– Adrian Rogers
As if Just Crucified
The first century church lived this way. They lived as if Jesus had just died yesterday, and, relatively speaking, He did. How did they live in such a way as if Christ died yesterday? The apostles kept reminding them that they murdered the Author of Life (Acts 3:15), and their conclusion was “… turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord” (Acts 3:19). That’s the way we ought to be living, just as the 1st century church did, as if Jesus had just died yesterday.
As if Just Resurrected
Once again we turn to the 1st century church because news of the resurrection was still fresh in their minds. In fact, Paul testified that Christ “… appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep” (1 Cor. 15:6). It was easy for the first century church to live as if Christ had just been raised from the dead because there were so many eyewitnesses still alive. But Jesus reminded Thomas, who doubted, and He reminds us in the 21st century, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29b). That would be you and I who have believed without ever seeing Him, so we should live as if He just rose this morning from the grave.
As if Returning Today
We ought to be living life as if He is coming back today because He might! The Apostle John gave us a very serious verse to ponder when he wrote, “And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming” (1 John 2:28). Why would John write such a thing? Because he knew human nature and our tendency to slack off in the Christian faith. That’s why Jesus warned in Matthew 24:36, “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come” (Matt. 24:42). “But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, ‘My master is staying away a long time,’ and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards. The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of. He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” (Matt. 24:48-51). Therefore, we must live as if He’s coming back today!
Sadly, many put off their decision to trust in Christ and are “on the fence,” but the fence and all who sit on it and on the other side will be cast into the lake of fire (Rev. 21:8), so truly we must be witnessing to the lost before it is too late (Rev. 20:12-15). Therefore, we “ought to be living as if Jesus died yesterday, rose this morning, and is coming back this afternoon” because He might!