he Collegiate Letter   

The Collegiate Letter Doing Something Worthwhile

By Dave Breese

It is commonly agreed that the greatest source of satisfaction in life is the sense that we are making progress at doing something worthwhile. I hope that that is the case with you right now. But, of course, the problem is that life is not static; it is dynamic. Our impressions of many things are subject to alteration as we mature and our circumstances change. What seemed “worthwhile” last year or five years ago now has diminished in importance in favor of something else.

When we are students, grades and graduation are of supreme importance (along with infatuation, of course). Soon, however, successful involvement in society becomes the worthwhile thing. Yes, the dynamic nature of life forbids us to live with static thoughts and calcified, changeless ambitions. How easily the burning ambitions of yesterday become the stifled yawns of today. Expect it! Things change.

But herein lies another problem. If things change too much, or too often, then we become confused and unstable. Our Western culture is becoming that way. Politics and presidents come and go (taking their promises with them), the old department store closes, a favorite professor retires, homosexuals try to get “married” and everyone says, “What’s next?” The answer is both “many things” and “God only knows.”

God Knows!
But there is the great truth—God does know! He stands above the universe and presides over it while also involving Himself in it. He is the stable one, the same yesterday, today and forever. Therefore, we have the great answer to the question of “What shall be my life’s ambition?” What is the “possible goal” which I, by achieving it, may rightly call myself successful? This question becomes doubly important when we remember that most people in today’s world are succeeding beautifully in accomplishing things that simply do not matter, things that are not worth doing. What a sad denouement in life.

What then is worth doing? Well, of course, it has to do with God and His will. If God made the world (which He did), He must have a great plan (which He does) for you and me. Therefore, the only real success in life must come from knowing and then actually doing the will of Him who made you and me.

Now, I admit that this sounds “religious.” Religious means to most people “disconnected with life”—impractical, unearthly, ephemeral. The fact is that nothing could be more untrue. An instant after death, there is but one qquestion that matters. It is the question, “What have I done with Jesus Christ?” Suddenly, “the religious question” becomes all important and no other question is important at all.

The question of faith then is primary. Success then is to have this faith. It is faith—faith in Christ—that saves me. Faith also is the key to everything else in life—including the understanding of life itselff.

Made In His Image
This would be a very good time—both in our personal lives and also in our world—to face the all-important question, “What is man?” Really, there are but two possibilities. One is that man is the specific creation of God and made in the image of God. To be made in the divine image is to be something like God, resembling Him in the core of our being. Our thought processes and feelings resemble His. The Bible even says that God is “touched with the feeling of our infirmities.” We are the object of His very tender concern.

The other possibility as relates to the question, “What is man?” is an awful one. It is the notion that man is just another soulless creature of the animal kingdom, a creature of nature like the beast of the field. A pseudo-sophisticated way of presenting this is to insist that man is the product of an inchoate evolutionary process. In short, evolution teaches that man is an animal and that the differences between him and the beasts of the field are purely accidents.

This pitiful view is held by millions of thought leaders in our society, including professors, preachers, politicians, and students. One of the astonishing developments of the last century is how the views of Charles Darwin permeated our society and the minds of men. When Darwin wrote his book, The Origin of the Species, he began a revolution in the way man understands himself and his universe. Strangely, if you have read Darwin, you will remember that Darwin tells us nothing about origins and candidly admits that he himself does not know what a species really is. In fact, now that we have microbiology, we know that every individual member of the animal or vegetable world is different from every other individual.

A little thought also will point up the unanswerable questions that are put on the table because of the theory of evolution. Evolution says, “All is biological,” “All is physical,” “All is accidental.” If this were true, think of the impossibilities that we would face in our thinking today. We could not explain the answers to the questions of life. What is love? What is honor? What is bravery? What is good? What is bad? How do we know any of these things? The simple fact is that evolution denies the existence of all of these vital commodities of life. It insists on a behavioristic point of view in which the accidental chemistry of the brain produces all of reality.

If this be true, then nothing is right and nothing is wrong. The lion that eats the wildebeest is not doing something “wrong.” He is merely doing what comes naturally. By the same token—if evolution were true—the murderer, the thief, the rapist, the terrorist ought not to be criticized. He, being a member of the animal world, is simply also “doing what comes naturally.”

We instantly recognize this amoral point of view as being totally absurd. If nothing is finally true, then there sets in what we would call “epistemological anarchy” and the entire culture instantly turns into a home for the insane. Unless you can impute personality to chemistry, you have lost the world to insanity. No argument can be refuted by any other argument if all is chemistry.

But alas, these are the ideas that are taking over in our present age. Necessary ideas like “justice,” and “goodness” and even “purpose” cannot be defined if there is no objective, divine reality that presides above the universe. Government is ultimately impossible which is not based on the ultimate government of the God who made us in His image.

How different life is when we understand that. When we know that God is and we have become His children, then we have many things that human chemistry cannot produce. We have eternal salvation, the privilege of prayer, and the leadership of the Holy Spirit. We have ways of achieving excellence, and that which alone can help us to understand life. No wonder so many collegians of our time are wandering, leaderless, hoping against hope and asking such questions as, “Who am I?” “Why am I here?” “What is the final purpose of life?”

A Child of the King
Alas, we will never be able to call ourselves successful until we know the answer to these questions. Who am I? I am a child of the King. Why am I here? I am here to serve the Lord of the universe. What is the final purpose of life? It is to become what God wants me to be. This is destiny!

Relative to all of this, let’s remember that the universe is a kingdom. It is not a democracy, not a republic, not an evil dictatorship. That’s why the Apostle Paul said, “Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen” (I Tim. 1:17). Not to understand the nature of the universe in which we live is to forever misunderstand life. To realize that we are citizens of a great and eternal kingdom is to take a giant step toward intelligence and the understanding of reality. That is why success is to know and to do the will of the King of the universe. He created and sustains all things and nothing is important apart from His will.

One day the King will return. The Bible teaches that every person who has lived his life in this world will one day stand before the Lord of the universe. For the Christian, that evaluation time is described in the Bible, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he has done, whether it be good or bad” (II Cor. 5:10).

For the person who is not a Christian, his judgment is described in the Book of the Revelation, “And I saw a great white throne, and Him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them. And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life. . . And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” (Rev. 20:11,12-15).

We can, therefore, see that living our lives in this world is a very serious thing. We discover from the Bible that our faith and our conduct have eternal consequences.

Let’s be praying for one another and let’s be in touch. Be sure that you will be mentioned in our daily prayers. Keep us posted as to the good things that are happening in your direction.