Looking unto Jesus — chapter by chapter

Choose Wisely (Philippians 3:20)

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

Philippians 3:20 

This week I came across, a most helpful article by our very clear and candid brother Dave Hunt, who has preceded us to Heaven. Consider this excerpt of his insightful viewpoint–

The choice we face isn’t as many imagine, between heaven and hell. The choice is between heaven and this world. Even a fool would exchange hell for heaven; You can’t have both. One can’t live both for God and self. Many so-called Christians find it difficult to resist the temptations of this world and live wholly for Christ.

Why should it be difficult to choose life instead of death, joy instead of sorrow, eternal fulfillment instead of remorse, God’s truth & love instead of Satan’s lies & destructive lusts? The choice is only difficult for those deceived by Satan, and who believing this liar doubt and dishonor God. What an insult it is to our Lord for Christians to act as though surrendering to God’s will were a great sacrifice—as though exchanging this world for heaven were a bad bargain!

Those who in their daily lives opt for this world instead of for heaven shouldn’t be surprised when God gives them for eternity the choice they have made. How can one complain if he’s not taken in the next life to the heaven he consistently rejected in this one? It’s said there are only two kinds of people in the world: those who say to God, “Not my will, but Thine be done,” and those to whom God says, “Not My will but thine be done.” What a tragedy to be chained for eternity to one’s own will instead of His—forever imprisoned with self and separated from God!

Christ’s declaration to the Father, “Not my will, but thine, be done” put Him on the cross. We, too, must deny self in submission to the cross—Mt. 16:24. Doing so puts an end to self, and Christ becomes our very life—our all. This is the path of wisdom—Job 28. The wise will “shine… as the stars forever”—Daniel 12. Man’s destiny is eternal joy in the presence of God, His angels and saints—or a lonely and eternal agony, shut up to self.

William Law expressed with unusual clarity the choice between heaven and this world. He pointed out that a man would be considered insane who spent his life planning the house, tennis court, swimming pool, etc., that he expected to build on Mars—yet someone who spent his life equally absorbed in planning, achieving, and enjoying such things in this world would be respected as successful and prudent. In fact, said Law, both are fools! The first is obsessed with a world where he ‘cannot live’—while the other is attached to a world where ‘he cannot stay.’ The degree of their folly differs only by a few short years.

Jim Elliot, a young missionary martyred in Ecuador in 1956, put it succinctly: “He is no fool who gives up that which he cannot keep in order to gain that which he cannot lose.” What a tragedy to barter eternal life for the pleasures of this world. The Bible does not say that sin has no pleasure; it says that the pleasures of sin can only be enjoyed “for a season”—Heb. 11:25—and a very short season it is, compared to the endless age of eternity. A bad bargain indeed!”

Think on these things—Or as the Psalmist says… Selah