. Also be reminded, it is not just the world guilty of such, but many in the body of Christ are caught up in the same trap. However, with that said, I now want to share with you my twist (my interpretation) on these words, and what I mean by the phrase: “live for the now, because there is a later.”
This particular article will take a couple of different blog installments, so for now I want to share with you my first main point, and in later installments we will continue.
My first point is this — that we must keep in mind these two following foundational truths:
- “There is a Heaven” — it is a physical place. It is a place where God completely reveals His glory, presence, and power. For those that accept Christ and embrace Him as Lord, heaven is a place where they will live eternally in His presence.
- “There is a Hell” — it is a physical place. It is a place where His complete glory, presence, and power will be absent. For the individual that has spent every living hour on this earth saying: “God — I don’t believe the gospel, I reject You, leave me alone” — it is in this place that God will grant this individual soul that very request.
How we live now and the decisions we make now, will determine our later. If you analyze your day and break it down, you will quickly find that every waking moment you make decisions to either glorify God and apply His principles, or you find yourself possibly rejecting God and His principles. Be reminded of Peter’s words:
1 Peter 1:17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves in throughout the time of your stay (temporary residence) here in fear.
This world is our temporary residence! Peter is telling us to live for the now (living for Christ), because there is a later (there is an eternity). If we maintain a clear understanding of this truth, the question of “how should we disciple our church concerning worship” naturally arises. Well, we must first ask ourselves this question… “what will we be doing in heaven?” John, in the book of Revelation, tells us!
Rev. 4:8 …four living creatures…not resting day or night, saying: Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty Who was and is to come.
Rev. 4: 10, 11 The twenty four elders are before throne in worship saying: You are worthy, O Lord, To receive glory and honor and power; For you created all things, Any by Your will they exist and were created.
Revelation 7:12 All the angels … elders…the four living creatures fell on their faces and worshiped…saying: “Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom, Thanksgiving and honor and power and might, Be to our God forever and ever. Amen.”
Matt: 24:27 — Jesus said: as the lighting flashes and comes out of the eastern sky and shines in the west… so will the coming of the Son of Man be…. in other Words… it will be quick, swift, without warning, no time for anything else!
What joy should be stirred in our heart right now! These scriptures clearly teach us that upon our arrival to our eternal home, whether by death or by the taking away of the saints, we will immediately find ourselves serving God, in service to Him, worshiping Him…in non-stop…eternal worship! Again, it is absolutely clear in scripture that our primary activity in Heaven will be engaging God in worship.
Again, for this particular blog installment, I’ll leave you for now with that previous point. As you ponder and meditate upon those scriptures, scan the images of Heaven created in the mind’s eye, may your fresh thoughts of eternity immediately enrich your personal worship experience…which in turn will naturally over flow to those under your leadership and care. “Live for the now because there is a later!”
John H. Martineau
Woodlawn Church, Royal Oak, MI