April 2018

Live Forever

Jesus said to them, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life…Because I live, you also will live.” (John 14:6a, 19b)

          Easter celebrates that Jesus is victorious over death. He offers that victory to mankind. Jesus Christ fulfilled Scripture, every “iota” and “dot” (Matthew 5:17-18). God “desires all people to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth” (1Timothy 2:4). The truth is that Jesus Christ was crucified and died for all sin. He rose victoriously on a Sunday morning. He paid for our salvation so that we can live forever. He offers this victory to mankind in, with, and through His Word and Sacraments.

          A couple years ago I heard a song on a secular station that intrigued me. It had a catchy tune, and a refrain that joyfully exclaimed, “We’re gonna live, We’re gonna live forever.” I thought, “Yes, that is a nice message; in Jesus Christ we will live forever.” I studied the rest of the lyrics, and the song lost spiritual validity. The 1st verse is a “dream,” the second promoting “feeling,” and the third “all that I don’t know.” It would be nice to have that song redone. The1st verse could be Christmas: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…” (John 3:16a); the 2nd, Easter: Jesus Christ’s Victorious Resurrection--He is risen and because He lives, “you also will live”; and 3rd, all the things that God has made known for us to have life to the full now and life forever.

          Many people are controlled, encouraged, and/or haunted by dreams. I appreciate that the vast majority of my dreams are so outlandish that they are quickly forgotten. However, I have had a handful of dreams that could be controlling and/or encouraging or haunting. The best practice with these dreams is to apply Scripture to confirm them or cast them out.  Our sinful flesh is heavily impacted by things in this world that Satan uses to mislead and tempt us.  Those vices can work deceptive dreams in mankind.

          Many people are controlled, encouraged, and/or haunted by their feelings. Some people never remember a dream, which can be quite a blessing; however, we all have feelings and are impacted with them continually. Feelings will not have us live forever. There is nothing within us that pays for our salvation. Feelings are an unstable and turbulent environment as our rule and guide. We have witnessed how feelings are regularly involved with when people will not be involved with a variety of things: “they hurt me, I don’t feel welcome, I don’t feel touched, I don’t feel_____________.”

          Many people are controlled, encouraged, and/or haunted by what they do not know. It is fairly obvious how we can be controlled and haunted by what we do not know, but encouraged? Example: at the top of this page only part of John 14:6 is quoted, here is the rest of the verse. “No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Christ does not shy away from the exclusive message requiring Him in order to live forever. When mankind does not know due to ignorance or rejection, people develop a multitude of false ideas encouraging any spiritual thought.

          Christ has done all that is necessary for mankind to live forever. God offers this everlasting gift in, with, and through His Word and Sacraments. God even creates, enlightens, and nourishes faith in Christ that receives the Word and Sacraments.

The Lord be with you,  

Pastor Wiseman