Live Different: Think Next Life

“But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For this is the reason the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead, so that they might be judged according to men in regard to the body, but live according to God in regard to the spirit.” (1 Peter 4:5-6)

Sometimes Christians fall into self-pity or confused thinking when we can only see life from what we ourselves stand to lose and gain.

runWe might feel bummed to miss out on the pleasure hunt, not to dive into the flood of selfish sex, drinking, and parties. We might feel burdened to pay the price of maybe being mocked (or worse) for following Jesus. We feel good thinking about making good use of our lives and receiving our reward in heaven.

But what do we feel for those who might mock us for believing in Jesus, for not joining in the pleasure parade? Do we believe in eternity enough to fear for them, to want to offer them the way out of their dead-end thinking and into a relationship with God that will provide joy (and pleasure) forever?

They will give an account to the judge after this short, painful life is over. That’s far scarier to imagine than the worst the world can do to those who follow Jesus on this side of eternity. What can you do to offer the good news of God’s grace through faith in Jesus to those you know who still need to hear and understand it – even those still living deep in sin, even those who think you foolish for trusting Christ?

Think: Do you know Christians who seem to feel sorry for themselves because being a Christian limits their options or makes them feel foolish in the eyes of the world? Do you know Christians deeply concerned for the eternal destiny of the unbelievers they know?

Pray: Thank God for helping you to believe the gospel and trust in Jesus for your salvation. Thank him that you will live forever in joy even if you suffer in some ways now for following him.

Do: Notice this week the attitudes you hear from other Christians about what we gain and lose by being Christ-followers.