Living with Eternal Perspective

Psalm 90, the only psalm attributed to Moses, was likely written near the end of the Israelites’ 40-year journey through the wilderness. The Israelites clearly weren’t living the lives they’d expected. Though they were no longer slaves, they did not leave captivity for lives of ease and abundance. Who would be better to speak on living with an eternal perspective than those who were constantly asked by God to delay their worldly gratification? A study of Psalm 90 offers insight into living with an eternal perspective, a mindset that remains as challenging today as it was when the Israelites wandered the desert. 

Why Is It Difficult to Live with an Eternal Perspective?

Living with an eternal perspective means prioritizing eternal truths over immediate, worldly concerns. We live in a place and time that makes this mindset very difficult. Consider the following factors: 

Immediate Gratification: Our culture often emphasizes instant rewards and pleasures, making it hard to focus on lasting, eternal values.

Distractions: The modern world is filled with countless distractions, from technology to busy lifestyles, pulling our attention away from what truly matters.

Cultural Influences: Societal norms and values often conflict with eternal truths, pressuring us to conform rather than pursue an eternal mindset.

Faith and Trust: The biggest challenge is our lack of faith and trust in God. Without these, maintaining an eternal perspective is nearly impossible.

Appreciate God’s Greatness (Psalm 90:1-4)

To live with an eternal perspective, we must first appreciate God’s greatness. This involves understanding who God is, as revealed in the Bible, rather than through external sources like music or social media. Our theology should be shaped by His Word. God deserves our admiration because He is:

Our Refuge: God is our refuge, a place of safety and comfort (Revelation 21:3). He offers us a secure foundation in an uncertain world.

The Creator: God, as the Creator (Isaiah 40:28), defines all things. He is not a distant, indifferent deity; He is a caring Creator. This realization that we are not random accidents but part of His purposeful creation should bring us comfort.

Eternal: From everlasting to everlasting, God is eternal  (Isaiah 40:28). There has never been a time when He did not exist. He is self-sufficient and relies on no one.

Recognize the Brevity of Life (Psalm 90:5-11)

These verses point to two crucial aspects of human existence:

Our Mortality: Life is short, and none of us can escape death. This reality often catches us by surprise. Scriptures like Hebrews 9:27 and 1 Peter 1:24 emphasize the fleeting nature of life. It is brief and beautiful. In the grand scheme of eternity, when we’re dealing with a God who exists outside of time, life is but a breath.

Our Morality: The Israelites experienced God’s wrath due to their sins. God’s wrath is eternal, just as His nature is eternal. The first part of Romans 6:23 warns us that the wages of sin is death. We deserve God’s wrath because we are born at odds with Him. However, the second part of Romans 6:23 offers hope: God provides a way out through His Son Jesus. 

Make Every Day Count (Psalm 90:12-17)

Moses, nearing 120 years old when he wrote this psalm, had plenty of life experience out of which to impart sound wisdom. He urges us to make every day count. How can we do that?

Number Our Days: Psalm 90:12 teaches us to number our days so we may gain a heart of wisdom. Life is finite, and, once it’s over, we can’t get it back. We must use our time wisely.

Seek Satisfaction in the Lord: Verse 14 encourages us to seek satisfaction in God alone. Worldly pursuits can never fill the void in our hearts. True joy comes from the Lord.

Make God a Priority: Without prioritizing time with the Lord, we will fill our time with things which don’t satisfy. We might desire to do many good things, but what is the best thing we can do with our time? That is what should be our priority.

Lean on the Lord in All You Do: Verse 17 calls us to lean on God in all our work. Psalm 127:1 reminds us to do all work as if unto the Lord. Unless your work is dedicated to the Lord, it is in vain. As followers of Christ, we are called to be faithful in the ordinary and radical for Jesus.

What Does an Eternal Perspective Look Like?

If an eternal perspective matters, how can we shift our lives so that we live out this truth? Living with an eternal perspective transforms our lives in several ways:

Christ Becomes Your Focus: Jesus Christ becomes the center of your life, guiding all your actions and decisions, from the mundane to the major.

The Church Becomes Essential: A healthy community of believers plays a vital role in your spiritual growth and support. Surround yourself with those who will build you up (Hebrews 10:24). 

Your Occupation Becomes Worship: Your occupation does not matter. How you conduct yourself as you work does. Your work should be seen as an act of worship, done for God’s glory (Colossians 3:23). 

Evangelism Becomes Routine: Sharing the good news of Jesus Christ becomes a natural part of your daily life. 1 Peter 3:15 instructs us to always be prepared to share the reason for the hope we have in Him.

If we truly appreciate the salvation God has provided for us through His Son Jesus, that should radically transform how we view life and eternity. Life is short. We can let that get us down, or we can use the wisdom of God’s Word to bring our perspective into alignment with the Lord’s will. As C.T. Studd aptly put it, “Only one life, ’twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.” 

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