Do You Know Your End?
Jack Higgins, a British novelist, whose 85 books have sold over 150 million copies, was once asked, "What is it you know now that you wish you'd known as a younger man?" His reply: "I wish I had known that when you get to the top, there is nothing there."
Maybe you are not that ambitious. You are not trying to be a Jeff Bezos or an Elon Musk. You just want to find your own place in the social, corporate, or academic ladder and you will be content. But do you know when you will finally be content? Are you sure, when you get there, you will not think that’s not enough and you need to go higher? There is a reason that we have sayings like, “The grass is greener on the other side.”
No matter how manageable your life’s goal may be, there is a top you are going to reach. That is the turning point in your life, after which people will say about you, “S/he is over the hill.” It seems like life is divided into two phases: the phase of ascension/acquisition; the phase of descension/loss.
You are in the first phase now. Ever since you were born, you have been on the path of acquisition, gaining stature, knowledge, skills, friendships, and hoping to gain career, romance, marriage, family, etc. This is an exciting time in your life. But all too soon, you will reach the zenith of your life and you will enter the phase of loss. During that phase, you will lose one by one all that you have gained in the first phase—your career, friends, children (moving away), spouse, health, appetite, etc. And in the end, you will lose your life itself and whatever you have acquired in life. There's nothing more certain in life than that. With nothing we came and with nothing we'll leave.
You might have made peace with that reality. You don’t like dying. You don’t like the fact that death is the end of you, robbing you of everything you have ever loved and cherished, everything you have worked for and gained, everything you have enjoyed and taken pride in. You don’t like that you will live on only in the memory of your loved ones and even their memory will fade like a photograph in the sun by the passage of time.
But you know that just because you wish things were different doesn’t make them so. The idea of immortality and you ending up in “a better place” is nice but you know it’s just wishful thinking. But do you? Do you know for sure there is no such thing as life after death, a day of reckoning for all that you (and everybody else) have done in this life, heaven and hell, etc.? Are you sure your thoughts are just random chemical reactions in your brain and there is no such thing as the immortal soul? How do you know that? Can you trust your knowledge if your thoughts are just random chemical reactions? What if death seems so strange to you (despite its universality and inevita-bility because God has put eternity in your heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11) and you have an immortal soul because God breathed His breath of life into you (Genesis 2:7)? What if your sense of morality stems from that God-given, immortal soul of yours, seeing that morality is nowhere present in this universe except in the mind of man because he is made in God’s image?
I ask these questions in case you think that science has already answered these questions in the negative. But can science make a definitive statement about such non-material issues? Scientific inquiry is confined to material, measurable things and cannot allow the spiritual or supernatural. Science cannot accept a miracle: it must find a way to explain it scientifically.
The central message of Christianity is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ—“that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). By His death and resurrection, Jesus demonstrated the reality of another realm, which is not governed by the physical laws of this world. That is why the Apostle Paul, who was a fierce persecutor of Christians, suddenly became the most ardent defender and promulgator of Christianity. Paul the persecutor became Paul the persecuted, living and dying for His risen Savior.
Throughout history, so many people have had to wrestle with the message of Christianity. You can dismiss the resurrection of Jesus Christ as a myth. But on what basis? Is it because science says no such thing is possible? Can science explain everything? Isn’t that faith because it cannot even explain everything about the material world? Is the grave your final destination? The Bible claims, No! You are immortal and you must give an account of all that you’ve done. Can you withstand God’s judgment? Jesus died and rose again for your forgiveness. Accept His work and trust Him for your salvation!