"One Second From Now"

While driving down the highway recently, for no reason at all, a thought suddenly popped into my mind: “One second from now I could be dead!” I reasoned that something could happen to the car, I could have a wreck, or some other happening could take me from this life at any time, and one second from now, this life could be over. At this particular time, the thought seemed to be impressed upon me with a greater reality than ever before, and I began to think, “This is really true!” “One second from now my life could be over, and what then?” It is a sobering thing to stop and consider this fact.

One Second From Now, I could be in eternity — I could be living in the existence that has no end. That goes on forever and ever. And in that existence, I will be in a state that never can be changed. My eternal fate could be determined and sealed forever …. one second from now.

One Second From Now, all that I possess in this life could be nothing at all to me — Everything material, which seems so important now, could be left behind forever. The very things that motivate most of our lives, and the things we are most concerned about, will have no importance whatsoever. Everything I possess in this life, except my soul, could belong to someone else …. one second from now.

One Second From Now, I could be seeing my Lord face to face — This is the most glorious thought! Paul says, “Absent in the body, present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8). If I should die, my first awareness will be that being present with Jesus Christ. In Paradise I will be with the Lord, even as He promised the thief on the cross (Luke 23:43). Yes, I could be with Jesus my Lord …. one second from now.

One Second From Now, I could be in eternal torment — The Christian knows at death he will be able to see Christ and begin an eternal existence with Him. But to those out of Christ, death will place them in the torments of hades (Luke 16:22-24). They too will begin an eternal existence, but it will be an existence that brings eternal torment and travail. At the judgment day, they will be cast into the final abode of hell (Revelation 20:11-15; cf. Matthew 25:31-46). To those out of Christ, death will bring eternal torment, and it could all begin …. one second from now.

It is indeed sobering to think what could be true of our existence one second from now, if we should pass from this life. Yet, is it not true that any or all of us could be dead one second from now? Life is uncertain to all (Hebrews 9:27).”For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away” (James 4:14). Where will you be one second from now? —Walter Swain

Mike Riley, Gospel Snippets


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