Eternal Hope Heritage
- BC Lions lost 5 games in a row.
o Something had to change.
o something did change.
- Carla has tried to bake bread
o yeast past “best before”
o Something had to change
- getting into heaven?
o cannot possibly get there?
o Something has got to change.
o spend eternity in heaven with a pure, perfect and holy God, something is going to have to change.
o not fit for heaven. Something has to change.
- I Corinthians 15:50-58.
I. The Necessity of Change
- verse 50 - “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God.”
o something that is impossible.
o things that are not possible, they cannot happen.
o Without a key, you cannot go into a locked room.
o Without authorization you cannot cross an international border.
o Without the things mentioned in this passage it is impossible to enter into heaven.
- Verse 53 à divine necessity.
o “must” appears twice
o Certain things must happen before it is possible for any human being to be with God.
- Why is it impossible?
- Why must these things happen before we can get into heaven?
o we are flesh and blood.
§ subject to death.
§ impossible for us to get into heaven.
§ Heaven is a place for those things that are eternal.
§ Anything that is subject to death cannot be in heaven.
§ no death in heaven
§ as long as we are subject to death, we are subject to something that will not be in heaven.
§ Something has got to change.
§ We need to become creatures of eternity.
o we are perishable.
§ Everything on earth eventually is destroyed.
§ 70 years or 80 if we are strong.
§ people are living longer
§ perhaps we would all now be considered middle age.
§ dying is a sentence that God has placed
§ Heaven is a place where nothing dies.
· no perishing,
· no rotting,
· nothing that will disappear in heaven.
· Heaven is an eternal place and in order for us to be in heaven, we need to change so that we too are eternal.
o we are corruptible.
§ similar to perishable,
§ moral overtones
§ Our bodies become corrupted,
§ our lives become corrupted
§ our hearts also become corrupted.
§ In heaven, there is nothing that is corrupted.
§ Nothing changes into something worse.
§ Nothing impure or immoral or unclean is in heaven.
§ something must change.
- I Corinthians 15 is that that change is going to take place.
o Flesh and blood à eternal à no longer be subject to death.
o perishable àimperishable à no longer become broken and destroyed.
o corruptible à incorruptible à no longer tend towards what is worse.
- hope of all who belong to Christ.
- without Christ we have no hope.
- Christ, the perfect Son of God
o came to earth in order to die on the cross
o raised from the dead, as a human being,
o change the hearts of all who believe in Him
o give them eternal life.
- God has made it possible for us to enter the kingdom of heaven pure, perfect, imperishable, incorruptible and immortal.
- “…the absolute necessity of transformation in order to enter the heavenly mode of existence.”
- hope of change is a wonderful word of encouragement
- all the broken, destroying, perishable things which we accept as normal on this earth will not exist in heaven.
II. The Means of Change
- How does that change happen?
- when we die.
- Death is looked at by people on earth as an ending.
o It is an ending.
o end of life on this earth.
o end of relationships
o we remember what was because it is over.
o We say goodbye to the person who has passed away because we will not see them any more on earth.
o We shed tears because we have lost someone we loved.
o an enemy
o a reminder of the corruption and of the fact that we are mortal and perishable.
- But in another sense, death is not an ending,
o the means of change by which we will be able to enter into heaven.
o not death itself that is the means of change,
o death is only the necessary first step
o resurrection which is the actual step which brings about the change.
o without death, resurrection does not happen,
o important step towards life which is eternal.
o “the dead in Christ will be raised imperishable.”
o “in Christ”
o death becomes the door by which they will be changed through the resurrection into those who will inherit eternal life.
- not the only way
o “we will not all sleep.”
o some, perhaps even some of us here, who will not have to die.
o Those who are alive when Jesus comes
o will still be changed,
o may escape death, but they will not escape being changed.
o We will all be changed.
- The hope of resurrection and change is a wonderful encouragement
o Death is always an enemy,
o one step in the necessary process of change
o hope for the day when death, corruption and perishing will no longer happen because we will be in heaven.
III. The Time of Change
- When will all this happen and what will it be like at that time?
- “at the last trumpet.”
o What is the purpose of the trumpet?
o set an alarm so that I will not sleep too long.
§ “Sleep is over, now it is time to get up and get to work.”
o trumpet call
§ “the day is here.”
§ day of earth life is over.
§ day in which the world is ruled by death and corruption is over.
§ day of God’s eternal reign has come.
§ then those who have experienced step one of the change will be raised from the dead and they will experience the completion of the change
§ all those who are still alive at that time will also immediately experience the same change.
- We have been waiting for the sale of our house.
o when the phone rings,
o a great desire to hear that call when it comes.
o Are we waiting for the sound of the trumpet with similar intensity?
o Are we longing for the day of the trumpet call of God?
o Not only so that we will avoid death, but much more so that everything will be changed so that we can go to heaven and spend eternity with God.
- railway crossing
o look to see, when is the end of the train coming?
o trumpet call à cannot do that.
o “…in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye.”
- When we first applied for our passports waiting in line a long time.
o there with young children
o when the trumpet sounds.
o change very quickly.
o be ready
- when I do a funeral,
o read these words at the interment service.
o never a good time to explain them
o how important and profound they are.
- remind us of the great hope we have.
o God has provided for the change necessary for us to go into heaven.
o as we bury someone, we know that have taken step one of the change
- challenge us to make sure that we are ready
- bless us with the hope that heaven will not be like life here.
o no corruption and nothing will ever perish in heaven.
- As we struggle through life, may these words encourage us with hope!
- I Corinthians 11:26 à “until the Lord comes.”
- Lord’s Supper is an important occasion
o reminded of the goodness of God
o provided salvation through the death of Christ on the cross and through His resurrection.
o keep reminding ourselves of this event until He comes.
o we have spoken about the day of His coming
o appropriate for us to remind each other of the foundation which will allow us to look forward to the day when the trumpet will sound.
Read I Corinthians 11:23-26