Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 5, 1970

No Fool

He Is No Fool Who Gives What He Cannot Keep To Get What He Cannot Lose

Billy W. Moore

The above statement proclaims a great truth that should be learned by all. It was made by Jim Elliott, who with four other men went to a heathen island to teach the people of Jesus, but the islanders thought they were cannibals and killed all five of them. But the man who made that statement surely understood the value of a soul and the worth of heaven.

What you have in this world — lands, houses, riches, your natural and acquired abilities, yea your own life — you cannot keep. "For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out." (I Tim. 6:7) Job said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither." (Job 1:21) The man is no fool who gives these things which he cannot keep to get that which he cannot lose.

Yes, there is something you can have and cannot lose — that something is life eternal. You can have it by believing in Jesus Christ and obeying his will. "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." (Romans 6:23) Of course it is obvious that when one gets eternal life he cannot lose it. However, eternal life is not in this world, but "in the world to come," so said our Lord. (Mark 10:30)

Eternal life is in Christ. "And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son." (I John 5:11) To those who are in Christ, God has given the promise of eternal life. "And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life." (1 John 2: 25) God has promised it and God cannot lie. We are "in hope of eternal life" (Titus 1:2), and in the world to come it shall become a reality.

We must be in Christ to have the promise of eternal life. We are in Christ when we believe and obey his will. Jesus said, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved." (Mark 16:16) Paul said, "For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.... And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise." (Gal. 3:26-29)

Jesus said, "What is a man profited if he shall gain the whole world, and lost his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matt. 16:26) Yet, many people think so highly of earthly treasures that they are unwilling to follow Christ. (Cf. Matt. 19:22) We must desire to lay up for ourselves treasures in heaven. (Matt. 6:20) This requires the proper use of our material goods (Cf. I Tim. 6:17-19). It demands that we be willing to lose our own life for Christ. "For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall fine it."

Remember, the things you have in this world you cannot keep; but God has a gift for you which when received you cannot lose. Thus, "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to get what he cannot lose."

— Box 204, Butler, Missouri 64730