For the audio Podcast of this and every episode, find us on Breaker, Google Podcasts, Overcast, Pocket Casts, RadioPublic, Spotify or HERE
If you’d like to join us in our journey reading all the way through the Bible this year, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’ll be glad to email back a copy of the reading plan we are using.
Yesterday being a holiday, there was no podcast. And so our reading list covers 2 days worth: Philemon 23–Hebrews 2:4; Psalm 119:89–96; Ecclesiastes 5–11:10; Luke 14:25–15:10; Proverbs 13–14.
One dictionary defines axioms as statements or propositions which are regarded as established, accepted or self-evidently true. Saying something like the sun rises in the east and sets in the west is – axiomatic. It doesn’t need proving. It is self-evident.
The framers of the Declaration of Independence wrote axiomatically when they began the 2nd paragraph with: “We hold these truths to be self-evident.” That all men are created equal and have certain rights. They believed that statement didn’t need proving, it was as plain as day to everyone.
The Bible is full of such axioms. It begins with one – perhaps the fountainhead of all axioms: “In the beginning, God created the Heavens and the Earth.” It is so self-evident, the Bible never wastes a single letter on trying to prove it. And in Ecclesiastes 8:8, we encounter 3 axioms. 3 we do well to grasp and take to heart. For they help us understand and live in reality, as God knows it. Especially for the Christian.
I’m Reid Ferguson; you’re listening to Through the Word in 2020.
Axiom #1 from from Ecclesiastes 8:8 reads: “No man has power to retain the spirit, or power over the day of death.”
Man’s quest for immortality is a fool’s errand. Looking for serums, treatments and technologies to try and cheat death is a multi-billion dollar pipe dream. As Hebrews 9:27 reminds us “It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment.”
We cannot escape it. Death will come to every one of us until Christ returns. There are no exceptions. Cryogenics, hyperbaric oxygen chambers, cloning and all other such methods will not take away the very unavoidable reality that each of us dies because of the sin we share with Adam; and each and every one of us will have to stand before the judgment bar of God to give an account of ourselves on the last day.
Only for those in Christ are the terrors of death and judgment removed. For when by faith His righteousness is put on our account, even as our sin was placed upon Him on the Cross – death for the Believer becomes the an entrance to our everlasting reward, and His righteousness the basis upon our acceptance in the presence of the Living God.
That too is axiomatic. Or at least it should be.
Axiom #2: “There is no discharge from war.”
The Christian life is a battle, from the moment we are born again until the day we see Him face to face. We must be engaged in resisting the Devil’s lies, the World’s allurements to make power, possessions and pleasure the end-all, and dying to the desires of indwelling sin. There is no peace treaty to be made with any of these. There is no discharge, no being excused from this relentless battle.
Do not be thrown by that reality, nor overwhelmed by it. He has provided all we need to keep engaged up until the final victorious moment. And engaged we WILL be no matter what. Don’t imagine that war will end in this life or you will begin to grow weary in an unreal expectation.
Axiom #3: “Nor will wickedness deliver those who are given to it.”
No sin, no matter how pleasurable, how seemingly beneficial at the moment, no matter how seemingly valuable is worth it or actually provides freedom. Only slavery. No sin lived in, excused, tolerated or caved into is freeing. It will only find us damned.
We cannot cheat death or judgment. We cannot stop fighting sin. No sin will ever pay off the way it lies to us it will.
This is why we need a Redeemer.
This is why we need the saving work of Jesus Christ.
God willing Beloved, we’ll be back tomorrow.