In View of Godís Glory     2 Corinthians 5:1-10

 

One of my favorite things to observe is to watch my 3 year old daughter Penelope change her sweatshirt.

 

Because as she is pulling it off over her head, she will pause when the sweatshirt is over her eyes and she will say, "You can't see me."

 

And I will say, "Penelope, I can see you, but you can't see me because of your sweatshirt.

 

Then Penelope will adamantly respond, "No, you can't see me."

 

Her 3 year old mind has not yet grasped that people can see her eventhough she can't see them.  It's a matter of perspective.

 

Because from her perspective, she can't see, therefore, she assumes others can't see her.

 

Friends, there are many people who say, "I donít believe in a heaven or hell because I can't see it or I don't believe in God because I can't touch him or hear him.

 

But do you only think that things exist because you can observe them with your 5 senses.  That is very 3 year old like.

 

Friends, can you see oxygen?  Can you feel oxygen?  Obviously not, but you are breathing, aren't you?

 

There are many things that are beyond our five senses, but are certainly there helping us to live, especially the Lord.

 

Just because you can't physically see God right now, it doesn't mean that He can't see you.

 

Today's passage teaches us to take a step back and stop trying to see things from only our limited perspective, but to see things in view of God's eternal glory.

 

Look with me at the beginning of the passage, "Now we know that if the earthly tentÖ"

 

This first section is showing us that this life is not all there is.  What you see right now is temporary and will on that Last Great Day be transformed.

 

The suffering that you experience, the injustice that you observe will all be addressed by the Lord.  He will right every wrong and wipe away every tear.

 

However, if you believe that this life is all there is, then you will be discouraged and frustrated.

 

A couple of months ago I found out that a friend of mine from my home church had a heart attack and passed away.  He was only 42 years old and left behind his wife and 3 small children. 

If you donít believe in eternal life, you will be filled with angst and disappointment and a great sense that life is not the way itís supposed to be.

 

However, if you look at life, even a shortened life like my friend David, you know that every believer has purpose and we will see each other again for all of eternity.

 

We were made for God's glory and to live for Him.

 

The first point of this first paragraph is "This world is NOT all there is, therefore, STOP acting like this world is all there is."

 

We spend most of our time in our culture pursuing temporal things that we think will bring us happiness, money, nice cars, fancy clothes, a successful career, but what happens when you get what you want?  You want more

 

This world is not all there is, therefore, stop acting like this world is all there is.

 

For those of you who watch American football, know that all the players wear the #21 on the back of their helmets.  It's because 2 months ago a 24 year old Washington Redskins football player, Sean Taylor, was shot and killed in his home in Miami by a burglar. 

 

It was amazing because right after he passed away, all of his teammates said that Sean's death put things into perspective.  That football is just a game, the millions of dollars that they make, the fancy cars they drive donít seem that important any more.

 

Because life is more than the sum of your possessions and accomplishments.

Life is knowing the Lord Jesus Christ and seeking His glory in your life and you will make an eternal impact into many people's life.

 

For those of you who like going to the beach in the summer time, how many of you enjoy making sand castles with your children.  However, it would be foolish for you to build a huge sand castle and think you will be moving your family to the shore.

 

It's because sand castles are not made to last, but some of you are making sand castles on this earth and think you'll be here for a long time.  However, what is your life 30, 40, 50 more years on this earth in the light of eternity. 

 

Stop living for your glory and start living for His eternal glory in your life.

 

Look with me at v.5 "Now it is God who made us for this very purposeÖ"

 

The Lord made you for a purpose: to love Him and to live with his eternal glory in view

Stop trying to live your life pleasing other people to gain their approval because it will make you miserable, to talk a certain way, to dress a certain way, it feels like death.

 

That's way the end of verse 4 says that "what is mortal or death will be swallowed up by life." 

 

First point: This life is NOT all there is, therefore, STOP acting like it is

Second point: This life is NOT all there is, therefore, start living the eternal life that God wants you to live right now.

 

Eternal life does not begin the moment a Christian dies and goes to heaven.

 

Eternal life, eternal purpose, eternal perspective begins a person puts their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and asks Him to swallow up our little insignificant life with His Divine glorious life

 

Friends, have you recently seen someone who has been touched by God.  Their lives are transformed.  They used to live a self-centered life.  It was all about them, but now they live for the Lord Jesus Christ and want to love and help other people. 

 

Do you know people like that?  Some of you are wondering that used to be me, what happened?  You lost sight of Godís glory and eternal purpose.  You are living the opposite of verse 7 "We live by faith, not by sight." 

 

Many church goers still live only by what they see and they easily lose view of the Lord

 

We have to remind ourselves that this life is not all there is and we need to look again to the cross of Jesus Christ, where he literally and spiritually swallowed up our death with His life and gave to us eternal life for all those who believe in Him.

 

Brothers and sisters, your value does not come from how much money you have in the bank, your worthiness does not come from what wonderful colleges your children go to, your righteousness comes from the Lord Jesus Christ alone.

 

When you make the Lord Jesus your rock, your foundation, your value, He will enable you to say NO to a promotion so that you can spend time with your family and serve others.  You can say I'll drive my current car for another 2 years so that I can support another missionary.

 

This life is not all there is, therefore, start living with Christís eternal glory in mind.

 

Look with me at verses 9-10 "So we make it our goal to please him, whetherÖ"

 

As believers, our lives are no longer our own.  We belong to the Lord Jesus.  Therefore, we no longer live our ourselves, but for Him who died and rose again for us.

 

It is only by loving and serving others as the Lord did for us will we experience more of His love, His presence, and His glory in our lives.