A few days ago I posted a question on facebook and twitter; “Input wanted… For all who believe in the age to come or an afterlife: What do you think will keep me/us from destroying it?”.
In other words, Given the way we as people created by God with the freedom to choose how we will interact and engage with each other and creation in this time have managed to make such a mess of many things and at the same time have managed to work with our Creator and do some beautiful things… What will govern us in the age to come/eternity/afterlife?
I think I will take a shot at answering my own question:
Our hope in the age to come or the afterlife or eternity (although we are living in eternity now) will be the same as our hope now.
Jesus Christ now reigns as King in every realm that exists. It is hard to recognize it in the world we walk around in every day and yet he demonstrated in his way of life, his teachings, his victory over the dominion of darkness on the cross and his empty grave that God’s kingdom is actually in control and much more involved in our lives than we would imagine.
The key in these times is for those of us who make up the Church to follow him in this same journey. The Church is present in the world to testify that Jesus actually is King of all. The Holy Spirit is here with us affirming and empowering the presence of His sovereign authority over creation through us. This was always God’s plan and always will be.
The challenge for us though is to grapple with how that authority is exercised. In fact we will always face that same challenge for all eternity. It is a kingdom of love and since God is love, there is no other law or system that can or should govern us.
In the gospel of Matthew beginning in chapter 5, Jesus explains what will govern us and all of creation now and forever. So, it seems to me that a big part of understanding what will rescue us from repeating the disobedience, sin and destruction of this life in the age to come is found in living in the authority of His kingdom of love now.