Gaining Immortality

Emma Raducanu’s tennis victory was stunning. It certainly makes history. One newspaper described her as having ‘gained immortality’.

No doubt she will be revered and remembered for a very long time. This is not, however, immortality.

Immortality means living for ever; and this also requires being unable to do wrong – unable to sin. Like God, in fact. And only God has immortality as a natural characteristic.

…the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords,who alone has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see, to whom be honor and everlasting power.

1 Timothy 6: 15-16

Only one member of the human race has gained immortality: Jesus Christ.

knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him.

Romans 6:9

Everyone else who has died remains dead. But the amazing gospel message is that God also offers us immortality and a nature like His.

… have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4).

This is the reward of Jesus’ true followers when he returns to the earth.

For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ’s at His coming.

1 Corinthians 15:22-23

While Emma may be famous for a very long time, none of us has yet ‘gained immortality’. But we can have it in the future if we really want it and become a real disciple of Jesus Christ: now.

Election Campaigns

We have recently had several elections across the country. There have been surprises and shocks. Some people are disillusioned with the system and do not vote or take much interest. Others campaign tirelessly for particular causes and chosen candidates trying to make allies. And making promises to improve life.

The Bible makes amazing promises. These centre on Jesus Christ, and a transformed life. God’s guaranteed plan is for him to return to the earth to rule fairly.

He [God} has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising him from the dead.

Acts 17:31

This is our hope. This is our campaign. In the first century the apostles risked life and limb to preach this. Their message was strong and compulsive. God is going to act. He has warned us. We have no excuse to be surprised or shocked when these dramatic events finally unfold. God has elected His son Jesus to rule the world. There will be a change. A permanent change.

He will reign over the house of Jacob for ever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.

Luke 1:33

He will judge Your [God’s] people with righteousness, and Your poor with justice…he will save the children of the needy, and will break in pieces the oppressor…in his days the righteous shall flourish, and abundance of peace, until the moon is no more. He shall have dominion also from sea to sea…all nations shall serve him

Psalm 72: 2-11

The apostles urged, pleaded and begged people to believe. To believe and then to act. They asked people to ally themselves to Jesus. We try to do the same. It is the ultimate election campaign.

Image by OpenClipart-Vectors from Pixabay

Freedom at Easter!

Good news! The rules have been relaxed. Shielding has been lifted. People are less afraid and have more freedom. This has happened part-way through the Jewish festival of Passover, and in time for Easter weekend.

Two thousand years ago just after the Jewish Passover, Jesus’ disciples were cowering behind locked doors for fear of the Jews’ (John 20:19). Jesus had been crucified: their world was shattered; their hopes reduced to tears of despair.

But they soon changed. Jesus was alive again! Raised from the dead never to die again.

I am he who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive for evermore

Revelation 1:18

The disciples were utterly convinced of this. They risked their lives, disobeying the authorities by continuing to preach about the risen Jesus.

This is the bedrock of the Christian faith. It is the best news ever. It is the most important event in the world’s history.

In 1 Corinthians chapter 15 the apostle Paul argued, very strongly, that without this belief:

  • our faith is futile;
    • we are still beset by sins and their consequences;
    • faith in the Word of God is worthless;
    • faith in God’s forgiveness is futile;
    • hope of an after-life is invalid.

These are strong words. In contrast, he tells baptised believers that they are ‘free from sin’, and can hope for eternal life.

But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.

Romans 6:22

Echoing the words of Jesus himself:

“Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin. And a slave does not abide in the house forever, but a son abides forever. Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed

John 8:34-36

And freedom from fear:

So we may boldly say: “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?”

Hebrews 13:6

This is true, eternal, freedom. It is still the best news ever.