Gospel Gazette Online
Volume 20 Number 2 February 2018
Page 15

How Long Will I Live?

Raymond Elliott

Raymond ElliottRecently I received a questionnaire from the investment company where I have my IRA. One section dealt with “Investment Time Horizon.” In other words, how many more years do I plan to live and invest in my IRA. The choices ranged from “0-2 years” to “more than 20 years.” First of all, I have not invested any monies in my IRA in several years. I have been doing the opposite. I have been receiving the much-needed funds to supplement my Social Security income.

Well, I am approaching my 82nd birthday, the Lord willing, in the month of May. So, how many years should I select, if I plan to do any investing in my IRA? By God’s grace, providence and “by reason of strength,” I have surpassed the “four score years” mentioned in Psalm 90:10. My cardiologist, at my last checkup, said, “I will see you next year.” Yet, he did not give me a guarantee when I asked him if he would. He then said, “Has God ever given you a guarantee?”

When you consider the facts, as found in the Word of God, you know that death is no respecter of persons. “The living know that they shall die” (Ecclesiastes 9:5). “It is appointed for men to die once” (Hebrews 9:27). Life “is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away” (James 4:14). Furthermore, death is no respecter of age. During the month of February, 2017, two young men of my acquaintance died unexpectedly. One friend was only forty-eight-years-old, and a relative of mine died when he was fifty-years-old. Someone has said, “The old must die and the young do die.”

Let it be understood, it is not the quantity of life that is important; rather, it is the quality of life that means so much, because it affects one’s eternal destiny. A person who lives for Jesus Christ will die in Christ and will be blessed eternally (Revelation 14:13). An individual who enjoys longevity of life but lives without God will die without God in eternity. “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God [if unprepared]” (Hebrews 10:31).

Are you interested in knowing what selection I chose relative to how long I might live should I decide to invest in my IRA? It is said that a positive attitude contributes to the longevity of one’s life; so, I selected the bracket, (6-10) years, but I did so, knowing that I have no assurance I will live another day. Yet, I have this precious promise from the Lord Jesus Christ: “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die, Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26). I do, because I trust in Him. If we know how to live (in Christ), we will know how to die.

My heart’s desire is that every believer will “repent and be baptized for the remission of sins,” and the Lord will add him or her to His church, of which He is the Savior (Acts 2:38, 47; Ephesians 5:23; Colossians 1:18).

A Present God

Chad Ezelle

“Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, Even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me” (Psalm 139:7-10). God is anywhere and everywhere, but does He sometimes feel far away from you? If so, I hope you realize that it has nothing to do with God and everything to do with us. I can be as close to God as I want to be. I can start each day in prayer, or I can neglect it. I can fill my mind and thoughts with Scripture, or I can choose to think about any number of other things.

Our lives can become spiritual wastelands due to our neglect of God. If we feel distant from Him, it’s something we—only we—can correct.

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