To every matter there is a bright as well as a dark side, a vein of good is found in every pit of evil. It is well for us if, while the flesh mourns over trials here on earth, our faith triumphs in divine steadfastness hereafter in heaven. Hope! Hope!! Hope!!! Is a way of walking to cast all care upon the Lord and then to anticipate good results from the worst scenario of the earth. To this truth Charles Spurgeon posit that “out of the rough oyster shell of difficulty, faith extracts the rare pearl of honor; from the deep ocean caves of distress, it uplifts the priceless coral of experience. When the flood of prosperity ebbs, faith finds treasures hidden in the sand; and when the sun of delight goes down, faith turns her telescope of hope to the starry promises of heaven. When death itself appears; faith points to the light of resurrection beyond the grave, thus making our dying Benoni to be our living Benjanin”[i] -Genesis 35:18.
[i] Spurgeon C.H., Morning & Evening (U.S.A: Whitaker House, 2002),149
We have become accustomed to think that God’s kingdom is not intended for this world; that, virtually, this is the devil’s world and that God’s kingdom is in some other sphere, to which He is to take good people when they die. What is the kingdom of God; the kingdom that Christ taught us to pray for? Is it not in the doing of God’s will, not by automata, not by animals who are compelled, but by intelligent beings clothed with free will, intelligent beings knowing good from evil? “Thy kingdom come!” when Christ taught that prayer He did not mean that humans should idly phrase these words, but that for the coming of that kingdom humanity must work as well as pray! By so doing they will “BE SURE OF HEAVEN.”
Being a Christian is a full-time job. All of us on earth who believe in Christ are constantly employed in this full-time job of living as Christians in a non-Christian World- the Terrible, Mournful and Corrupt Hopeless World. Being a Christian affects us constantly in the way we live, from day to day, at home, or at work, or even at play. It demands constant attention, diligent effort and mental and spiritual energy. It is something we have to keep working on (Philippians 2:12-13). It will not come about by itself. But it is gainful work, because it yields important results. It is this kind of consistent, daily Christian living that exerts a great influence on those around us: our family, our friends and colleagues. The influence that we have on others can make a really important permanent impact on them. Being Christians means living lives that will consistently display God’s work and power in our lives. It means consciously making a good impression on those around us, by our godly influence, so that they, too, will want to know and follow Christ. Now, if we say that we are Christians, and yet live our lives in an ungodly way, influencing those around us to think negatively about our Saviour and life after death, then there might be something terribly wrong about our claim to be Christ’s followers. There are many people today who claim to be Christians, but their lives obviously contradict this claim. This is a real problem-a problem that is growing in many churches today.