What You Can’t See is All that Matters


NOTE: In the heat of all the excitement surrounding the release of my debut novella, I want to pause and celebrate God’s faithfulness over the past two years. This day in 2015, I published the oldest post on this blog. This post here is a makeover of the original piece; retitled, edited and filled with new links. God is faithful and His truths of two years ago are just as true today. 


What causes a successful businessman to feel restless? What makes a suicidal teen reconsider taking her life?

We were created by a God whom we can’t see, but who is very real, active and at work in this world. Inside each of our visible, physical bodies is an invisible, eternal soul that was designed to be with our Creator God. Each person knows deep within their invisible soul that there is an invisible, spiritual world and that it counts for more than any of the things we can see and touch.

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When determining who is welcomed into God’s Kingdom, one factor comes into play: whether or not the individual has trusted in Jesus to save them.

Life on this earth VS. eternity

What if I told you that no physical part of this world and life counts for anything?

“Wait, what!? If I work really hard, earn a good living, marry well and raise a happy family, if I donate to charity and travel the world helping the disadvantaged, doesn’t that mean anything? Doesn’t it even mean… a lot?

In this life, we are approved and disapproved by others based on our physical achievements. But how long will this life last?

60 years?

80 years?

100 years?

That’s not something that your doctor can guarantee you. You don’t have any rights attached to the length of your life. You have some control over it, but ultimately, it’s up to your Creator. Though we may not understand it, He is completely justified to end your time on this earth – or mine – whenever it so pleases Him.

What about after you die? How long eternity will last?

Will God choose you to join His kingdom?

Does all this sound harsh? Listen to what Jesus said to his listeners who complained that his teachings were too difficult:

Does this offend you? Then what if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you – they are full of the Spirit and life.

– John 6:61-63

Jesus has already ascended to heaven – where he was before – and is busy preparing places for those who will join His kingdom. This is one of the two possible places where each soul will spend eternity.Think about it;

Think about it; every single physical body has an invisible soul which will live forever in one of the two following conditions:

  • With God in Heaven (this is how God intended for us to spend eternity when He first created us and before we rebelled against Him), or
  • Apart from God in Hell (this is God’s rightful way of punishing for us for every act of disobedience against Him)

When determining who is welcomed into God’s Kingdom, one factor that into play: whether or not the individual knows and has trusted in Jesus to save them. God won’t consider how much money you have in the bank, or how happy your family is.

The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The spiritual world counts; the physical world doesn’t count at all.

Where will you spend eternity?

 


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13 thoughts on “What You Can’t See is All that Matters

  1. Good post! I was just wondering, though, what did you mean when you said “Will God choose you to join His kingdom?” Do you believe that God picks who He wants to get saved, and if you aren’t picked, you can’t get saved? Just clarifying… 😉

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      1. I do not agree… that sounds a lot like Calvinism (I think; sometimes I get theologies mixed up 😛 ). How can you ever know for sure that you are saved if you don’t know if God predestined for you to be (if that makes sense)? I believe that God knew if we would accept Jesus as Savior, but He didn’t make it so some people couldn’t. 🙂

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      2. It’s fair enough not to agree with me. 🙂 Though it’s not intentional, I sometimes find that I no longer agree with what I believed years ago because my beliefs are unreliable. I think we would both affirm that it’s God’s Word – not anyone’s belief system – that we ought to be concerned about agreeing with. But I’m just wondering (kindly) how you biblically back up that people can come to Jesus without the Father having drawn them, called them, predestined them, or whatever you want to call it. 🙂

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  2. Interesting post! I definitely agree that the spiritual aspects of our lives are so much more important than the temporal, but I wouldn’t say that the physical world doesn’t matter at all–I think spiritual and temporal things work together. (Perhaps the way that we approach temporal things comes from our spiritual position…) It’s not about how much money you make, but about what you do with the money you have. (Like the story of the widow’s mites or the law of tithing at the end of Malachi.) It’s not about how many connections you have, but how much you love one another.

    I think that God wants us to take care of our bodies–you know, be healthy, take care of ourselves, etc. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17) And he wants us to work hard in life–but not for ourselves, for others, for our families, etc. And that doing these things also helps us become more spiritually active and aware. Of course, all these things would come from trusting Jesus, as you said.

