A program on a science channel dealt with “Venus: Earth’s Evil Twin.” The two planets are similar in size, and according to the experts, have the same origin. But Venus is hellish, with acidic atmosphere and temperatures in the monstrous range.
Early in the program, the scientists began telling how Earth’s future is to become as Venus is now. Not next week. But in the distant future.
Now, personally, I have no trouble with anything that occurs on this planet a billion years down the road, which is the time period the experts dealt with. For one thing, I won’t be here, and neither will you. For another, scripture says “the heavens will be destroyed by burning, and the elements will melt with intense heat” (2 Peter 3:12).
Wonder why they feel the need to say such?
Watch enough such science shows, and you come away feeling that their purpose was to unnerve the viewer, to frighten the audience with the awful fate awaiting the planet and possibly to eradicate any primitive thoughts of a God who could be expected to rescue us from such a future.
I suspect their ploy works. If one watches enough of this stuff, it would.
But there is one thing–one word actually–which keeps people of faith grounded, one word which is our answer to those who would frighten us about the future of this universe.
Not religion, not faith, not hope, not perseverance or a thousand other important words. Just this one: Jesus.
Jesus Christ is the answer to our fears, the basis of our hope. He is “the author and perfecter of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).
“This hope we have as an anchor to our souls” (Hebrews 6:19).
In the introduction to the Epistle to the Hebrews, the unknown author begins, “God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world” (Hebrews 1:1-2). Jesus is the last word from Heaven!
And if that’s not enough, the passage continues…
“He is the radiance of His (God’s) glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power” (1:3). That’s food for reflection for the next two years!
Scripture strains at the seams with the various depictions of the uniqueness and glory of the Lord Jesus Christ. Here are a few…
–“…These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might which He brought about in Christ, when He raised him from the dead, and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come. And He put all things under his feet, and gave him as head over all things…” (Ephesians 1:19ff.)
–“God also highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth…” (Philippians 2:9)
–“He (Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of all creation….” (Colossians 1:15). “Christ Himself, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (2:3).
What specifically was there about Jesus which causes us to say such a thing, to make such a claim? Answer: His uniqueness.
He was virgin born. Only He did this.
He was full of grace and truth (John 1:14). Only He was this.
He lived a sinless life. Only He accomplished this.
He died a vicarious death. Only He fulfilled this.
He rose from the dead the third day and later ascended into Heaven, events witnessed by hundreds and attested by evidence which is convincing to impartial investigators even to this day.
Message to fear-mongers: Believers in Jesus Christ are forbidden to partake of the stuff you are peddling, ever again.
Nothing says that better than Hebrews 2:14-15…
Since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil; and might deliver those who through fear of death were subject to bondage all their lives.
Think of that…
Fear of death causes bondage. It keeps people from doing bold things they should be doing. And the devil had been holding the power of death and scaring people. But through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, that power has been restored to its rightful Owner. In Revelation 1, in John’s vision of the ascended Jesus, Jesus has the keys of death, hell, and the grave. (1:18)
And then we have this…
God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7).
More than anything else, our hope is based on the resurrection of Jesus from the dead.
Do not take this lightly. Disprove his resurrection and you have pulled the pin on Christianity.
“For if we believe that Christ died and rose again,” Paul says in I Thessalonians 4:14, “even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.”
“But now is Christ risen from the dead, the first-fruits of those who are asleep” (I Corinthians 15:20).
Settle the resurrection of Jesus and everything else falls into place. Disprove the resurrection and it all goes away.
I suggest those wishing to pursue this read almost anything from Lee Strobel. Go to www.leestrobel.com and scroll down for a list of books he has authored. Or, visit an online bookseller and type in his name. His books on “The Case For…” are as good as they come, and I recommend them highly.
Whatever else you do as you investigate this subject, bear in mind that the stackpole of it all, the reality above all else, is the Lord Jesus Christ. Keep the focus on Him.