It’s hard to quantify eternity with our finite minds. Even looking at Webster’s dictionary definition doesn’t help us much; “Eternity – having infinite duration or everlasting.” So what does the Bible tell us about eternity? Is it something we should be concerned about in this lifetime? Let’s look at John 17:3 to get us started.
Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. (John 17:3 NIV)
I find it interesting that John uses the present tense in this verse. “Now this is eternal life: that they know you…” The way John puts it, eternal life starts now! Not when we die, because in this life you know God who is the beginning and the end (See Revelation 22:13, and Romans 1:20).
A symbolic look at eternity:
Take a look at the picture of the rope that is accompanied with this blog post. Do you see the black tape on the end of the rope? That tape represents your life here on earth, whereas the rest of the rope is a symbol of your eternity. As you can see it is one continuance piece and not one little piece covered in black tape and then a separate rope for eternity. Eternity starts with life here on earth.
Life is but a breadth:
It’s no coincidence that the black tape on the rope is short lived (pun intended). As the psalmist tells us in Psalms 39:4-6 – “…you have made my days a mere breadth…”
4 “Show me, Lord, my life’s end
and the number of my days;
let me know how fleeting my life is.
5 You have made my days a mere breadth;
the span of my years is as nothing before you.
Everyone is but a breath,
even those who seem secure.
6 “Surely everyone goes around like a mere phantom;
in vain they rush about, heaping up wealth
without knowing whose it will finally be.
There are times in this life that it feels as if we will always be stuck here on earth with no end in sight. I’m sure that when we feel this way God looks at us as parents would a teenager that complains about how their time will never come to move out and have their freedom. Only to have the then teenager look back 5 years later and wonder where the time went. Such is life… “a mere breadth.”
With our life being so short how can we have a real impact on our eternity?
Since the black tape on the rope is but a drop in the bucket can we do anything here on earth that will have that great of an impact on our eternity? This is a great question, and I have a Bible verse that will help answer that question.
19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 6: 19-21 NIV)
Matthew is quoting Jesus in these verses and Jesus tells us that what we do here on earth, if done right, will yield treasures in heaven (aka eternity).
How then do we earn treasures in Heaven?
Another good question Jesus answers in the book of Matthew;
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Matthew 22:37-39 NIV)
The fact that you and I believe there is life after death should motive us to change our lives here and now. Even the strongest believer has things that can be improved upon. Above all else love your God with all your heart, body, soul, and mind for this is the greatest commandment and the first step to a joyful eternity.
Related Content: What Are You Giving Your Life Too?
After reading today’s post, how has your view on eternity changed? What is one thing you can do today to earn your treasure in heaven? What is one thing in this world that’s distracting you from a proper view on eternity? Let us know your answers in the comment section below!