ThoughtShades FrameWork

Essays, Themes, Opinions

Constructs, Practical Ideas, Applications

Poetry, Impression Writing

Sermons, Devotions

Personal Revelations, Illustrations

Viewpoint: Politics, Contemporary Issues, Editorials


Choice Offerings by Others

Powered by Squarespace
« The Silhouette Syndrome | Main | To Be Like Jesus »

Hypothetically Speaking

john lennon.jpg“But if there be no resurrection of the dead…” 1 Corinthians 15:13

“What if there were no hypothetical questions?” I laughed at this absurd query recently posed to me. Later, it started me thinking. The scriptures contain many questions like these to provoke us to serious thought. They sharpen our understanding of truth and help us appreciate what we have. In the fall of 1971, John Lennon’s song, Imagine, hit the charts. He challenged fans with,

Imagine there’s no heaven,

It’s easy if you try;

No hell below us

Above us only sky.”

Let’s take up Lennon’s invitation and see where it would lead.

Imagine that there were no Bible. We would not know why we exist and how we got here. We would not know about God or who he was. We would not understand the true history of man. We would not know about the angels, Satan, the supernatural. We would not know about the favor of God or the deception of sin. We would not have “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” We would not “understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” No patriarchs, no prophets, promises, no psalms, no proverbs, no law, no light, no truth.

Imagine that there were no ten commandments. We would be worshipping Baal-Peor, Ashtoreth, Chemosh, Amenotep, Zeus, Aphrodite, Vulcan or Jupiter. Instead of feeling the presence of the true God, we would be mutilating our bodies, burning incense or throwing our babies into the fire. Churches would be pagan temples filled with figurines of men, women, beasts, and grotesque wood, stone, gold and silver shapes. High priests would belch out profanity. The Lord’s Day would be totally secular. Children would disrespect their parents. Wanton killing would invite neither punishment nor protection. Marriage would be meaningless. We would guard our possessions behind barred windows. Lies and deceptions, greed and envy would eat out our hearts like cancerous tumors.

Imagine that there were no Calvary . Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission. No remission! Sinners would pound the altars in vain. Unrequited tears would flow down their cheeks. The crushing weight of cruel sin would never be lifted. Without Calvary …the woman at the well keeps her shame; the demonic roams the tombs; prostitution enslaves Mary Magdalene; leprous hands rot away; the diseased woman withers away; the widow of Nain pines away. Without Calvary , Peter, James and John go back to their nets; Paul becomes a radical zealot for some lost cause; a condemned world continues to groan. Think of it! The inexorable advance of the slime and corruption of sin never stops. Not one sin forgiven! Not one tear wiped away. Not one broken heart mended. No grace, no mercy, no love, no praise, no peace, no joy ever lifts the human spirit.

Imagine that there was no resurrection. “But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:13-14. Everything rests on this answer. No resurrection means no reason for preaching. All teaching stops because the resurrection lies at the heart of our faith. Without it, our faith is foolishness—-the faith that brought us through our trials, the faith that sustains us in our temptations, the faith which brings God’s grace into our lives—-all this would be worthless.

After the cross, the disciples left a limp, lifeless body. A huge stone blocked the entry to the corpse, Roman soldiers kept the disciples away, mourners left the cemetery sobbing. But, this is where vain imagination meets the power of God’s reality! Jesus rose! In an instant, everything changed. The bonds of sin were broken. The finality of death was decimated. Now, there is hope where there was despair, there is peace where there was conflict and there life where there was death. In 1999, Bart Millard’s I Can Only Imagine rose to the #1 gospel song in America .

I can only imagine what it will be like when I walk by Your side;

I can only imagine what my eyes will see when Your face is before me;

I can only imagine;

Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel?

Will I dance for You, Jesus or in awe of You be still?

Will I stand in Your presence or to my knees will I fall?

Will I sing hallelujah? Will I be able to speak at all?

I can only imagine. I can only imagine.”

No, Lennon, I can’t, and I won’t imagine there’s no heaven. Instead, I’m standing beside the N. A. Urshans, S. W. Chambers and Imogene Kilgores imagining what it will be like…and looking for the day I’m there. I’m not going to imagine what it would be like if it never happened…I am going to imagine what it will be like when it does happen!

With truth, there are no hypotheticals. You may waste your time imagining that truth is not true if you like, but, that’s all it is—-imagination. Not I. I choose to revel in the reality of my faith!

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>