Christian Pilgrim


The Emptiness of Life

I want to talk today about a subject that people don't seem to want to talk about. Maybe they don't want to admit it, or face it. I'm talking about the emptiness of life. What are we living for? We get up, we eat, we do what we do, we sleep, then after a few years we die. That's it. What's the point? Why bother?

And here's another thing. After we're dead, who remembers us? Yes, many of us will have family members who'll miss us, although it has to be said, that's not the case with everybody. But, even the family members we've left behind will die eventually, and then we'll be completely forgotten about. Go to a graveyard. Some of the more modern graves will have flowers on them, but most are forgotten about completely. And that's going to be us one day. So what's the point living?

And while we're living, what are we doing? To most people, the only reason for living is to enjoy themselves. But what's the point? So, we live for a few years, we have what we might call a “good time,” and then we die. There's one question I'd like to ask about that kind of life. What good is it to anybody else? It's not. It's pointless.

And if we only ever live for ourselves, quite often we're not going to be able to get what we want, so we'll constantly be frustrated. There's no complete satisfaction in this world, no matter how hard we try to obtain it. So what's the point?

King Solomon was one of the wisest and richest men that ever lived. And this is what he said about his own life:

Ecclesiastes 2:2-11
I said of laughter, It is mad: and of mirth, What doeth it? I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, .... and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life. I made me great works; I builded me houses; I planted me vineyards: I made me gardens and orchards, …. I got me servants and maidens, ….; also I had great possessions .... I gathered me also silver and gold, ….: I gat me men singers and women singers. And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; ….. Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labour that I had laboured to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.”

At least acknowledging that there's a problem with living for self, is the first step to finding an answer. But we don't even want to acknowledge there's a problem at all. We just want to carry on living for ourselves, for what we want, for what we can get out of life. But do you know what that is? A complete waste of a life. It's done no good at all. Oh yes, we might've enjoyed ourselves, but so what?

Why shouldn't God punish us for a life like that? Why shouldn't He? It's pointless. It's empty. It's a complete waste of time. God has put every one of us on this earth for a purpose, to be useful. Not to live for ourselves and waste our time. King Solomon eventually came to this conclusion:

Ecclesiastes 12:13,14
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.”

Fear God and keep His commandments. That's the whole duty of man. Not wasting our lives living for ourselves.

Proverbs 9:10
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.”

Wisdom isn't pretending God doesn't exist and living for ourselves. That's exactly the opposite, that's foolishness.

Psalm 14:1
The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God.”

And if there is a God, we're responsible to Him. He put us here. He gave us life. He's given us every breath we have. Every one of us needs to repent of the foolish self-centred lives we've all lived in the past, and turn to Him. Yet we hate the very idea of keeping His commandments so much. What's wrong with them? His commandments are not grievous. They're delightful.

Luke 10:27
Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”

What's wrong with that? Nothing. It's a beautiful way of life. The only problem we've got, is that our self-centred hearts don't want to do it. In fact even if we tried, we'd find it impossible. Which is why we need a Saviour. We can't save ourselves. We can't change ourselves. We're stuck with hearts that only want to live for ourselves. And we find it impossible to change. But if we truly repent of our sins, and call on the one Saviour God has sent into the world, our Lord Jesus Christ, we can be changed. He will give us a new heart, a new nature that wants to please God, that'll be able to please Him. And we'll find we can at last begin to live useful lives.

No other religion believes in a Saviour who saves us from our selves, our own selfish natures. In every other religion, you have to do something to placate the god or gods concerned. But we can't. Whatever we're asked to do, we won't be able to do it, because we're so self-centred by nature. We're not good enough. But Christians have a Saviour, who saves His people from their sins. We don't have to do anything to placate Him. We just have to repent of our sins, genuinely want to live a new life, and call on Him to change us. He's there for the asking.

Or do you want to carry on living for yourself? Living an empty life, or maybe trying to placate some god, when you just know you can't do it. Do you know what Jesus Christ said?

Matthew 11:28-30
Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

The striving can be over. Whether it's living for yourself, or trying to placate a god you just can't placate, because he'll just want more and more from you. Come to rest in Jesus Christ. He's yours for the asking. Free of charge. Just find somewhere quiet and pray to Him. And I guarantee you will not be disappointed. Thank you for listening.