    I think in that passage from John, Jesus was referring to “the flesh” as in the carnal flesh–carnal pleasures and desires, or sin–not necessarily all temporal things. Which could be what you were saying as well. 🙂 It all boils down to priorities and what is most important.

    Out of curiosity, what do you believe about resurrection?

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    1. Yes… I suppose we could get particular and delve more into it. Sometimes the line of truth seems to be so thin and hard to grasp.

      What I mean is that I don’t believe anything we do – not even the way we live out our priorities or the way we spend our money – determines our eternal destiny. I believe that such depends solely on whether or not we trusted in Jesus to save us.

      I agree with you that there are relationships between the physical and the temporal, though I do not believe that they work together to earn salvation. Rather, the Spirit gives life and the flesh counts for nothing with regards to attaining eternal life, but the incredible gift of salvation overflows into a life devoted to God bearing the fruit of the Spirit. Nothing we do after we are saved can up- or down-grade our position as heirs to the promise since it was already detirmined when we trusted in Jesus and sealed with the promised Holy Spirit. Does any of that make sense? Do you agree or disagree with certain points?

      As for resurrection, I believe that Jesus was the firstborn from among the dead (Colossians1:18) – that is the first to physically rise from physical death in His glorified body. And I believe that just as Jesus rose from the dead, so will the brothers and sisters who fall asleep in him – or die – or those who have fallen asleep in Him in the past (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14). I believe that our resurrected bodies will be different to our current bodies. I don’t know what these bodies will be like, except that they will be of a different kind to our bodies now (1 Corinthians 15:39-40), imperishable, in glory and in power (verse 42 and 43). I don’t know if this answers your question… let me know. 🙂 What do you believe?

      Also, can I just say that it was lovely to hear from you after what seems a long while! You remind me by your comment to catch up with you on your blog! Thanks for touching bases with me when I’ve been so caught up in business and haven’t visited you there in a while!

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      1. I agree that salvation comes through trusting Jesus to save us–however, it’s my belief that as you come closer to Jesus and trust him more and more, your life begins to change. All things are affected, both spiritual and temporal. So while what you do temporally doesn’t necessarily determine whether you are saved or not, it is a sign of how Jesus has worked in you. Obviously, the spiritual aspect is essential–without coming to Jesus, you can’t be saved–but I believe it is more of a process than a one-time event. Are you speaking of a process or a one-time event when you say “when we trusted in Jesus and sealed with the promised Holy Spirit”? If the latter, doesn’t it continue to matter whether you continue to trust in Jesus? Isn’t it important to come closer to him?

        (Note: some of the references below come from LDS scriptures. You can find them by googling them or on lds.org/scriptures, if you wish, though I also tried to find Bible scriptures that corresponded.)
        I also believe Jesus was the first to rise from the dead, and since he died and lived again, he paved the way for all of us–both the wicked and righteous–to live again through resurrection (1 Cor. 15:22). There was a resurrection of the righteous at Christ’s death (Matt. 27:52-53, 3 Nephi 23:9-10) and another when Christ will come again (1 Cor. 15: 23, 1 Thes. 4:16). Then the wicked will be resurrected after the thousand years of peace spoken of in Revelation (Rev. 20:4-6). Resurrected bodies will look like ours but perfected, but there are different levels of resurrected bodies: celestial, terrestrial, and telestial (1 Cor. 15: 40-41, Doctrine and Covenants 76:50-98, specifically verses 70, 78, and 81). Here’s an LDS guide to the scriptures on the topic of resurrection: https://www.lds.org/scriptures/gs/resurrection.html?lang=eng&letter=R

        Anyway, the reason I asked in the first place was because we believe that receiving a body is an essential part of God’s plan for us and a celestialized body is needed for us to continue to progress in the life to come–so, in that way, the flesh itself (as in, not the carnal nature but our actual, physical bodies) can’t count for nothing. I’m just curious what your opinion is on that…the purpose behind our bodies and/or the resurrection.

