Regardless of how rich our life becomes, how wonderful or fulfilling, the undeniable fact staring us down is that our life will end. We will die. Is there any hope? Are we just killing time here on earth until time kills us? Anyone who considers this reality must have some plan for life after death. Or at least must have honestly and exhaustively pursued all possibilities. For our life will end, and if we have not found a way to live after death, our lives are meaningless and hopeless. We must have an exit strategy for life itself. Everyone needs one. To deny this is to fool no one but yourself.
Some have considered this question and concluded there is no exit. That we are trapped and that outside of this life our existence will cease. This is a valid conclusion, though I seriously doubt that most who believe this have honestly and exhaustively considered whether there is an exit. They say they believe it, but they really do not.
I believe that most people have concluded that there is some exit to this life that leads to the next. If so, I would expect all these to either be frantically searching for that exit, or having found it, to be resting confidently in great relief that they've found the exit and have secured safe passage. I continue to be perplexed that we don't see widespread, frantic panic or vast crowds celebrating their access to the exit. Instead, a muddle of confusion and uncertainty exists that would be expected only of folks who doubt the necessity of finding the exit. But how can they?
If someone concludes that there must be life after death, then rationally they must know that ensuring the happiness of their eternal life is their utmost priority. In comparison, nothing else really matters at all! Surely, to be completely miserable in this short life is far better than being miserable for all eternity, and no price is too high to ensure unending peace and joy.
Anyone who seriously considers eternity quickly realizes we are created – there is an Eternal Being with whom we must do business. It's only logical to realize that this Being has thoughts and powers well beyond our own. Therefore it is only logical to assume that we are dependent on this Being revealing Itself to us. We do not have the mental capacity to sufficiently understand such a Being without this revelation.
Therefore, the seeker of eternal life then seeks this revelation. He will realize that this revelation is likely ancient, as the Creator is ancient, indeed everlasting. The seeker would logically be anxious to consider writings of antiquity that claim to give insight to the eternal. The various scriptures of various religions seem likely candidates to be this revelation. As the seeker considers which of the religious teachings are likely the truth, he realizes they all differ in various ways such that only one can be true. God will not contradict Himself – He is the standard for truth, goodness, and beauty and is not a confused self-contradicting Being.
As the various religious teachings are considered, a distinct pattern of these teachings emerges. All the various religious teachings prescribe commands men must obey in order to be righteous and acceptable to the Creator. Some call it Karma, others call it an emptying of the material, some call it the golden rule, etc. All religions teach this – all except one. The teachings of Jesus Christ in the Bible describe man as unwilling and unable to obey God, and that Jesus suffered the rightful punishment due to people so that all who believe in Jesus are accepted eternally by the Creator.
The seeker must logically consider which of these two basic teachings is correct – work toward eternity with God by our own strength and goodness, or realize the infinite distance between our own goodness and God. Surely the logical decision is that God is infinitely greater than we and all hopes to earn eternal life will fall short. The only logical, reasonable path to eternal peace is the path that God gives us through His mercy provided by Jesus Christ.