The Greatest Thought

Daniel Webster was once asked what is the greatest thought that can occupy one’s mind.

What a powerful thing to contemplate. Just trying to think of the greatest thought might be the greatest challenge in and of itself.

One of my first suggestions of the greatest thought would be the concept of eternity or infinity. Our mortal minds cannot adequately grasp the concept of something with no beginning or no end. That indeed would be a great thought on which to think.

Perhaps the greatest thought to contemplate is the meaning of life. What is the meaning of life? Philosophers have dealt with the question for ages. The wise man Solomon explored the topic in the book of Ecclesiastes. He tried everything under the sun and came to the conclusion that man’s purpose is simply to fear GOD and keep His commandments.

Pharaoh asked one of the greatest questions in Exodus 5:2 when he posed, “Who is the LORD, that I should obey His voice?” That is certainly a great thought to ponder.

Or consider Job’s question in Job 2:9. Shall we accept good from GOD and not accept adversity? Some struggle with the idea of a good GOD allowing pain and suffering.

Perhaps the greatest thought is to consider GOD’S love for mankind. His love is so strong that Jesus Christ was willing to momentarily separate Himself from GOD the Father and take on the sins of the whole world just to give us an opportunity for salvation. Powerful thought.

Consider GOD’S forgiveness. With the salvation offered through Christ comes forgiveness. And through Him we are justified. I think of the simple definition of the term justified. It is just as if I’d never sinned. Thus I am able to come before GOD’S presence as if I’d never sinned.

These are all powerful ideas to occupy one’s mind. There are many others. What is the greatest evil? What is the greatest truth? This list could go on and on.

But remember I began by observing this question was presented to Daniel Webster. While each of us might debate what our response would be, let us note Daniel Webster’s reply. It is very interesting. His answer was that the greatest thought that can occupy one’s mind is to think about his accountability before GOD.


Hebrews 9:27 makes the following statement, “For it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.”

Every person who has ever lived will stand before GOD the Father in this judgment and give account for his life (Matthew 12:36, Romans 14:12, 1 Peter 4:5). With all eternity hanging in the balance I will give account for my life.

It is hard to disagree with Mr. Webster.

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