        Haha, yeah, I haven’t posted in a while! Thanks for checking, though. 😛 Hopefully, I’ll be able to post today or sometimes soon…

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      2. Oh for sure! I completely agree that as we grow in the Lord, all aspects of our lives will change! The change starts in our hearts with such as the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-24) and naturally leads to a change in our physical behavior. How can someone with the fruit of the Spirit continue in the acts of the flesh (some of which are listed immediately before the fruit of the spirit in Galatians 5:19-21)? A change of heart leads to a change of behavior. In fact, we can tell, to an extent, who has trusted in Jesus and received salvation by looking at their deeds. Theres a whole passage in James 2 (verses 14 – 18 specifically) that shows very clearly that faith without deeds is dead. But you already know all this.

        I think where we believe differently is that I am convinced that works come *after* saving faith, as a result of it and in evidence of it, but by no means to supplement any lack where faith by God’s grace is not enough by itself (because it *is* enough). That’s the view that Paul maintained despite opposition in Romans 3:28. Galatians 2:16 is also very clear that “a person is not justified by the works of the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ.” (Direct quote) Do you ever feel that the LDS scriptures contradict the Bible?

        To answer your question about whether salvation is progressive or a one-time event, I would say that it’s both as well as a future event that has yet to occur. I’ve heard it explained like this, and I agree, that there are three parts to salvation: justification, sanctification, and glorification. Justification is a one-time event. It’s the moment we believe in Jesus and He marks us with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13). We can’t be partially marked or partially sealed; it’s one or the other. Justification is followed by sanctification which is the life-long process of God conforming us to the image of His Son. This is the putting off of the old self and the putting on of the new self talked about in Ephesians 4:20-24. Sanctification ends in glorification which is when we will receive our glorified bodies that we’ve talked about and when God’s children will no longer be tempted by sin (See 1 John 3:2). No wonder it’s called glorification; what a glorious day it will be! Just think; an impure thought will never again cross our minds even by chance! Everything we think will be noble and lovely and praiseworthy!

        Anyways, that’s the really long answer to whether I think salvation is a one-time event or progressive. What is you answer? I kind of deducted that you believe salvation it a life-long process, but how would you elaborate? I certainly agree that it matters that we continue to draw nearer to Jesus throughout our lifetime and that we continue to trust Him. But if we’ve been saved (as in justified) then that will be inevitable as He sanctifies us. We will already be sealed with His Holy Spirit and our eternal destiny will already be secure but He will be working in our lives.

        Okay… I see why you asked that question about what I believe about the resurrection of the dead and how it tied in to my original post. I *think* I may have already explained what I am convinced of in the process of answering your other question… because yes, I agree that God’s children will receive physical glorified bodies and we will dwell eventually on a physical new earth. And I agree that a change of heart will result in changes in our physical lives (ie. where we go, how we dress, what we celebrate, how we treat our bodies, etc), but if a non-believer does all these physical, outward works perfectly (if it were possible) that would not save him/her. Does that make sense to you? Or does it not seem possible? And what do you mean when you talk about us continuing to progress in the life to come? What sort of progress? Do you not believe that we will no longer struggle with sin? Heheh, no it’s my turn to be “just curious what your opinion is,” but also a little concerned. I think this is more important a matter than whether we celebrate Halloween or how! I hope that God will continue to work in us both that we may understand His Truth more and more.

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  3. Beautiful post, Jordy! Congratulations on two years, and what a wonderful way to begin a new blog- by directly pointing your readers straight to what really matters in life (and after). Much better than the typical “introduction” post of a new blogger! 🙂
    It’s certainly sobering to consider that everyone’s soul will exist forever- in one place or another- due to a merciful yet just God, who, like you said, is completely justified in whatever He does. What we don’t see now is definitely what matters in eternity!
    Also, I’m honored that you linked to my past blog post relating to this topic. Thank you, and thank you for being such a light for God to your readers through your blog. xx

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    1. Thank you, Emily! And thank you for continuously engaging with me here on my blog! You’re a channel for God’s encouragement to me.

      It’s funny… I scheduled this post some months back and was caught off guard when it published this week; I had forgotten about it! It was good for me to read, too. 🙂

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