|Author||Luciano Barreto Nogueira de Moura|
|Number of Pages||1|
During the first full week of January since 1967, Seventh Day Baptists around the world have united in prayer by sharing in meditations centered on a theme chosen by the author of the SDB Week of Prayer booklet. This year’s theme is “Eternal Life Is...,” authored by the President of the World Federation, Pastor Luciano Barreto Nogueira de Moura. As we did last year for the first time, we are encouraging prayers each day of the week for all countries in the world where Seventh Day Baptists exist; not just the countries which are members of the World Federation.
Throughout our lives, we face situations that lead us to reflect on how we are living and, in more difficult times, about the brevity of our lives. How old will we be until “that day”? And until then, how will we live? These questions always come back to our minds. We often face the two thoughts summarized in the following statement: Life is short and I cannot waste it!
We fight the clock. The world often imposes on us a busy, busy life, with no time for family, friends, in short, to enjoy the moments of communion better. The difficulty around us is that we know our days are numbered! This reality is normal for all people around the world. Even people who live in remote and rural communities face, in one way or another, the question of the brevity of life.
True, life is short and it seems like the days are shorter too. Tasks pile up, we often procrastinate, miss priorities, and face a lot of anxiety and stress. When we tell this to some friends, the answer is unanimous: this is normal, the world is like this! People are resigned to being slaves to circumstances. Still others live in more than slavery because of things, titles and power. The world loses every day the prospect of an abundant and full life.
In this sense, God’s Word is revolutionary and goes against all common sense. The message of Scripture, and especially God’s plan to give eternal life to everyone who is in Christ, puts the “normalcy” of the world upside down. “Eternal life” - What is the meaning of this for my life here and now? What is the significance of this if we think that life does not end in the grave? These are questions that someone may ask. The truth expressed in the revelation of God in His Word is categorical and definitive: God is the giver of eternal life, which exists only in Christ Jesus, and everyone who belongs to Christ enters eternal life, enjoying even at that moment of life, all the effect of this grace and deliverance.
We are identified with Christ in His death and resurrection, for He has already conquered death, and with this, has secured for us eternal life in Him, as it is written:
O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting? The sting of death is sin; and the power of sin is the law: but thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Eternal life is a gift from God, a promise already fulfilled in Christ Jesus and guaranteed by the Lord! Please note that the first letter of the first word of each day’s meditation, forms an acrostic for the word ETERNAL.