A young man came to the dean of a renowned university, his face beaming with enthusiasm. He informed the old man that the long-cherished desire of his heart was at last fulfilled: He had entered law school and meant to spare no labor or expense in pursuing his studies. Thus he continued to talk for some time. When he paused, the old man, who had been listening to him with great patience, kindly replied, “Well, when you have finished your studies, what do you mean to do?”
“Take my doctor’s degree,” answered the youth.
“And then?” asked his venerable friend. “Then,” continued the youth, “I shall have a number of difficult cases to manage, and by my eloquence, learning, zeal, and acuteness, I’ll win a great reputation.”
“And then?” repeated the professor.
“And then,” replied the youth, “there can be no question but that I shall be elected to some high office in the state, and shall become rich.”
“And then,” continued the would-be lawyer, “I shall live comfortably and honorably in wealth and respect, and look forward to a quiet and happy old age.”
“And then,” repeated the old man again.
“And then,” said the youth, “and then—and then I shall die.”
Here his listener raised his voice, and again asked with solemnity and emphasis: “AND THEN?” The young man made no answer. He hung his head and walked thoughtfully away. He had not considered the most important thing of all—the eternal welfare of his never dying soul.
God’s Word, the Bible, tells us with divine certainty what lies beyond. You may get rid of the Bible; you may despise its warnings; you may reject the Savior of whom it speaks. It is in your power to burn this and every other such tract that comes into your possession. But consider the prospect before you! Your little day will soon be past. Your pleasures will have an end. Your occupations will be worthless to you in the solemn hour when your body is reduced to a few handfuls of dust.
Is there not a cause for this? Is it by mere accident that a creature with such powers and capacities should come to such an end? There is but one answer, listen!
“By one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin.” Romans 5:12
The fall of man is a fearful reality. “Sin” is not simply an ugly word in the Bible. It is a dark, foul reality, which blights the world by its presence. “Death is passed upon all men, for that all have sinned “You are implicated in this matter. Upon YOU the sentence of death has passed; and very soon it may be said of you—”He died.”
One second after your death it will be a matter of no consequence to you whether you die in a palace or in a cellar. But your whole eternity will hang upon the state in which you die.
There is no denying the fact that, “The wages of sin is death;” but it is equally true—“The gift of God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
Yea, God commends His love to us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died on the cross for us. Divine love would bless the sinner, but divine holiness would not make light of sin. The full penalty of guilt passed upon the sinless Substitute, the Lord Jesus Christ. He took our place in death and judgment that we might have life. The love of God—the work of Christ—urges you to turn to the Son of God whose words are, “He that heareth My Word, and believeth on Him that sent Me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24).