Of all the things that mankind seeks after, what would be the ultimate quest? Money? A good car? A big house? A home cinema with the ultimate sound system? A life partner, soulmate? Meaning and Purpose? A meaningful career? Fulfilling our dreams? Peace? Safety? Security? A complete bucket-list? What’s the one thing that we all seek, yet know we cannot attain?
Egyptian pharaohs, Persian and Macedonian Kings, Roman Emperors – all ancient god-like rulers – would seek immortality by achieving great deeds. And history has born this out, because we can still read about them all today; their names and deeds live on.
We all have favourite, famous people from history that we remember: from musicians and sports personalities to kings and people who made great reforms. But just like the immortal god-like rulers of antiquity – including every other religion’s founding figureheads – all of them have the same in common: they are all dead. Gone. Buried. Dust and ashes. No longer alive!
So what is the quest ‘mankind’ has still to conquer? We have achieved so much as humans, but are still really only scratching the surface of what’s possible in this amazing world. But we still haven’t figured out how to live forever? To live forever; to achieve immortality; to obtain eternal Life – or at least enough time to achieve all that we have set our hearts to do – this must be mankind’s greatest quest!
“God has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end.”Ecclesiastes 3:11
There is a philosophy out there in that the mind is the only thing that matters – keeping the mind alive in any form is okay, so long as we do. The body would become obsolete and we can live on in artificial intelligence. Well thats all well and good for the sci-fi movies, but in reality, what hope does that have to offer us? Who benefits from that?
There is a religious philosophy that says that when we die we all become part of some sort of one-ness, and many movies portray this as something wonderful – but again, what hope is there really in that for us, to be part of some mindless force!? What would be the point of us existing at all in the first place?
Is there a way which we can satisfy all that our hearts truly long for, where our lives have real meaning, hope and we have benefits for now and for all eternity? Is life, real life possible? Is what we all yearn for from deep down inside our lost, broken and fractured lives really possible?
“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”Luke 19:10
Well, there is one man in history, the man Jesus who lived the perfect life and provided the means to achieve this quest. In Him we can have life: abundant life now – and in its fullness forever. He did this by dealing with the two main sticking points: Sin and Death. Sin is the very thing that keeps us from being able to enter into Gods perfect presence and everlasting life; death was the consequence of that sin (all wrong must be punished right?). So what is the hope of Easter: it’s that Jesus died on the Cross to solve the problem of sin (literally taking it upon Himself instead of us), and He rose again to solve the problem of death (He literally defied death by coming back to life). Jesus solved our greatest quest by overcoming both of these problems on our behalf.
“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this comes the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many.”Hebrews 9:27-28
There is no real dispute among serious historians about the validity of the claim that Jesus rose from the dead. The only real dispute is whether you believe that it is sufficient to solve the quest for life or not (Jesus did raise people from the dead, and they would go on to die again, but Jesus rose and stayed alive and is alive still today). If Jesus is who he says He is (ie; the Son of God) and rose from the grave (the resurrection), His claim that He came to take away the sin of the world must be true too. If all this is true then we must do something about these claims. If by faith we believe He has solved the problem of our sin and if by faith we believe He has solved our quest for eternal life, and you believe this, you will inherit what should have always been ours – eternal life. But, first we must admit that we are sinners, agree to turn from our sin and ask by faith that Jesus forgive us.
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father [in heaven] but through Me.”John 14:6
So while we are filling our lives with stuff, trying to fulfil our desires and enjoying these temporary distractions, eternal life – as opposed to eternal death – is slipping us by every day. We all know, if we search our hearts, how unfulfilling all these distractions are. Our greatest quest is for so much more – something we desire but can’t quite grasp – life itself. If we could truly grasp it, it would be ours forever, even beyond death.