William Andrew Dillard
“And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:43.
Those who subscribe to the theory of evolution as the force and explanation of mankind have no hope beyond the grave. But Christians have a strong basis of faith and hope for what lies beyond the veil. That hope is abundantly supported by assuring evidence. Let’s think about it.
The Old Testament Tabernacle and Temple consisted of two rooms: the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place. The two were separated by a thick veil. Priests entered the Holy Place in service, but only the High Priest could enter the Most Holy Place and that on the Day of Atonement.
The Holy Place foreshadowed the church, and the Most Holy Place foreshadowed heaven. While much more could be said about this, the point is when our High Priest became the sacrificial Lamb, He entered the Most Holy Place of heaven, making the way for believers, and that veil of the Temple was “Rent in twain.” Upon the death of His saints which is said to be precious, each one follows the path prepared by Jesus right into the Paradise of that Most Holy Place.
Of course, there is another route too many will take. In mere seconds after you slip behind the parted veil of earthly life, you will finding yourself being greeted in joy by angels, departed saints, and Jesus Himself. or you will be getting your first look and terrible experience of indescribable torment. Either way, your future will be irrevocably fixed and eternally unchangeable.
In the gospel of Luke, a record is given of two men moments away from going behind the veil of earthly life. When Jesus was being crucified, two thieves were hanged, one on either side of Him. They cast insults toward Jesus, Mark 15:32
However, one of them realized Jesus’ innocence, and his own sin, and destiny. He rebuked the other thief and asked Jesus to remember him when He came into His kingdom. evidencing repentance and faith. Jesus responded, “I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise” (Luke 23:43). Salvation for the man was immediate. He knew that day where he would spend eternity.
Realizing that we are sinners and placing our trust in Jesus’ death and resurrection assures us that we can immediately know where we will spend our eternal tomorrows. When time comes as it unerringly, but too soon will, for you to irresistibly enter behind the parted veil, where will you find yourself? It is not wise to wait about this decision to trust Jesus. Most people do not have a last minute opportunity. Life is short; hell is hot; and heaven is real. The grace of God fixed so you may have eternal bliss by faith in and through Jesus
William Andrew Dillard
“Hast thou found honey? Eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it.” Prov. 25:16
When you walk into the bookstore and see a table filled with books on dieting, you know it must be early spring. After several weeks largely cabin-bound life of overeating all kinds of foods, people in many cultures turn their attention to not eating.
Surprisingly, food plays an important role in Scripture. God uses it not only to bless us but also to teach us. Misuse of food keeps us from knowing God in ways He wants to be known.
In the Old Testament, God gave instructions to Adam as to what to eat and what not to eat (Gen. 2:16-17). Later He gave the Israelites manna to convince them that He was God and to test them to find out if they believed Him (Ex. 16:12; Deut. 8:16). In the New Testament, the apostle Paul stated the proper attitude for everything we do, including eating: “Whether you eat or drink, . . . do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31).
When we think of food as a friend that comforts us or an enemy that makes us fat, we miss the wonder of receiving with gratitude a splendid gift from God. Obsessive eating or not eating indicates that we are focused on the gift rather than on the Giver, which is a form of idolatry.
When eating becomes a true act of worship, we will no longer worship food. Our appetite for the bread of life is diminished when we make physical food our god.
To preach on the sin of gluttony is far from a popular thing to do, but the Bible has much to say about it, and none of it is good. It is ironic that some folks who would vehemently denounce bad language, alcohol consumption, and a number of other things often follow up their disparaging comments by gorging themselves at a laden table without any noticeable compunction.
Such were the Cretans of Old. Although not specifically labeled as epicurean, enough is said to give the distinct impression that they were just that. The Apostle Paul left Titus in Crete to set things in order and ordain elders in the newly formed church, but he had quite a bit to say about the nature of the Cretans. “Slow bellies” is what he quoted one of their own poets as calling them. Those words simply mean that they were culturally lazy and loved to lay around stuffing their gut.
The apostle admonished Titus to “rebuke them sharply” that they may be turned in their focus from material food and other sins to becoming sound in the faith.
Seeing food as a physical necessity to continue life is supposed to depict the necessity of spiritual food that sustains the life of the soul. Few overeat at that table, but all are invited to do so.
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