Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Preparing for that last Great Trip



John 5:39  You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.



Eternity is defined as time that has no beginning and no end.  In most translations of the Bible, God is described as eternal (see Deuteronomy 33:27).  Our home after we die is described as eternal in Ecclesiastes 12:5.  The life of a believer in Christ is called eternal life in the New Testament.  Eternal life seems to have quality to it.   It is a life given to us by God that fits us for an eternity with God.  It also seems to have quantity.  That is it lasts forever.  An unbeliever is not spoken of as “living” after dying since an unbeliever never obtained eternal life by trusting in the Lord Jesus.  However, the Bible is quite clear that an unbeliever exists eternally after death.


Eternity boggles my mind.  I can’t get my head around it.  However, I am not really concerned with eternity looking backward.  I am concerned with eternity looking forward.  The reason I am a believer in Christ today is that I wanted to be sure I was ready for that last great trip—the one where the body goes to the grave and the real person in that body meets his maker.  Eternity is so long and time is so short, I wanted an assurance policy that I was prepared for that last great trip. 


Preparing for a trip in this Life

When we plan a trip in this life, there are three things we want to know.  We want to know where we are going.  We need to know where we are right now, then we need to find the best route between where we now are and our destination.  Thank the Lord for maps and more currently for cell phones with maps and GPS.  My wife and I are planning to make a trip to another country this week.  We have our passports, we have talked to people about what clothes to pack, we have plane tickets, we have gotten immunizations, and we have friends that are going to meet us on the other end.  We have taken pains to make sure that we are prepared to travel so that we can enjoy the trip. 


If preparing for a trip in this life is so important, doesn’t it make sense to prepare for that last great trip from this life to the next?  Can proper preparation be made?  I know that this is where this meditation will get sticky because there are so many people with so many opinions about Who God is and how to be sure of ending up in eternal bliss and not in eternal torment.  In preparing for my trip, I have read everything I can about our destination.  I have gotten insurance against the possibility of a trip interruption.  But I have never been to the country I am going to, I am taking other people’s word for the fact that it even exists.


I am preparing to go to a place after I die that I have never been to either.  Since the Bible speaks of heaven and hell, I want to make sure I am going to the right place.  But I am taking other people’s word for the fact that heaven and hell really does exist.  I am taking the word of Peter and James and John who saw the Lord and Moses and Elijah on the mount of transfiguration in Israel.  Moses and Elijah had been dead for quite a number of years.  But here they were.  They were recognizable and talking to the Lord.  I am taking the word of John who gives us a vision of the future after being caught up to heaven in Revelation 4:1.  I am taking the word of a rich man in Luke 16:19-31.


Are All Christians Ready?

The Word Christian is used in many different ways today.  A Biblical Christian has trusted in the Lord’s sacrificial death and is ready for a trip to heaven.  Their sins are forgiven.  Their lives and thinking were changed when they came to faith in the Lord.  But many people call themselves Christians and they have no clue as to what the Biblical Gospel message is.  That is why this verse has been my meditation today.    Search the Scriptures, for in them you THINK you have eternal life.  If you read this passage in its context, the people the Lord was talking to did not believe in Him, they had not received Him, and yet they thought they had eternal life.  The Lord says that they did not believe the writings of Moses that they said would give them eternal life.


So What Should we Do?

First of all we need to prepare.  Only a fool would take a trip where they want to end up in a certain place without making any preparations.  If we would quit reading books about the Bible, if we would quit assuming that it takes a seminary degree to understand the Bible and if we all would sit down and really read the Bible with a desire to know if it makes sense, I am convinced that something miraculous would take place.  You would in some way be convinced that the Lord really is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6).  I do not know how the Lord does this miraculous work in each of our lives, but for those of us who really want to know we are prepared, the Lord uses His Word to bring us to faith.  Then we don’t have to THINK we have eternal life.  We will be able to say we KNOW we have it, because we will be depending on God’s promises as given to us in this old book.  We will not be depending on what men say.  We will be depending on what God says.  And as you read this book (in different versions if necessary), I am convinced that you will be as convinced as I am, that eternal life is available and obtainable.


Bruce Collins


Meditation for the week of January 31, 2016

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