I BESEECH YOU AS STRANGERS AND PILGRIMS

“Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against your soul” (1 Pet. 2:11).

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I’m often amazed at just how many people there are, both within and without the church, who live as though this life is all there is and will ever be. Their affections center round the things of this world instead of on things above (cf. Col. 3:1-2). Worldly minded individuals will go to great lengths in their quest to establish some sense of permanency here on Earth. And yet, no matter what lengths they go to, no matter how hard they try, life here on Earth is temporary. Everything in this life will one day be destroyed (cf. 1 John 2:15-17; 2 Pet. 3:9ff). The only thing that has any permanency to it is man’s soul and the place where that soul goes when the threshold of death is crossed (Ecc. 12:7; John 14:1-3; Heb. 9:27). Indeed, there is life beyond the grave, and that realm of life is eternal (Luke 16:19ff)!

We must never forget that we’re mere strangers and pilgrims in this life, and that we’re just passing through. Thus, it is imperative that we live our lives in view of that which is permanent — eternity! May we be a people who walk by faith and not by sight (cf. 2 Cor. 5:7-11; Heb. 9:27ff). At journey’s end, nothing else will have mattered!

Terry R. Townsend Curry Church of Christ, Jasper, AL

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