Loading...
Larger font
Smaller font
Copy
Print
Contents
  • Results
  • Related
  • Featured
No results found for: "undefined".
  • Weighted Relevancy
  • Content Sequence
  • Relevancy
  • Earliest First
  • Latest First
    Larger font
    Smaller font
    Copy
    Print
    Contents

    PROMISE OF LIFE

    We have already shown that eternal life is one feature of the Christian’s hope, from the fact that we must be made immortal before we can inherit the kingdom of God. But, if we are immortal by creation, and have a principle in us that cannot die, and that is ever conscious, how can we be said to be hoping for eternal life? If man is in possession of such a principle, an immortal soul or spirit, he must then live eternally. If he already actually possesses eternal life, how is it that he is hoping for it? Paul says, “What a man seeth why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.” Romans 8:24. As eternal life is a matter of hope, the Christian is waiting for it. This is all plain, for eternal life is yet a matter of promise. John says, “And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.” 1 John 2:25.HPGO 23.3

    And at this juncture, we will look at some of the promises of eternal life. Paul says of the righteous judgment of God: “Who will render to every man according to his deeds; to them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory, honor, and immortality, eternal life.” Romans 2:6, 7. To evade the force of such testimony, some have said, “Eternal life means a holy life.” The above text shows that eternal life is a reward to be given to the obedient. Patient continuance in well doing is a holy life, while eternal life is the reward for leading a holy life.HPGO 24.1

    The lawyer who came to Christ inquired, “What good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?” Matthew 19:16. Or, as Luke records it, “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” Luke 10:25. Jesus answers, “If thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.” What the saints receive by inheritance is their reward, and that is not bestowed here, but beyond the Judgment; “Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance; for ye serve the Lord Christ.” Colossians 3:24. Jesus emphatically states that eternal life belongs to the world to come. “And Jesus answered and said, “Verily I say unto you, there is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my sake, and the gospel’s, but he shall receive an hundred-fold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.” Mark 10:29, 30.HPGO 24.2

    Paul speaks very explicitly on the time and manner of receiving eternal life. “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life; whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. I give thee charge in the sight of God, who quickeneth all things, and before Christ Jesus, who before Pontius Pilate witnessed a good confession; that thou keep this commandment without spot, unrebukable, until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Timothy 6:12-14. They are exhorted to faithfulness until Jesus comes, because that is the time when the reward will be bestowed. He states farther down, in the same chapter, “Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to distribute, willing to communicate; laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life.” Verses 17-19. The time to come, when they lay hold on eternal life, verse 19, is the same as the appearing of Christ, verse 14. That is the time, as we are showing, when the reward shall be given.HPGO 25.1

    Paul, also, when speaking of his own reward, locates it at Christ’s coming: “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure [death] is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith; henceforth [from the time of his death] there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, shall give me at that day; and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:6-8. This shows clearly that the crown (reward) of righteousness is to be bestowed at the appearing of Jesus Christ. This crown of righteousness is called “the crown of life.” “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation; for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” James 1:12. See also 1 Corinthians 9:25; 1 Peter 5:4.HPGO 26.1

    Another clear promise of eternal life is recorded by the beloved John: “And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:39, 40. Wherein lies the danger of Christ losing those the Father has given him? It seems from the reading of the above text that if he does not raise them up from the dead at the last day, they will be lost. But it is the Father’s will that they should have eternal life, so they will not be lost, for Christ will raise them up at the last day, to give them eternal life.HPGO 26.2

    In verse 47, we read, “Verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.” But, say you, this text states that we already have eternal life. How, then, can it be a matter of hope? We have it by hope, or in prospect, the same as the apostle says, “We are saved by hope.” Romans 8:24. Some urge that this and similar texts prove that we have already entered upon eternal life, and hence are possessors of immortality. To claim from such texts that we have by nature an immortal part, is inconsistent; for the eternal life spoken of in these texts is obtained by believing. “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life.”HPGO 27.1

    Verse 54: “Whoso eateth my flesh and drinketh my blood hath eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” Here, again, those who take hold of the merits of Christ’s blood become subjects of eternal life and will be raised from the dead to receive that eternal life at the last day. If they are not raised up, as before shown, they will be lost. See, also, John 3:36, and 5:39, 40. But, it is urged, if it is true that we only have eternal life by faith, why is it said so positively, “hath eternal life”? We read (1 John 5:12), “He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” Let verse 11 explain: “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.” We now see how the believer hath eternal life. He is not said to be already absolutely in possession of it; but this life is “in his Son.” As if a person should say he had a thousand dollars, when he had only a draft for that amount, the money being in the bank, yet he says he has the money, because when pay day comes he is so sure the draft will draw the money from the bank. So with those who comply with the conditions of the promise of eternal life, they have a sure promise that they shall have eternal life, if faithful, at the last day. They have eternal life, but it is their wealth in the bank of Heaven, while they have in their possession Heaven’s draft (a sure promise) and the earnest of the Spirit, a witness of their acceptance by the Lord. When pay day (the coming of Christ) comes, they will become possessors of the true heavenly riches, and receive “the crown of life”-the “incorruptible” inheritance. “Ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” Colossians 3:3, 4. Our eternal life is in God, because he “only hath immortality.” He is the only source from whence we can receive life eternal. It is said to be “with Christ,” because upon him has been conferred, by his Father, the right of bestowing immortality and eternal life upon all that accept and believe on the Son and obey God. “As thou hast given him power over all flesh that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.” John 17:2. “As the Father hath life in himself, so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself; and hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.” John 5:26. Through Christ, then, we shall, at the coming of Christ, and the resurrection, receive eternal life from the Father, and in no text is it said that we shall receive eternal life at any other time or by any other means.HPGO 27.2

    Larger font
    Smaller font
    Copy
    Print
    Contents