Perhaps I’m the only one who has struggled this way, but I suspect not.
Have you ever wondered if Christianity is real? If the events on which we’re staking our eternal destiny are true? In the dark night of the soul, have you ever wondered if Christians down through the ages have all been deceived, and you’re one of the gullible? Or maybe you suspect Christianity might be a fairy tale, like the educated people who are too enlightened to believe in God often tell us. Have you ever questioned whether Christianity is any different than any other religion, and who’s to say our way is any better?
Maybe that little worm of doubt has never wiggled deep inside of you. Perhaps your faith has always marched in a straight line ever upward since the moment of your conversion. Maybe your trust has never wavered, and your commitment has always been strong. God bless you.
But if you’re honest, I suspect you have to admit that every now and then you wonder.
I do, too.
There are many excellent books on the inerrancy of Scripture, proof of the resurrection, archaeological discoveries that support the Bible, and defenses of the faith. I’ve read many, and they’ve reinforced the reasons I believe in Christ. I’m not going to share them today, although if you’re interested, start with Josh McDowell’s bazillion books on apologetics.
What I want to invite you to think about today is this:
What do you think it will be like when we stand before God and know—not hope, not think—but KNOW, deep down in the depths of our souls, that everything we’ve believed is TRUE? When we see Jesus face to face, look deep into his eyes, feel his mighty arms wrap around our shaking bodies, and KNOW he is real? When we look around and see every believing loved one we’ve buried in the ground smiling and laughing and more alive than they’ve ever been?
What will be like when we realize that every gut-wrenching trial, every heartbreaking loss, and every cruel hurt we experienced as Christians had an eternal purpose and nothing was wasted? When we gaze with wide eyes at the splendor of heaven—the golden gates, the River of Life, and God Almighty’s throne—and know it is just as real as the wood, hay, and stubble we’ve left behind? And what will it be like when we realize the struggle is over—forever? No more sickness. No more pain. No more dying.
In Isaiah 25 I caught a glimpse of what that great and glorious day will look like. Listen to the prophet’s words:
“On this mountain the LORD Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples, a banquet of aged wine—the best of meats and the finest of wines.
“On this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples, the sheet that covers all nations; he will swallow up death forever.
“The Sovereign LORD will wipe away the tears from all faces; he will remove the disgrace of his people from all the earth.”
Can you picture it?
As we gaze at the Lord Almighty against the stunning backdrop of heaven, surrounded by the apostles, the patriarchs, the heroes of the faith, and everyone who has ever placed his trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, we will realize, THIS IS REAL. It’s not a dream. It’s not a hope. It’s not a fairy tale. It’s REAL.
A cry will well up from the depths of our grateful hearts as we point to our Savior and utter Isaiah’s prophetical words—“THIS IS OUR GOD! WE TRUSTED IN HIM, AND HE SAVED US!”
This is my favorite part of all—the part where faith becomes sight and believers receive the object of their faith, fist pumping up and down heaven’s streets. I can only imagine. . .
I believe God gives us glimpses of Heaven, like Isaiah shared with us in chapter 25, so we will not grow weary or lose heart.
God is real. Jesus did die and rose again. And one day we will spend eternity with him in heaven.
When the doubts loom large, comfort one another with these words.
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