Is there more to reality than the world than we see? An attempt to explain the experience of living in this world by only what we see and sense will ultimately fail. The Bible makes it clear that not only is there an alternate invisible reality, but that this reality is the origin of and the basis for all we see.
By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. (Hebrews 11:3)
Any physical, finite object, including the world we live in has to have an origin. That this origin was not the physical, but the spiritual or the invisible is made clear from this verse. Genesis makes it further clear that God spoke this world into existence, meaning his word, which is invisible, has the capability to create a physical world. While this is not evident from current logical thinking, it is truly amazing to think of the fact that a physical reality can come into being and be held together by something invisible.
The word of God goes further and exhorts us to utilize 3 elements that help connect man, living in this physical world to the superior invisible alternate reality.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. (1 Corinthians 13:13)
Faith is the element that helps man to go beyond what is evident and what is expected. Faith helps man not to be limited by his senses. While logic did not allow Jesus’ disciples to think that the vast crowd exceeding 5000 would be fed by 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish, faith allowed Jesus to connect to the spiritual world and utilize the same fish and bread to feed the crowd and still have leftovers. In some way, the bread and the fish multiplied to be sufficient and all we can say is that faith worked the spiritual realm to make that possible. While experiencing life in this world, we have two options- either to be limited by what we sense, what we know and what is current or to go beyond any of these and expect more. Faith alone makes the latter possible.
Hope is the element that places the value of the eternal far beyond anything we experience here on earth. You again have two choices- either to focus on the things here on earth, to value them and to chase after them; or to focus on the life to come and make all decisions here on earth accordingly. A person who loves God alone can find this element attractive. Such a person alone can truly rebut the advances of the materialistic and instead treasure that which is to come. For the majority of people on earth however, the treasures of this earth are what drive them and it is those treasures that are valued.
Love is the element that captures the very essence of God and His nature. The supreme theme running through the spiritual universe would be love, because it is the character of God. Love models the example of Christ- that of placing the interests of the other before oneself. Here again man has two choices- to love self and live for self or to love God and consistently place the interests of God and others before his own.
It is a saving faith in Christ that switches on the capacity for man to utilize these elements and experience this reality. And one who proceeds farthest in the spiritual realm is one who most utilizes these elements in his day-to-day life.
- SO CLOSE, YET SO FAR
- ANALYZING FEAR