• Eli Schnell

Karma, or What?


Karma is a Hindu and Buddhist belief that people are reincarnated to live again on earth, and the success or failure of your next life is decided by your actions in this one. When something awful happens to someone in this life, karma is often blamed. “Due to the choices I made in a previous life, I am enduring some tragedy now,” some think. It’s a clever way to allow a person to ignore how many of their present life circumstances are the direct result of their everyday choices.


The Bible presents something altogether different from karma. First, every person lives only one earthly life, by which they are judged, and their eternal dwelling decided (Heb. 9:27). Second, the Bible holds each person accountable for their actions and the results they bring in this life as well as in eternity. Consider this basic principle given in Galatians 6:7: “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.”


This principle can be applied to all of life. If I am a law-abiding citizen who lives in submission to the governing authorities, those authorities will allow me to continue living in peace. However, if I rebel against them, I suffer the punishment they see fit. Each person bears the consequences of their actions.


In Galatians, however, the stakes are higher than just going to prison or living in the suburbs. Heaven and Hell are in view: eternal life belongs only to those who sow to the Spirit, that is, those who do what is pleasing to God (Gal. 6:8-9).


While the false concept of karma presents an eternal do-over, the inspired word of God reveals that every person is living their one life right now, and our choices have eternal consequences. Make wise choices by obeying the gospel and living according to the instruction of God, and He will give you eternal life.

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