This quote from P.T. Forsyth (1907) was posted on the wall in my last classroom for 10 years. Many times students would ask me for an explanation. The discussions that followed also included ideas presented in the following:
Corinthians 15:19 (NIV) “If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men…
“What happens to a world that has abandoned its hope for heaven and has substituted dreams and longings that lodge themselves in a world without heaven? What happens when a strong transcendent purpose no longer operates upon human lives and human societies? What powers are invoked, and what is lost, when the highest goals of human existence must emerge from the possibilities within life?”
A.J. Conyers in the book The Eclipse Of Heaven.
1 John 2:15-17 (NIV) Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For everything in the world–the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does–comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.
“No, no, no my child: do not pray. If you do, you will throw away the main advantage of this place. Written over the gate here are the words, ‘Leave every hope behind, ye who enter.’ Only think what a relief that is! For what is hope? … Here there is no hope, and consequently no duty, no work, nothing to be gained by praying, nothing to be lost by doing what you like. Hell, in short, is a place where you have nothing to do but amuse yourself…
George Bernard Shaw in Man and Superman.
2 Corinthians 5:1-4 (NIV) Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.