The present form of this world is passing away. (1 Corinthians 7:31, ESV)
A believer’s mindset should incorporate an eternal perspective.
A casual reading of today’s Scripture might lead us to believe Paul advocated the single life – as he remained unmarried. With this entire chapter devoted to the topic of marriage, it appears as if Paul was giving relationship advice. However, upon looking closer, we find deeper underlying truths that are applicable to our lives today.
In a marriage, both spouses want to please each other. As they do so daily, their hearts, minds, and bodies are distracted from wholehearted devotion to serving God. In the normal course of married life, children, family, situations, and circumstances all demand attention. Paul acknowledges this fact. However, he suggests a counter-proposal. Instead of such daily, human involvement and commitment, we should give our prioritized involvement, attention, and devotion to pleasing God.
Eternal Versus Temporal
I heard a preacher once say, “Christians, don’t drive your stakes in too deep. We’re moving out in the morning.” This mindset cautions against holding firmly to everything this life offers while encouraging an eternal perspective. Having this mindset promotes the following considerations:
- While interacting within (or preparing for) your marriage, stay mindful of the church’s future wedding with the Lamb of God.
- Though mourning or rejoicing, remind yourself we are headed to where all tears will be wiped away and we will rejoice forevermore.
- While accumulating life’s necessary things, continue to lay up treasures in heaven.
- As you interact within your busy schedule, understand that one day soon time shall be no more.
- As you interact with people, fulfill your responsibility to share the Gospel and your faith with them – through your words as well as your lifestyle.
Our life on earth is very short. James associates life’s brevity to mist or steam that quickly vanishes into the air (James 4:14). The average lifespan is approximately 70-80 years (Psalm 90:10). From the scope of eternity, these verses reveal the miniscule duration of our life spent on an earth that will soon pass away. How much better to have an eternal perspective that directly affects our spiritual insight and daily interaction.
- How different would your life be if you incorporated an eternal perspective?
- What earthly pleasure or responsibility is stealing your time with, and service to, God?
- What steps will you take to maintain an eternal perspective while conducting your earthly life?
Editor’s Note: My dad passed away in 1993 – I still miss him incredibly. Yet to this day, I’m reminded of the wise words he would say: “Only one life, t’will soon be passed; only what’s done for Christ will last.”