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Life is short. Then you die.

The Bible is clear about this.

“Behold, you have made my days a few handbreadths, and my lifetime is as nothing before you. Surely all mankind stands as a mere breath! Selah” (Psalm 39:5).1

The word “selah” is added so the reader will pause and think about what was just written.

Life is short. Yes, that means you, mate.

And me.

However, life is also eternal. This is clear in Scripture, too.

“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life” (1 John 5:13).

These two contrasting perspectives—eternity and brevity—are comforting when we are suffering.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God” (Romans 8:18–19).

We will all suffer. But it will end. After a seemingly long but actually short time, Christians will be living in a heavenly kingdom forever.

These two contrasting perspectives are also comforting when we witness and experience injustice.

“Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord’” (Romans 12:19).

Justice may not be done here on earth, but someday it will come; and that judgment will be eternal.

We live brief lives, but the importance of our actions here on earth is huge. A great deal can happen in a very short span. Even the secular world acknowledges this. A song written almost ninety years ago by the Mexican songwriter Maria Grever (Stanley Adams wrote the English lyrics), is about falling in love. But it has the ring of truth about it. This is the first stanza:

“What a difference a day makes.

Twenty-four little hours

Brought the sun and the flowers

Where there used to be rain.”

Our lives are fleeting but full to the brim of consequence. We can decide if we want an eternal life where we will be comforted after a life of suffering, where we will have justice after experiencing injustice. No minute in our lives is as significant as the one when we decide to come to Jesus. As far as eternity is concerned, that choice will be made in the blink of an eye. As far as eternity is concerned, the outcome is forever.

What a difference a day makes. Twenty-four little hours.

Life is hard.

Life is short.

Then you die.


Make the right choice. Time is short.

1All Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

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