Jump Start # 2579
Hebrews 9:27 “And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this comes judgment.”
Sunday in worship, and one can be in worship and not in the church building, we were singing, “He leadeth me.” Great hymn. The third line begins, “And when my task on earth is done…” That’s a great line. It connects us to our verse today. There is a divine appointment God has made for us with death. Unless the Lord comes first, you won’t miss that appointment. You won’t be late for that one. You won’t get around that one. You won’t postpone that one. You won’t cancel that one. This is one appointment that we will keep.
This passage is talking about physical death. Biblically, we actually die twice. We died in sin spiritually and then we die physically. Spiritual death and physical death. But, we who believe, are born twice. We are born physically and we are born spiritually. Not everyone is born two times. Some remain dead spiritually.
Back to the hymn, and the line, “And when my task on earth is done.”
First, we are born for a purpose. We are made on purpose for a purpose. We are not just wandering around with nothing to do. There is a task. There is a task that we need to do. We need to be about it. Some never understand this. Some feel that their task in life is to make others miserable. They do a great job at that. Others feel like their task in life is simply to make themselves happy. They will do whatever it takes to get there. In Acts 13, Paul preaching, said, “For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation…” David got it. He understood his task on earth. His task was to serve the purpose of God in his own generation. David was a national war hero. There were songs about David. He was the king of the nation. Famous. Rich. Powerful. But he understood that his task was the purpose of God.
Generically, we all have the same task. That is to do the purpose of God. But, specifically, that task takes on different shapes and colors. We have those with five talents and those with two and one. The task for some may be encouraging and they do a great job of that. For others, it may be preaching. For some, it may be leading the people of God. Some tasks look grand and others may look rather simple. But they are all important. Raising those little ones at home to love the Lord and respect Him is very important. Sharing God’s word is important. Being a backbone of a congregation that is dependable, supportive, and helpful is very important. There is a task before us. More important than paying off your house, having a nice nest egg for retirement, is the purpose of God. Simple, common first century disciples, many of which never owned a home, were busy with the task of God.
Second, someday our tasks will be done. It will be done because we will be done. We are here for a period of time and that’s it. We have to get busy with the task of God. We spin too much time trying to get through school, get established, get things going, and by the time everything is lined up, we are about done. So, this tells us that the task of God can be worked on and fulfilled as we journey through life. It’s not a matter of waiting until I am finished with college. All around you are opportunities to teach, encourage and shed you light. Get about this task now. Then starting off in your career, there are so many things to learn. So much to do. The task of God is before you. Get about that. A young family, so much to do. Remember the task of God.
Years ago I was walking through a cemetery looking at the headstones, something I still like to do. On one it read, “He did it his way.” That made me think of a Sinatra song. It made me wonder if the guy was selfish and stubborn. All kinds of thoughts come to your mind, but one that wasn’t there was God’s way. It didn’t say, “He did it God’s way.” When our task on earth is done, will people be saying, “He did it his way”? When our task on earth is done, what will we have accomplished? All the stuff we’ve gathered remains for others. What matters is whether we walked by faith and if we were about our Father’s business. Someday our task here will be over. Will it be said that you did it well? Will it be said that you used your time wisely? Will it be said that you made a difference?
Finally, we still have today. We may not have tomorrow. What remains to be done? What tasks have you not tackled? Is there a conversation that you need to have with someone? When are you going to do it? Is there someone you need to apologize to? When are you going to do it? Is there someone that you need to forgive? When? What remains to be done? What’s on the spiritual bucket list?
When our tasks on earth is over, God will judge us. He will not ask us if we changed the oil in our cars every 3,000 miles. He will not care if you cleaned out your garage and have everything nicely organized. He will not care if you edged your yard or not. He will care about what bothered you so much. He will care about how serious you were about your faith. He will care about what tasks you pursued in life. How large was your heart? How much did you care? How often did you take things to God? How much did you read His word and follow it?
When our task on earth is done, we will realize what really mattered. We will know what was really important. We will understand what was important to God. The rich man in Luke 16 was a wealthy business man. He lived behind gates. He wore purple, the color of luxury. He ate well every day. When he died, none of those things mattered. He wanted to send word back to his five brothers. He knew that they were just like he was. The word he wanted to send wasn’t about business, finance or acquiring things. It was about their souls. There were headed to torment just like he did. They were engaged in the wrong tasks. It wasn’t about wealth, self or making a name. The business of life is to be engaged in God’s business. That is the task before us. The rich man missed it. His five brothers were on the path to missing it.
I wonder if we miss it, too. When our task here on earth is over…
Sure is something to think about.