This truth was greatly emphasized again in our service last night. Dr. Billy Blakey preached on The Realities of Life. (I borrowed his title for this post and want to share his thoughts.) We are all accustomed to reality shows on TV. A large portion of television is devoted to what is promoted as reality. Now, to some degree we will have to admit that there is a measure of reality in some of those productions, but at best they are temporal. The show will have to develop new ways to keep viewers or their reality will become a thing of the past.
There is a greater reality than that which we view of TV, the reality of our lives. Sadly, many believe that once this life is over, it is all finished. That is certainly not what the Bible teaches. There is an eternal state that is more a reality than the life we currently live. This life is fleeting and everchanging, but eternity will never end. The destination we find ourselves in when this life is over will never change. Once we pass through the gates of death, our eternity is forever sealed.
Dr. Blakely preached from Luke 16:19-31, the familiar passage that deals with the rich man and Lazarus. Allow me to take a moment to share his main points.
I. The Reality of Life and Death - Both men lived and both men died.
II. The Reality of Life after Death - After these men died, they were found in a new and eternal location. Lazarus was taken by the angels into Abraham's bosom. He enjoyed the blessedness of paradise. The rich man died and was buried; And in hell he lift (a continual action) up his eyes being in torments. Death was not the end for either of these men and it won't be for us either.
III. The Reality of Life instead of Death - Clearly we see the opportunity for eternal life instead of eternal death and separation. Christ died that all might be saved. He is the way to eternal life, but we must come to Him in salvation. There will not be any in heaven who are unsaved, and there won't be any missing that were saved.
I am confident in my salvation. I may not know much, but I know I am saved. However, I am reminded of those around me each day who are not ready to meet the Lord should he call for them today. Those who die without Christ will find themselves in hell, sharing a Christless eternity separated from the presence of God and in torment. I don't know about you, but that put things in their proper perspective for me. I need to do all I can to reach them before it is eternally too late.
Life and death are a reality for every man. With the exception of Enoch and Elijah, all who live will face death until the Lord comes for the church. Right now the death rate for humanity is 100%. That is the reality of life; it will not last forever. We must be prepared to meet God when this life is through. I pray that the church will be stirred from her complacency and seek to reach the lost and perishing!