Bible verses to build your life on
Jesus said: “… whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock…” ~ Matthew 7:24
John 10 - Part 4
10... I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
Let’s look at the good news in that verse! “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” – Those are some very interesting words. Jesus came to give us life… The word life in today’s society has MANY connotations. So, what is Jesus describing here? He is describing true life (not the world’s definition) but not just life, life abundantly. Sounds interesting, huh? Now, I know as we study His words and what all they mean for our life, we will notice that He has higher definitions than we do. We commonly look around at life and think – ‘I want more excitement’ or ‘I’m bored, entertain me’. (The last one was a literal quote!) But, it makes the point pretty clearly – we all want something to entertain us because real life and work are hard. Or is it rather our view on life that makes it boring? I believe it is our view that is wrong. As I mentioned earlier in this study series, fantasy is easier for all of us, but it causes such damage… But, notice what Jesus said about Himself. It’s like the 1st half of the verse describes all of satan’s religions and plans for us and what happens when we are ‘our own boss’. But then Jesus gives a beautiful contrast - like a much-needed light in a dark and terrifying place. His plan is that we may find the life He offers and embrace it! Jesus says this in Matthew 10:39 – “39He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.” That is to say – he/she who tries to hold onto what he attributes to be his physical life: health, wealth, prosperity – earthly perspective – they will lose that, because none of us can take any of that into eternity! Here is another verse that describes more: Matthew 16:25 – “24Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone desires to come after Me [to be His disciple], let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 25For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Luke 9:23 notes the word: daily – “… and take up his cross daily…) Wow! Yeah… like wow! That perspective stands in stark contrast to our selfish, self-centered perspective! And what a sad perspective I hold onto compared to His! If we try to save our life – we will lose it – that is as sure a fact as the fact that gravity is real. But, if we lose our life, then we will save it! By the way, this isn’t the accidental, casual careless act of leaving something behind (and yes I’ve done it too – frustrating isn’t it?) This is the intentional letting go of something less important (like wrapping paper) and grabbing onto the real thing! Picture this: you are wandering in the desert – the intensity of the heat is causing you to get exhausted, your throat is parched (very dry), and you are starting to get dizzy – if only you had a glass of water! Then *poof*, a tall glass of sparkling diamonds and a tall glass of cool, refreshing water appear in front of you – which will you choose – you can only choose 1 - which is worth more? Obviously, the glass of diamonds is worth a huge quantity of paper – we call money - J, but would you cling to the diamonds when you are dying of thirst? No, of course not. The heat reminds you of what is more important, what is more valuable. Hold that thought! – “25For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” That’s the idea. When God looks at our globe, He knows that He is one day going to burn everything up: our cars, our houses, our paper money, gold, silver, cell phones, entertainment, fantasy books, movies, magazines, clothes, etc – our earthly possessions are going to one day be destroyed - either by wearing out (in our lifetime) or, ultimately – burned up as described in 2nd Peter 3:10 – “10But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.” (emphasis added ) Then God, speaking through Peter, asks a very important question: “11Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness…?” That is the idea and perspective we need to keep. So back to Jesus’ words. “[But] I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly!” It is only as we keep our perspective right on our possession and the temporary pleasures, that the rest of life will make sense – not until then. Life, and it more abundantly…. I want that!... We all want that – yes?
Now that was the info up to the definition of life – what is this that Jesus is offering? A: Following Him, and as we are faithful with what He has entrusted us with – being faithful in little things: chores, homework, studying, honoring our dad and mom… things God keeps working on me about too. And the more we are faithful in the little details, the more He can use us in His work here on earth. And the more things we are faithful with in His work, the more we will be able to be a part of the amazing things God will do throughout eternity! ~ I don’t know about you, but that sounds like life to me! And with God’s help, I want to walk in a way that is pleasing to Him, so I can get that kind of life! True life for all eternity? Yes, sign me up! For more info on how you can make yourself a more ready-to-use vessel for His work, I encourage you to study out the ‘Parable of the Minas’ (Luke 13:11-27), ‘Parable of the Laborers’ (Matthew 20:1-16), Luke 12:42, as well as rewards: 1st Corinthians 3:11-15 – those will give you a good head-start…)
We need to keep in mind, Jesus doesn’t offer this life and life abundantly to the sort-of-interested, He only offers His salvation and life to those who are fully committed to Him – not perfect, just committed, which is shown by the consistency in seeking Him and learning how to please and follow Him.