YPS Magazine

ISSUE: 2012, Volume 9, Issue 2

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How to enjoy eternal life

by Paul Coxall, Aberdeen, Scotland

When we receive a gift, one of the most important questions that we could ask is, ‘How can I get the most enjoyment out of this gift?’ Hopefully, instructions will come from the manufacturer about how we can enjoy our new possession. The book of Deuteronomy records how the nation of Israel was to possess and enjoy the land that was given to them by God. They had been delivered from cruel slavery, and it was vital for them to know how they could enjoy all that God had given them, so that it might be well with them, Deut. 6. 3. 

 

Although the Christian has not been promised a plot of land, we are the possessors of the greatest gift that could ever be given, eternal life. It will benefit us immensely if we apply three of the principles that are given in Deuteronomy chapter 6 to our lives so that we fully enjoy the precious possession that God has given us.

 

No 1 – Confession

‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord’, Deut. 6. 4, were words of great importance to the Jew. This statement reminded them about the relationship they had with God, and the nature of God. As they were about to enter a land where the current inhabitants worshipped many gods, it was important that they had a firm understanding of the true and living God.

 

It is also of vital importance that young Christians have a true and accurate view of the Lord Jesus Christ. They go into a world where the Lord Jesus Christ is seen as one of many options. In order to be saved the young believer will have confessed, to God, that Jesus Christ is Lord and that He is the Saviour, Rom. 10. 9. Sadly, they will experience various attacks on the Person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. The confession ‘Jesus Christ is Lord and Saviour’ must be constantly strengthened. The young believer who engages in the prayerful reading and memorization of scripture will develop a strong confession which cannot be swayed.

 

No 2 - Command

The command to love, Deut. 6. 5, seems strange to some people. Can we choose to love? Is it not just an emotion? While love certainly is an emotion it is also an act of the will. The nation of Israel had experienced God’s love in rescuing them from the tyranny of slavery. They learned that God had not chosen them because they were the biggest or best, Deut. 7. 7. This knowledge about God would cause them to love Him and enjoy His presence. The believer knows that God is love and that He has shown His love towards them, Rom. 5. 8. A knowledge and appreciation of this love will result in love for God, 1 John 4. 19. 

 

How do we know and show that we love God? By obeying Him! Obedience to the Lord’s words results in the enjoyment of His presence. The Lord Jesus said, ’If a man love me, he will keep my words and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him’, John 14. 23. The nearness and enjoyment of the divine presence is promised to all who obey the Lord out of love for Him. If we are not enjoying eternal life it could be due to a lack of obedience, stemming from a lack of love. An increasing love for the Lord will result in obedience and enjoyment of eternal life.

 

No 3 - Conversation

Apparently we all speak, on average, about 16,000 words per day. Speech can be helpful in building up our faith and enjoying God’s presence. 

 

The Lord commanded Israel to have His words on their heart, and to speak about them to others, Deut. 6. 6-7. Parents were commanded to teach God’s word diligently to their children in the home. Although we may not all be parents, we can follow the principle of speaking about God’s word in the home and when we are outside, in school, college or the workplace. God’s word was also to be spoken about in the early morning and in the late evening.

 

How many of our 16,000 words are used in speaking about God’s word? If we want to enjoy God’s gift of eternal life then we should speak to everyone about the Lord Jesus, believers and unbelievers. Experience proves that our words echo back to us, and we are blessed when we speak about the Lord Jesus.

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