You Can't Take It with You

Bill, a very rich man, learned that he would die within a few days. He called his three best friends: a doctor, a preacher, and a lawyer to his bedside. He said, "My preacher friend has told me that you can't take it with you, but I believe I have worked out a way so that I can. Doc tells me that I won't live long, so I have prepared three sealed envelopes, each containing $50,000. When I die, I want each of you to walk by the casket and drop in your envelope with the $50,000."
A short time later, the three men attended his funeral and then met together. The preacher said, "I've got a confession to make. We've been needing to put a new roof on the church for a long time, and I took $10,000 out of Bill's envelope and used it for the roof." The doctor said, "That makes it easier for me, because I took $25,000 out and used it for my new clinic and only dropped in $25,000." The lawyer said, "Well, my conscience is clear. I did just what Bill said. I kept my envelope, picked up both of yours and dropped a check in the casket for the whole amount of $150,000. It hasn’t been cashed yet, though."
Friends, when we die and enter the next life neither a $150,000 check or that much in cash will do us any good. Yes, money does have value in this life, though not nearly as much as many folks think. Yet, in the next life money is totally worthless. As someone said, “Gold is used for pavement in heaven, and in the other place there is absolutely nothing there that you’d want to purchase even if you could bring gold there.” Actually, there is no way to transfer wealth in any
form to the afterlife. Whether we end up in heaven or hell, our money and all the rest of our possessions stay here. Archeologists have found rich deposits of precious metals and jewels in the coffins of ancient pagan rules. Thousands of years after these individuals have died, their bodies have decayed, their soul is no longer there, but their wealth has stayed right in the coffin. Wherever these individuals have gone, they were unable to take it with them.
Friend, perhaps you are thinking, “Well, of course it is foolish to think our money will give us any benefit after we die. Why even mention this obvious truth?” Yes, most folks would acknowledge that we cannot take our wealth with us, but it appears that fact has not sunk in for many people. A lot of folks devote a great deal of time and energy to building up their net worth but give little thought to what will happen to their souls after they die. Often there seems to be a refusal to come to grips with the reality that death bats a thousand and that no one gets out of this life alive. However, when we really understand how certain death is, we will probably be less concerned about how our investments are doing and will instead pay more attention to the health of our soul. The key to a healthy soul is to put our confidence in the Lord Jesus, rather than in riches. As we seek to honor God and serve other people, we are making eternal investments. When our life on this earth ends, those will be the only investments that matter.
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Dan Erickson