Wineskins Archive

December 18, 2013

This World is Not My Home (Sept-Dec 2010)

Filed under: — @ 9:24 am and

By Edward Fudge

The larger truth, as we all know in our most serious moments, is that this world is preparatory to another, for which God is doing all that we will allow to get us ready. “Our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil 3:20). “Those who buy something [should behave] as if it were not theirs to keep; those who use the things of the world, as if not engrossed in them. For this world in its present form is passing away” (1 Cor 7:30–31). Bernard of Cluny was right–“Brief life is here our portion, the tearless life is there.”

Immortality is Christ’s accomplishment and the Christian’s hope. Mortality is what I am encountering more and more frequently in daily experience. The notion that we don’t have time to be sick, or that infirmity only comes to other people, quickly vanishes when illness actually strikes. The truth is that from the day we leave the womb, we are dying people living in broken bodies in a fallen world. Sickness is not the wonder — wellness is the grace. Saying so is not yielding to morbidity but simply telling the truth.

We live, die, and, after the resurrection, meet our Maker. To the believer, that is a sweet promise, not a threat or a warning. The “good news” of the gospel is (as the contemporary communion meditation in the Book of Common Prayer reminds us), that God “in [his] infinite love made us for [himself], and when we had fallen into sin and become subject to evil and death, [he] in his mercy, sent Jesus Christ, [his] only and eternal Son, to share our human nature, to live and die as one of us, to reconcile us to [himself], the God and Father of us all.” He will never leave us or forsake us now and nothing can separate us from his love. Hallelujah!

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