Q. I have been reading from books by (a 19th Century author). His main line of thought is that often we are like the nation of Israel. We are saved but through lack of faith and sin we don’t enter in to the promised life. He ‘suggests’ that because we don’t pay the price (taking up the cross and denying our-self) for the pearl of great price (close union and fellowship with God in power over sin) we continue to wander in the desert of carnal christian life.
In the past week or so It seems the LORD is taking me out of the desert. That part is great, but the consequences of my past sins are still here. I am in debt and estranged from family because of lack of love on my part and rebellion on the part of ‘others’. I guess I will now reap what I sowed. If our time left on earth is as short as you suggest the scripture says (and so It appears to me too), then how do I make best use of my time?
A. The interpretation of the pearl of great price (Matt. 13:45-46) you gave is flawed. The merchant who gave everything he had for the pearl represents the Lord, and the pearl he purchased is the Church. It cost Him everything to provide you a place in the Kingdom free of charge.
Yes, there are earthly consequences for our sins, but we often make things worse for ourselves due to our guilt. Where the Lord is concerned, once we’ve confessed we’re forgiven and it’s like they never happened (1 John 1:9). This is the major difference between Israel and the Church. For them, any interruption of the flow of blessings they suffered was due to their lack of obedience. For us it’s due to our lack of faith in His forgiveness.
The best use of your time would be learning to understand that difference and applying it in your life. As you do you’ll notice Him paying off your debts and bringing reconciliation to your relationships. The little time we have left could turn out to be the best of your earthly life.