If you are familiar with the teachings of the Bible you will know that: “ The days of our years are threescore years and ten,” (Psalms 90:10). In other words, we can expect to live 70 years, perhaps 80 if we are strong enough.
But what most people don’t know is that the writer of this Psalm, Moses, was interceding with God to remove a curse due to the Jewish rebellion of God at Kadesh Barnea (Numb. 14:26-35). Moses was complaining that most Jews in the wilderness were dying too young at 70, which had never been the average life span for humanity.
God had already spoken on this matter: “His days shall be 120 years,”(Gen.6: 5), and He never changed that. Moses himself lived to this age (Deut.34:7). Joshua lived to 110 (Josh.24: 29).
Jacob in fact had complained that he was too young to die at 130 (Gen 47: 9) and in the Millennium a person dying at 100 will be thought of as a child (Isa.65: 20).
So these are the statements of scripture.
But the big question is: can we affect the length of our earthly life? Can we lengthen it or shorten it and if so how?
Well the good news is that yes we can prolong our life. But let’s first be warned how our time here can be shortened.
Warning: Bible Study straight ahead!
In Psalms and Proverbs check out how God shortens the days of the unrighteous: Ps.89: 45, 102:23 ; Prov. 10:27.
“But You O God will bring down the wicked into the pit of destruction; men of blood and treachery shall not live out half their days,” (Ps. 55: 23 Amp.).
“Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding; he who does it is destroying his own life,” (Prov. 6:32 Amp.).
We need to heed these warnings including: “flee fornication,” (1 Cor.6: 18). This is New Testament scripture. Fornication is sex outside of a covenant marriage. Living together in a legal government “pact” is not a covenant.
For Christians who live in loose relationships the Apostle warns: “to deliver such a one to Satan for physical discipline that his spirit may yet be saved,” (1 Cor.5: 5 Amp.). This could mean early death.That’s not your touchy feely type of modern pastoring! The Apostle would not be welcomed in many evangelical groups today, as I myself am not because I preach his Gospel.
In the same letter to Corinth, Paul explains a less well known reason why many die early.
The Apostle gives this warning in his teaching on Holy Communion. For sake of time I won’t type the whole of 1 Corinthians 11:23-29 but please take the time to refresh your memory of this well quoted text.
He warns of eating the bread and drinking the cup with an unworthy attitude.
“Let a man examine himself and so let him eat of that bread and drink of that cup. For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks damnation, not discerning the Lord’s Body. For this cause many are weak and sickly and many sleep (the sleep of death),” (1 Cor. 11:28-30).
How should we judge ourselves? What should we judge?
In Matthew 7 we find Jesus’ Words: “Do not judge and criticise others so that you may not be judged and criticised yourself,” (Mat.7:1 Amp.).
So we are to walk in love and not criticise others. We are to forgive everyone who has offended us. We are to avoid letting bitterness and resentment take root in our hearts.
Also we should:
“Never return evil for evil, but on the contrary blessing. Praying for their welfare, happiness and protection. Truly pitying and loving them that you yourselves may obtain a blessing,” (1 Pet.3: 9 Amp.).
We should obey Jesus command to: “love our enemies and to do good to them that hate us,” (Mat 5:44).
We should also judge ourselves on our diet. Many get used to being overweight and obese and just avoid looking in mirrors. In Christian circles it takes a brave person to hold up the mirror of truth and warn against the dangers of overeating. Diabetes kills and kills early.
Consider yourself to have a sister. She is called Godly Wisdom. She goes with me everywhere. See Proverbs 7:4.
She gives me: “Length of days (long life) is in her right hand and in her left hand riches and honour,” (Prov.3: 16).
“For by me (wisdom of God’s Word) your days will be multiplied and the years of your life shall be increased,” (Prov.9: 11).
Don’t leave home without this attitude also:
“The fear of the Lord prolongs days, but the years of the wicked shall be shortened,” (Prov.10: 27).
Therefore we need to conduct our lives guided by the wisdom of the Bible and show reverential fear towards our Father God.
With respect to relationships:
“Children obey your parents in the Lord; for this is right. Honour your father and mother, which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with you and you may live long upon the earth,” (Eph. 6:1-3).
So many younger people now speak badly to and about their mom and dad. They are reducing their own life expectation by such dishonour.
To avoid an early grave and to appear before Jesus having completed our earth mission we therefore need:
Study to know Godly wisdom and apply it.
Reverentially fear our Father and to love Him.
Respect our parents and care for them in later life.
Flee away from ungodly sexual relationships.
Judge ourselves as to how we are walking in love and treating others.
Pray for, do good to and love our enemies.
Eat wisely and avoid being overweight. Measure your waistline (it should be no greater than half your height).
By following these guidelines you can live as many of the allocated 120 years as you want to and bear fruit into old age like a palm tree, (Ps. 92: 14).