The Forward Eternal Look
“Ah, but a man’s reach should exceed his grasp, or what’s a Heaven for.” Robert Browning
Of all the extraordinary accounts of faith that are recorded in Hebrews 11, none is so remarkable as that concerning Abraham, who, having received the call from God, moved out and “Looked for a city that had foundations”, whose maker and builder is God. He sojourned as a stranger in a land of promise, and dwelt in tents, both patiently waiting and faithfully working for God. Abraham died in faith, not having received the promises, yet having seen them afar off. The implantation of the seed faith that had been rooted within him had made him a man of spiritual vision – Abraham from that moment on was a man on the move – He had the forward look and was in pursuit of the Eternal. Abraham was a courier of faith – a messenger of hope, a stranger in a foreign land, carrying a promise of a heavenly Canaan; an assurance of things not seen as yet; his hope for the future indeed rested on the Divine Testimony that he had so sublimely received, and in receiving, began to see the invisible, hear the inaudible and touch the intangible – Abraham had the forward look.
Progress is a forward movement; it is a state of moving onward to something better. Nothing in this material universe stands still; there is a constant, often unseen, change being made, an evolvement, a transition, a relentless progression or regression, whichever is the case. Rivers that cease to flow soon become stagnant; muscles waste when not being used; human nature degenerates when abandoned to its own desires. Physical properties, by their very nature will suffer decay. The universe as we know it shall grow old as a garment (Psalm 102.26). The earth pulsates with life, but life at its best has a limited span, and like the flower, will fade.
Since the beginning of time, mighty Kingdoms and Empires have risen up; powerful Monarchs, Kings and leaders have blazed a trail across civilisations and made their mark on the world – but they have all gone and the glory that once was has departed. Jesus said: ‘Heaven and Earth shall pass away, but my Words will never pass away’ (Matt 24:35).
Nothing but spirit and the fruits of it will outlive the ravages of time. Real substance that will last, however, is not to be had by the acquisition of things or the accumulation of material wealth – but in the promotion of things eternal – in the building up of the ‘Spiritual Man’ as God intended – May we all see this truth and embrace the eternal look
“For he is no fool that gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.”
Blessings to you all
Jack has been a faithful member of the Free Methodist Church for 34 years, spending many of those years in leadership. He lives in Lancashire, UK, and has recently celebrated 60 years as being a Christian! Find our more about Jack and the story behind Jack’s corner: Treasures of the Word here.