15 Oct 2022
The book of Ecclesiastes describes vividly ‘life under the sun’, that is, life on earth in a state of fallenness and guilt, (man’s natural condition), cut off from God’s life, exposed to His judgement, and under demonic control, from which flows only misery, vanity and meaninglessness. The conclusions that the Preacher arrived at come forth from observations and experiences in many and varied areas of life, (he had all the resources to ‘taste’ all these areas) and he found it very frustrating that he could not have all the satisfactory answers to his queries and his search for wisdom.
Can the meaningless and dissatisfaction be changed, is there an answer to all the frustrations and ’emptiness’ seen and experienced in ‘life under the sun’ that is, life on earth?
Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). The answer is in Him; the eternal abundant life (contrasted with the meaninglessness of ‘life under the sun’) is found in Him; the way to God the Father is Jesus. Jesus is actually saying that a filial relationship to God is possible through relating to Him (Jesus) and his mediatorial ministry – not otherwise. For sonship of God, in the sense that guarantees mercy and glory, is not a fact of natural life, but a gift of supernatural grace.
“To all who did receive Him (Jesus), who believed in HIs name, He gave the right to become children of God ” (John 1:12).
Recently, someone sincerely asked me why she needs Jesus, and she honestly declared that she does not want Jesus or to be like Him – what is wrong in pursuing her own goals and desires in life?, she asked.
I trust that this sharing may help her to receive the truth and the answer.
The spiritually unadopted lack a God they can call Father. There is only one way they can find Him as Father, and that is by coming to terms with God’s Son, Jesus Christ, the living Lord.
The Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Trinity (Godhead), enables us to see the glory of Christ glorified, and to live in fellowship with Him(Jesus) as our Mediator and with His Father as our Father; the Spirit introduces us to the innermost essence of heaven.
At the heart of our thoughts about heaven is the actual relationship with the Father and the Son that is perfected there. It is of this that the Spirit’s present ministry to us is the first instalment. By means of the ministry to us of the indwelling Spirit, heaven begins for us here and now, as through Christ and in Christ we share in His resurrection life.
“You have died,” writes Apostle Paul to believers, “and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3). This ‘life’ is eternal life, heaven’s life, which never starts anywhere else but here.
Contrast this with what we read in Ecclesiastes. The preacher’s reiteration that ‘all must die’ refers to physical death, but Apostle Paul was referring to death to the old life and life in the new life in Christ – this explains why he exhorts Christians to put off the old man (the old life) and put on the new man (the new life in Christ – it also makes sense for him to declare that if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation.
There is no way out except in believing and receiving Christ; there is no real meaning and real eternal abundant life except in Christ. “Christ in you” is indeed the hope of glory. If you do not want Jesus and you do not want to be like Jesus (in the new life in Him), you would die physically and spiritually, apart from God and in condemnation (for that is the result of the Fall in Genesis). He (Jesus) is the only way, the truth and the life – no one can come to God except through Him. No amount of your earthly goodness, no amount of ‘religion’ (remember Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews and one schooled in the Torah), no amount of earthly good works can make you ‘fit’ to enter the kingdom of heaven.