The Messenger - Sept/Oct 2014

 

Arrivals and Departures

 

There are many thousands of these daily, throughout the world. The population of this world is continually on the move; some journeys are short while others are 'long-haul'. Some take us to a nearby village while others carry us to distant countries. Some are one-way while others are return journeys. It is not an exaggeration to suggest that, even now, as you are reading this article, there are scores, if not hundreds of travellers who will not arrive at their planned destination.
We are all travellers on the sea of life; carried by the restless tides of time inexorably to eternity, with but one of two destinations before us forever: heaven or hell. An interesting, two-part question was posed by king Artaxerxes in Nehemiah 2.6, "For how long shall thy journey be? And when wilt thou return?"


Annually, many celebrate the date they arrived in this world though none of us remembers that event. In Job 1.21 we read of that humble beginning, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb ...". We began to breathe the polluted air of this sullied environment and our journey on earth began.


In Luke 2.11 we read of the arrival of a unique Person on Planet Earth. "Unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour which is Christ the Lord." That day was planned from all eternity. His birth was neither premature nor postponed; at exactly the hour God had predetermined, Mary "brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped Him in swaddling clothes and laid Him in a manger." Luke 2.7. The Saviour remembers it well and the subsequent days He spent so profitably here for the glory of His Father.


In Luke 23.33 we read of His arrival at another place; Calvary, the place of His crucifixion. It too had been planned so that He arrived on the very day and date ordained of God. It could not be delayed or derailed; it must be on the day of the Passover for Christ was the Paschal Lamb by God appointed. Have you ever considered, my friend, that He went there just for you, to bear the fearful penalty of your sins and by His death, provide an eternal salvation for your soul?


It was for me, yes, all for me;
O, love of God, so great, so free;
O, wondrous love, I'll shout and sing,
He died for me. My Lord, the King.
(J. M. Whyte)


A few weeks after that dread experience, He arrived back in His Father's home and we who have trusted Him, await His arrival in the air to take us to be eternally with Him in heaven.
In Genesis 35.18 we read an interesting statement, "It came to pass, as her soul was in departing, (for she died) ...". This informs us that death is not the terminus, but a transition from here to eternity. In Luke 16.19-23 we read of two men, representatives of the entire human race, who left this world and arrived in eternity; one in heaven and the other in hell. Where they arrived, has become their endless and changeless abode. They cannot reverse the change and they cannot now opt for the other destination; their choice is irrevocable. In the past hour, thousands have arrived similarly in their chosen, eternal destination. We will all, without exception, arrive there one day.
Most of us will depart this life, suddenly and unexpectedly but our arrival in eternity is beyond all doubt. In love to your undying soul, I ask you, "Eternity, where?"


Trust Christ and enjoy the confidence of the apostle Paul, "... having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better" Philippians 1.23.

 

 

Reproduced from "Assembly Testimony" obtainable from W. Neill,
109 Lurgan Road, Banbridge, BT32 4NG, N. Ireland

 

Bible Verse

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Romans 1.16)

 

 

 

 

 

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