12 November 2015

World Trade Centre and seeing forever


Last week I ascended 102 stories of the new One World Trade Center in downtown New York City. The elevator took 47 seconds, and thus traveled 22 miles per hour to get me there. I was not alone. The queue outside was not too long on that Tuesday, and I was happy to exit the lift at the top. The view was blocked by a video screen which quickly ran a history of the development of the area and of the building itself. Then the screen lifted and voila there was the world outside From above as the sun set across the City.

I was delighted with the views. As I walked forward, the path took us past the restaurant/ cafe and then we paraded onto the 100th floor where the expanses were visible in all 360 degrees. I remembered the Twin Towers had a similar view, but this one was clearer on this day. No clouds; just New Jersey in the distant background as the sun kept setting.

The theme of the show was 'see forever' and the company that sells photographs of you superimposed on the scenery (which of course I had to buy, you know, just had to) is named See Forever .com or such. Here's my photo in the sunset But it's not the same sun and it's not the same day and it's not the same location and ... but otherwise it's all true.

So I got to thinking about seeing forever. Could I really see forever from the top of the WTC? In one way the phrase means that I have unlimited viewing. Nothing got in the way of my seeing into the far distance. The only limitation I had was my own optics. In other words if I had a big enough telescope or binoculars, I could have seen Argentina or at least Miami. Even so, that would have only allowed me viewing of places on earth, so my telescope would have needed to point further up and I could have seen Alpha Centauri or the Southern Cross or such. But hey, I can do that from anywhere... no need to see from the top of a building in NYC, you know?

So what else might 'see forever' mean? It could mean that I can see into forever, that is, look into the future (and I suppose the past as well, although rarely is that the intended meaning.) The prophets of the Jewish Bible (nicknamed by some the Old Testament) were those who could see into the future and make predictions and tell forth the justice and mercy of the Almighty. Perhaps this is the 'see forever' understanding to take away from the WTC that day. To be fair, the Jewish prophets like Isaiah, Joel, Micah.. never claimed to see everything, only to teach/ preach what they did see, but they understood their limitations. A wise man knows his.

So let me recommend the third way to see this phrase. That is to see that there really is a forever. If you understand that life on earth is not all there is or will be, and I'm not speaking cosmologically, but rather that your life of its 30 years, 70 years, 91 years and 214 days, however long, is not all there is to your existence, then you are 'getting' it. We were born to live forever. (Deuteronomy 29.29, John 6.51) And that's because God lives in eternity and lives forever. (Ex. 3.15, Dt. 32.40, Ps 10.16) And He desires us to have a relationship with Him which is real and good. We have sinned, long ago and even yesterday, and God doesn't blink at that and at those. (Ecc.7.20, Ps.51.5, James 1.15) However, He has satisfied His own justice by sending Yeshua, the Jewish messiah, to die for us in Jerusalem and to be raised from the dead on the 3rd day. Sin, the great prevention of our spending eternity with Him, has been eradicated and thus we can not only see forever, we can live forever with the Lord. That's better than Argentina or Alpha Centauri.

Want to read more? Check out the Bible verses above, and have a quick word with the Lord. That's what they call prayer. Ask Him if this is all true. Ask Him who Yeshua is. Ask Him.. you will have plenty of time to ask Him lots of other things, too, if eternity is real. You don't have to spend the $32 to ascend the World Trade Center. You can talk to God right in your home or on the train. You can meet Him just now. No need to wait until Tuesday. Want to do that?

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