Temporary is a word we use quite frequently to describe different things. But what does it really mean?
The dictionary defines temporary as: lasting, existing, serving, or effective for a time only; not permanent. The root of temporary is based upon the Latin word tempus, which means “time”.
For our purposes here, I would like to focus on the temporary nature of our earthly lives. Our earthly lives, as well as our bodies, are not permanent. This current life is effective for a time only.
This concept is one that we have a difficult time grasping. We measure time in seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years. And we base our lives upon that measurement.
For example, a working person has a schedule that they must keep. Or we may have appointments to keep as well. We spend our time worrying about being “on time” for our jobs and appointments.
What we should be doing is thinking about something eternal. That is to say, whether we will spend eternity with the Lord God, or in punishment.
Jesus Christ is the King of all kings, and Lord of all lords. To obtain the things that are eternal, we must focus on Him. Our first priority should be to follow Him. To do that, we must first have faith and trust in Him.
The only way we can spend eternity with the Lord God is through faith in Jesus Christ. The following verse confirms that:
“Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” John 14:6
By this point, you are probably wondering how we can know what is temporary, and what is eternal. The answers to those questions can be found in the Bible. The Bible contains the divinely inspired, inerrant Word of God. I will list a few Scripture passages below.
“A voice says, “Call out.”
Then he answered, “What shall I call out?”
All flesh is grass, and all its loveliness is like the flower of the field.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
When the breath of the Lord blows upon it;
Surely the people are grass.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
But the word of our God stands forever.” Isaiah 40:6-8
In this passage, we see the metaphor of grass being used to describe our fleshly bodies. They are dependent upon the breath of the Lord God. When we are born, the Lord God blows breath into our nostrils. And when we die He takes the breath from our nostrils. That is where the temporary ends and the eternal begins.
“Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.”
In this verse, Jesus tells His disciples of the temporary nature of the earth. And even of the current Heaven.
And, “You, Lord, in the beginning laid the foundation of the earth,
And the heavens are the works of Your hands;
They will perish, but You remain;
And they all will become old like a garment,
And like a mantle You will roll them up;
Like a garment they will also be changed.
But You are the same,
And Your years will not come to an end.” Hebrews 1:10-12
Here the Apostle Paul confirms the temporary nature of everything that the Lord God has created. He also confirms that the Lord God is not temporary.
“Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
In this passage Paul stresses the temporary nature of the flesh. But he goes on to give us hope and encouragement by telling us about things that are eternal.
“And His voice shook the earth then, but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth, but also the heaven.” This expression, “Yet once more,” denotes the removing of those things which can be shaken, as of created things, so that those things which cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:26-29
Paul really brings things to a close here. He grabs us by the collar and reminds us once more of the temporary things. And that once we have received that which is eternal, we should be grateful to God.
I would like to encourage you, dear reader, to set your thoughts upon those things which are eternal. And to remember that what we have now is only temporary. Our possessions, our earthly bodies, and our earthly lives will not last forever.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them in the space below. Thank you for reading. And may God bless you and your family.
The Steadfast Watchman