God’s Word, Our Eternal Guide
By Mike Henderson
Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever, because “ALL FLESH IS AS GRASS, AND ALL THE GLORY OF MAN AS THE FLOWER OF THE GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERS, AND ITS FLOWER FALLS AWAY, BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you (1 Peter 1:22-25).
In my life I have witnessed two things people intentionally avoid, insurance salesmen and preachers of the gospel. The insurance man is interested in the future security and comfort of the temporal physical existence of you and your family while the preacher is interested in the eternal state of the soul. All to often, if residents know who is calling at the door, the temptation is to avoid — to just not answer. Although there are many reasons why, one that is high on the list is time. That is to say, “I have ample time to make the decision they seek.”
Peter reminds us in the passage above four things:
1. The temporal state of physical existence
2. The eternal state of spiritual existence
3. The temporal state of the glory of mankind
4. The eternal state of the word of the Lord
Time is fleeting. It seems like just yesterday that I was grabbing my fishing pole, at ten to twelve years of age, and heading to the pond. Now I am middle aged and starting to turn grey. Time has passed so swiftly and I know what time I have left will pass just as fast. Thankfully, I took care of insurance and, more importantly, the eternal state in my early years. Peter makes an amazing statement concerning the transfer of states between the temporary and the eternal. To make the transition he draws upon the words of Jesus in John 3:3, 6, one must be born again to to see the kingdom of God. Peter calls it being “born of incorruptible seed.” But how can the process of being born of this incorruptible seed come about? His answer, by allowing the seed of the incorruptible word of God to flourish in our hearts and minds. This happens because the word of God is eternal.
Amazingly, but not surprisingly, people spend most of their lives trying to find the key to happiness and joy in corruptible things — things where moth’s and rust corrupt and destroy, (Matthew 6:19). This world, being tangible, is where most seek to find it. However, when “life” is the question, we must use common sense and realize that nothing in this physical world is incorruptible; it will all soon perish like the morning dew. Moreover, Peter does not want us forget this fact. He states: “ALL FLESH IS AS GRASS, AND ALL THE GLORY OF MAN AS THE FLOWER OF THE GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERS, AND ITS FLOWER FALLS AWAY…” Why then, if there is such a thing as the incorruptible seed (eternal, immortal), do we expend so much energy seeking for fulfillment in the corruptible seed? Could it be that we do not want to face the reality of eternal things? Or that we do not want to allow abstract, yet absolute, truth to be the basis of current and future decisions? i.e., to be a guide? God’s word is our eternal guide. It is incorruptible and final.
If we want to find joy in our physical and temporal existence, taking care of the eternal things through a relationship with God in Christ our Lord, should always be our first priority. This eternal word tells us the following: “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33).
Soon Jesus will be calling His church home. It will be a sad day indeed for all those who chose the physical gratifications over the spiritual truth found in God’s word. He did give us a warning.