Thanksgiving for the Kingdom of God
Proper Rejoicing for the Kingdom – Part II
Scripture Reading: Luke 10:17-20
Key Verse: Luke 10:20
“However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
During a time of mourning over the loss of a loved one, a believer may say something like, “I don’t know how people get through a situation like this without the Lord in their lives.”
We who have Jesus in our lives understand how critically important it is when someone passes from this life to the next. We know that there is a next life and that there are only two options: heaven or hell. Hell is an awful thing to think about, so it is understandable why we do not hear or read about it as much as we hear about heaven.
Many claim faith in Jesus yet do not believe in an eternal hell. The problem is that Jesus spoke more about hell than He spoke about heaven.
Jesus described hell as a place of torment and the gnashing of teeth (Luke 13:28). Jesus also said that hell is a place of never-ending punishment for those who refuse the gift that He paid dearly for on the cross (Matthew 25:46). The Bible also assures us that every living person will have the chance to say “yes” to God’s gift of heaven (2 Peter 3:9, 1 Timothy 2:3-4).
The reason it is important to understand the Bible’s teaching about hell is that we can rejoice more fully about heaven when we do.
We studied in yesterday’s devotional about Jesus telling His disciples that they should rejoice more because their names are written in heaven rather than miracles they were a part of.
Once we understand the reality of hell, we can understand why Jesus said that. If God gave us five seconds to view hell, we would have no trouble for the rest of our lives here on earth remembering to praise Jesus for writing our names in Heaven.
I am so grateful that I can see and believe in the Kingdom of God. I am eternally grateful that I believe in what Jesus did for me on the cross, forgiving me of my sins, and writing my name in Heaven’s Book.
Growing up in the church, I heard people say, “You shouldn’t follow Jesus just to get out of hell”. I have come to believe that that is the best reason to come to Jesus! God certainly wants us to grow beyond that and love God for many other reasons.
If you are a Christ-follower, take a moment today to praise God for His Kingdom and for writing your name in Heaven.
Father, I praise You for Your Kingdom and Your plan for my salvation. Thank You for writing my name in Heaven. In Jesus’s Name I pray, amen.