Sunday, February 28, 2016
“Thou shalt rise up before the hoary [gray] head, and honour the face of the old man, and fear thy God: I am the LORD” (Leviticus 19:32 KJV).
According to a recent study, since the start of the 21st century, more Americans have been living to age 100. There were approximately 50,000 Americans at least age 100 in the year 2000; in 2014, nearly 72,000 people. Undoubtedly, improved healthcare is one reason. We can only wonder how high that number will go—or the maximum age!
I know two of these people. Currently, one lady I know is 101 or 102. When asked about her longevity, she said, “I read my Bible and drink cranberry juice every day!” One of my Dad’s relatives just turned age 105—she was born a year before the Titanic sank! As for her health, she takes just an occasional one-half blood pressure pill. She lives in an assisted-living facility (still by herself last I heard). Many years before my birth, another relative on Dad’s side of the family lived a few days past her 105th birthday. She had raised seven children by herself after her husband died—she outlived him 70 years!
According to The Guinness Book of World Records, the oldest woman ever documented is a French lady named Jeanne Louise Calment (1875–1997). She lived to be an astounding 122 years and 164 days old, dying of unknown causes—having outlived her husband, daughter, and grandson by many decades. This lady had complete mental awareness until her dying moment.
Of course, the most famous “supercentenarian” ever recorded was Methuselah, who lived to be an amazing 969 years (Genesis 5:27). I have no problem taking that age literally, given the unique conditions at the time.
Friends, when we think about these long lives, so many decades of living, let us remember that even these are but a tiny speck compared to eternity. In God’s mind, 122 years—or 969 years—is just a “blink of an eye.” No matter how old we live on this earth, there is a whole lot more living in eternity for us all. May we trust Jesus Christ as our Saviour today. Eternity literally awaits us, in heaven or in hell!
Our latest Bible Q&A: “Does Acts 2:47 support Calvinism?”