Okay . . . I know this whole question of "what has God promised us in this life?" is fraught with problems. It's a question that's got heresy on both sides. So, let me make a few things clear: I am not advocating a "name it and claim it" theology, whereby we can have anything and everything we want if we just claim it in Jesus' name. After all, Jesus said, "In this world you will have trouble" (John 16:33).

Nor am I advocating a "prosperity" doctrine that claims God wants everyone to be rich and healthy. "The poor you will always have with you" (Matt. 26:11).

What I am saying is that Christ does not put his offer of Life to us totally in the future. That's the other mistake. "'I tell you the truth,' Jesus said to them, 'no one who has left home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life'" (Luke 18:29-30, emphasis added).

Jesus doesn't locate his offer to us only in some distant future, after we've slogged our way through our days here on earth. He talks about a life available to us in this age. So does Paul: "Godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" (1 Tim. 4:8, emphasis added).

There is a Life available to us now. Let's find it.

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