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Gospel Gazette Online
Vol.  10  No. 12 December 2008  Page 2                    powered by FreeFind

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For What Is Your Life?

By Rodney Nulph, Associate Editor

Rodney Nulph

To The diligent student of God’s Word, the above title may be a familiar phrase. The title for these thoughts is a partial quote from the inspired writer James. “…For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away” (James 4:14). In the context of this sobering verse, the Holy Spirit reminds each and every human how fragile life really is. Life passes so very quickly and must be lived to the fullest each day. We are only in this body for a comparatively short amount of time! How can the Christian make certain that he lives each day to the fullest so as to not waste his redeemed years?

First, Christians must Daily Outshine the Darkness. Our lives upon this earth are so brief, and therefore, God’s child cannot waste any opportunity to illuminate this dim world. “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid” (Matthew 5:14). It is imperative that each Christian not hide his light, but rather shine brightly. How can we daily outshine the darkness? God’s child illuminates this world by being joyful! Christians have reason to be full of joy, for we know the Savior! Sometime after the birth of Jesus, it is said of the wise men, “When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy” (Matthew 2:10). Christians, like the wise men of old, should radiate with joy because we have seen the Star of Bethlehem! That Bright Star (i.e., the Savior, cf. Revelation 22:16) will cause Christians to glow with joy that cannot be hidden! We have been redeemed and that alone is reason enough to shine! Life is too brief for Christians to not shine; we must daily outshine the darkness!

Second, Christians must Daily Outlast the Discouragement. Discouragement can and will ruin our cause if we are not vigilant. We all face times of discouragement and disappointment. However, this author believes the key to outlasting the discouragement is to remember our help. Christians must understand that we are not in this walk of faith (cf. 2 Corinthians 5:7) alone! We have a Great Help as we go about each day. The sweet Psalmist of Israel, when fighting discouragement, wrote, “Behold, God is mine helper: the Lord is with them that uphold my soul” (Psalm 54:4). There is no discouragement too great for the Christian who realizes, “…The Lord is my helper…” (Hebrews 13:6b). Discouragement may seem to hold on for a long while, but God’s child finds great comfort and encouragement in what Paul wrote to the churches of Christ in Galatia, “And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Galatians 6:9). Life is too brief for Christians to quit; we must daily outlast the discouragement!

Third, Christians must Daily Outwork the Devil. In a world so saturated with sin, it often seems that Christians are not making progress. It even sometimes appears that the devil is winning. However, we know that “God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:9). What a wonderful sentiment to realize the faithfulness of God. Even when it seems the odds are against us, we know that, “The LORD will not suffer the soul of the righteous to famish” (Proverbs 10:3a). Therefore, we must outwork the devil by determinate perseverance! In other words, we must never give up in the work we have been called to do (cf. Mark 13:34). “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord” (1 Corinthians 15:58). Life is too brief for Christians to sit idly by; we must daily outwork the devil!

Beyond doubt, life is as a passing vapor. It is here today and gone tomorrow. Because of the brevity of our stay on earth, God’s children must not waste their redeemed years (Ephesians 5:16; Colossians 4:5). We must daily outshine the darkness, daily outlast the discouragement, and daily outwork the devil. “For truly, what is your life?”

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