How Much Is Your Soul Worth?
by Greg Williamson (c) 2013

Body and Soul
What do human trafficking, abortion on demand, and homelessness all have in common? Answer: they treat life as a cheap commodity -- something to be sold, discarded, or ignored. However, because they are such huge, overwhelming problems, if/when we hear or read about them, we may spend a few seconds feeling bad for the people involved, and we may even whisper a quick prayer -- but then we hurriedly refocus our attention back to ourselves and our wants and needs.

Why should we care about the poor and suffering in the world, anyway? Put simply, it is because every person on this planet is a human being. And, if you believe the Bible, that means each person is created in God's image. Which means that every person has inherent, infinite value and worth; no human being is cheap or worthless. And yet the external self -- what we see on the outside -- provides only the merest hint of who we really are. You know, the hopes and dreams, fears and uncertainties, love and joy that is a part of our inner life or soul.

In actuality, every person is a combination of the material and the immaterial -- body and soul. And while the human body is an incredible thing (medically/scientifically speaking), the soul is literally priceless. And yet as cheaply as some people treat human life, they value their own soul even less.

The Afterlife
Where will you go when you die? Do you ever slow down long enough to think about the answer to that question? Most people don't. Most people are too busy dealing with everyday life to think about something as deep and mysterious as life after death or the eternity of the human soul. Most people who believe in heaven and hell hope that they will have been good enough to make it into heaven when they die. But do we really value our souls so cheaply? If this life truly is but a stepping stone to eternity, shouldn't we do everything within our power to be ready for the next phase of our existence?

The Bible teaches us that no one is good enough to share heaven with God: For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God's glorious standard (Romans 3:23 NLT). If we are depending on a mixture of our own goodness and God's mercy, we will be profoundly disappointed on the day we stand before him, since each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment (Hebrews 9:27 NLT).

That is the bad news. The good news is that God himself has already done everything necessary to enter into a personal and permanent relationship with us. He is ready right now, this very instant, to forgive the sins that separate us from him, and to adopt us into his forever family. Why? Because that is how much he loves us.

Jesus Christ
Everything hinges on Jesus Christ and his mission to rescue the human race. In simplest terms, here is what the Bible teaches us about our greatest need and God's loving provision to meet that need:

  1. Every human being is sinful and thus separated from a pure and holy God. For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God's glorious standard. (Romans 3:23)
  2. The penalty for sin is death -- that is, eternal separation from God. For the wages of sin is death ... (Romans 6:23a)
  3. Jesus Christ died in your place so that your sin can be forgiven and you can be brought into a right relationship with God. But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. (Romans 5:8)
  4. To be forgiven for your sin and brought into a right relationship with God, you must accept Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God, and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved. (Romans 10:9-10)
  5. Having given control of your life to Christ, you must decide to stop living for self and start living for God. Then, calling the crowd to join his disciples, [Jesus] said, "If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake and for the sake of the Good News, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?" (Mark 8:34-36) (all NLT)

My prayer is that you will take a serious look at where you are in life. If you are living without Christ, you are not really living at all. But even more than that, the Bible teaches us that this life is only a stepping stone to eternity, and that anyone who leaves this life without first having been made right with God through personal, saving faith in Jesus Christ will spend all of eternity in painful separation from him (see Revelation 20:10, 12a, 15).

The Next Step
If you have accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, then the next step is to start growing and maturing in your faith. The key is to focus on the basic building blocks of the Christian life: prayer, Bible study, and fellowship. Here is a good place to start. And of course it is vital that you quickly find and join a Bible believing church for both support and accountability.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have.

Greg Williamson

(click here for this same material in a trifold pdf brochure)