It’s one of those little fluffy kerfluffles of human philosophy, one that at least has the honesty to face the reality of we’re not home yet and try to make peace with it.
“Maybe it’s about the journey, not the destination”.
I say bogus.
I say the Christian life is about the destination.
(WARNING: Scripture ahead. I know some of you experience an instinct to kinda “check out” and skip Scripture because it’s too dense, too preposition-heavy, too hard to understand, it’s something you just plain don’t like, etc. DON’T. If you’ve honored me by clicking on this post, I urge you to fight that instinct. Read through the Scriptures. There are treasures waiting.)
The words of Peter:
…by His great mercy, He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, reserved in heaven for you, who through faith are protected by God’s power for the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer various trials, so that the authenticity of your faith—more precious than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and rejoice with an inexpressible and glorious joy. (1 Peter 1:3b-8)
Notice where Peter places the payoff of it all: in the future.
Or try Paul on for size:
I consider that our present sufferings are not comparable to the glory that will be revealed in us. The creation waits in eager expectation for the revelation of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not by its own will, but because of the One who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.
We know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved; but hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he can already see? But if we hope for what we do not yet see, we wait for it patiently. (Romans 8:18-25)
That’s a bare smattering of Paul’s anticipations throughout his epistles as he waits for the coming prize. Another famous example comes from 2 Timothy, which we’re studying in church right now, as he pens his last words to his young protege Timothy:
For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. From now on the crown of righteousness is laid up for me, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but to all who crave His appearing. (2 Timothy 4:6-8)
This is how an apostle, imprisoned and abandoned after an earthly journey hardly worth writing home about from a human viewpoint (though he did so anyway), finds consolation. Paul scoffs at the journey. He wants the destination.
And last and hardly least, what does Jesus look forward to?
Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (John 14:1-3)
On what basis is Jesus telling his disciples that their hearts can be untroubled (on the eve of his crucifixion, I might add)? The promise of one day arriving at his Father’s house. Being with him, fully, without veil or barrier or mirror dimly.
Is this what gets you up in the morning?
Unbelieving friends, I don’t know how you do it. I couldn’t imagine sustaining myself with the idea that the value of life lies here, in this write-off of a world. I was overwhelmed by evil last weekend and it left me going, This story had better have a happy ending. Surely we agree there. Surely we share a desire to see evil defeated, justice applied, needs met.
Enough of this wispy, elusive business about the searching being more important than the finding. Jesus has something better. He said that finding his kingdom was like a finding treasure buried in a field. He gave his blood to enable that treasure – himself – and stands even now, hands outstretched, offering to make it yours. Seize it!
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