The Legacy Project
Chuck Misslerby Gunnar Johnson
The day before I got word that Chuck Missler had passed away I started a commentary by Chuck on the book of Ecclesiastes.
Writing this piece has been emotional for me, Chuck was my hero, mentor and my spiritual father. Like many of you I am grieving the loss of a great man but my heart is comforted knowing he is enjoying the incredible benefits of a life well lived at this moment in heaven.
Vanity, vanity all is vanity says Solomon in the book of Ecclesiastes. But yet a life spent honoring God is not vanity, that is the ultimate conclusion of the book. Chuck set his sights on serving God through full time ministry in a way that was not vanity. Dr. Missler was always a man gifted with an incredible intellect, but the way he choose to spend his life is what is most impressive. He accomplished what Solomon said was the ultimate conclusion of life. “Fear God and keeping his commandments.”
Despite having financial challenges in his career, due to a bad business deal involving the Russian government, Chuck applied his focus and gifts towards those 66 books written by 40 different authors written over several thousands of years yet making up an integrated message system. In 1990 there was a time when everything he built crumbled. He spent his career doing business turn-arounds, why not apply the same experience and giftings towards turning around his own personal finances? I think he didn’t because Chuck was highly aware of depositing treasure in heaven not on earth.
Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
— Matthew 6:19–21
Even the last verse in the last chapter of Ecclesiastes 12:14 reads,
For God will bring every deed into judgment including every hidden thing whether it’s good or evil.
Chuck was highly aware of time passing like sand slipping through the fingers. Remember the story about counting up the weekends and spooking his Jewish friend on a flight by asking, “How many weekends do you have left, 200 or so?” Few people live with the understanding that time is a finite commodity. We can always make more money but can’t make more time.
All the days ordained for me
were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
— Psalm 139:16
Losing millions of dollars, losing his identity as a successful businessman he describes a time when he considered suicide because it was an easy way of escape and the $5 million life insurance would solve his family and friends financial problems. Several things stopped him, the love for his family, a deep realization that God is still in control and not done with him and a kingdom perspective on the challenges of life.
Thank goodness Chuck choose to live with the focus he did and put his faith in what God could do with his life if he just surrendered his amazing natural gifts into God’s hands. I would venture to say most of us connected with Chuck’s teaching after 1990 in the last quarter of his life once he decided to go into full time ministry. God can’t change our past but He sure can change the way we use our past for the future.
Chuck use to always say, “Our scars are our credentials”.
There are daily decisions we all make. Solomon asked what profit does a man have from all the labor he experiences under the sun. I would encourage much in every way, if our life is a life focused for the furthering of God’s Kingdom. Is there truly a way to invest our life that makes a difference for all of eternity? Is there really a way to store up treasure in heaven? Those of you who know your Bible well know and for those of you who have processed through enough of Chuck Missler’s teaching to no longer be well adjusted Bible students, know the reality of the Bible’s promises about our future eternal reward.
Those of you who don’t have a full grasp of this concept I will take just a few lines to give you a mini lesson on a subject worth years of study. Two reminders. One, for your personal edification making you aware of every day you could be investing in the Kingdom. Secondly I want to relieve some grief by reminding you what Chuck is experiencing today because of his dedication to Christ Jesus. Remember Jesus said in Matthew 6:24 to store up treasure in heaven not on earth and Paul again mentioned the concept in 1 Timothy 6:18:
Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. 19 In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.
Paul warned us in 1 Cor 3 that we are all building up works measured as wood, hay and stubble or gold, silver and precious stones. All our works will be measured and given rewards from Jesus according to the work and motivation in which we accomplish our life tasks. Can we live a life that is eternally meaningless yet be saved? Yes, but that is a struggle if you are really in Christ. Why live that way, this is our one earthy opportunity to be eternal investors!
There truly is not material possession, experience or pleasure that gives satisfaction. Much effort can be expended with no real results. Success is full of promise but outside of the work for God there is really no eternal success. Vanity, vanity all is vanity Solomon says. Any form of employment or activity can be done for the glory of God. Many amazing achievers in our world find meaninglessness at the end of their journey. Reach the top of the world by climbing the success ladder and you may very well find it is leaning on the tower of meaninglessness at the end. What good does it profit to be wise and wealthy when death awaits each of us? The value is in all the opportunities we are granted in life. What do we do? “Carpe Diem” which is Latin for seize the day! Just as my friend and mentor Chuck Missler did in the focus of his life.
We are left with thousands of hours of timeless Bible teaching through commentaries and briefing packs. We also have many great memories with Dr. Missler, tons of unique insights, perspectives and a foundation built on the love of the Word of God. Our K-House team is strong, and the future is exciting. Death always feels like a period in the middle of a sentence. It gives us an opportunity to examine our lives and make course corrections to be more effective and more intentional.
As you re-examine your Kingdom impact, please consider partnering with us financially to continue the ministry of Koinonia House.
As Chuck would close, lets bow our hearts for a word of prayer.
Father, I thank you for the saving power of your son Jesus Christ. Thank you Father for a man who pursued real value and meaning in his life by using his life to serve you in the Kingdom. Father, thank you for loving us so much that you provided us a destiny so amazing that we can’t even imagine. Father increase in each of us our hunger for your Word, a hunger to pursue the purpose of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Lord we love you and love our friend Chuck Missler. Thank you for the impact that you’ve had on our lives through Chuck Missler. I pray a special grace over his family and friends as they grieve his loss, but we know someday we will be celebrating together in heaven.
The Legacy Project