Wherever it is and however you travel, whether by plane, train, bus or car, you’re one of over 120 million American adults who will be traveling this year. We all travel for various reasons, but all those trips have one thing in common, a final destination chosen by the traveler. Given the expense of gasoline and maintaining a car, it doesn’t make sense to drive around aimlessly without a place to go. And with all the hassles of public transportation, high ticket prices, lost luggage, security checks, delays and missed connections, it would be unthinkable to randomly select an arrival city. Whether traveling for business or pleasure, it’s the destination that is of the upmost important.
Yet, incredibly, millions of people are traveling without any thought about their final destination. They are traveling through life, everyone’s most important journey, from birth to the grave. Every individual life journey is different, but all of us share the same end – death. But is death our final destination? Some think so. But the Bible declares that there is life after death. In fact, God’s Eternal Word teaches us that, after death, everyone will arrive at one of two destinations. One of these destinations is desirable and one is not. Jesus once spoke of two men, a beggar and a rich man, who arrived at their final destinations. After death, the beggar was carried to a better place where Abraham was, but the rich man died and found himself in a place of suffering. “The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried, and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off…” (Luke 16:22-23).
How tragic it is that so many, like the rich man, live their lives without giving any thought to their final destination. How does a person get a ticket for transport to heaven? Obtaining a ticket is a matter of knowing the right person. Jesus said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the father except through me”. (John 14:6). Thus, a personal relationship with Jesus is required; only He can guarantee our final destination. Because of our sin, we cannot purchase a ticket to heaven. As a result of disobedience – what the Bible calls sin – all human beings are under the sentence of death. Mankind’s death sentence includes both physical death and eternal punishment. “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). We cannot enter on our own merits. We come up short of God’s “security clearance” because “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). No amount of goodness or good works can approach the sinless perfection required for entry into heaven.
So Jesus Christ the spotless Lamb of God became our substitute. Being God, Jesus lived a sinless life. And having become a man, he was qualified to be our substitute in death, bearing the penalty of our sins. “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). When He died, He paid the price of our sins and purchased our ticket to heaven. Therefore, our final destination is dependent on knowing Him. My friend, only He can supply us with a valid ticket. Although Jesus paid the price of our ticket, it is necessary for God to credit what he did to our account. The Bible tells us that faith is required on our part for this transaction to take place. “For by grace you have been saved through faith…” (Ephesians 2:8). This is how we obtain our ticket to heaven. By His death, Jesus made it possible for us to choose our final destination.
It is faith that delivers us from a destination of suffering and secures our final destination in heaven. The kind of faith that is required means more than simply agreeing that Jesus died in our place. It involves turning from anything else you might be clinging to in hopes of getting a ticket to heaven. It’s believing we can have a reservation to heaven only through what Jesus has already done to make it possible. It is this personal dependence upon the Lord Jesus that secures a reservation for us and guarantees our final destination. Would you like to enter into such a relationship with Jesus right now? It is a personal step of faith, but the following prayer may help you put your decision into words:
Dear Lord Jesus, I have sinned against you and I am in need of a relationship with you that will result in forgiveness and secure my final destination with you in heaven. I acknowledge that You paid the price for me. I ask for Your forgiveness. I want to turn from my current life in order that I might now live my life for You. I receive Your forgiveness and I thank You for it. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, and lead me in the life that You have chosen for me. Amen.