A TIME TO DIE:
“To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die…A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1-4).
Most people don’t like to think or talk about death, but the Bible makes it abundantly clear that there is a time to be born, and a time to die. Unless Jesus comes back in our life time, then there will be a day when every one of us will say farewell to our lives on planet earth, and enter into eternity.
In September of 2007, I said goodbye to my dad, Robert Bogle, who was only 55 years old when he lost his battle with cancer. When I attended his funeral in Calgary, it was a solemn reminder to me of life’s shortness, and of that fast approaching day when we will stand before the Lord. “LORD, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered, and that my life is fleeing away.” (Psalm 39:4). Perhaps you have experienced the death of a loved one. What are we as Christians to do in the ever-present face of death?
THE GRAVE IS NOT THE END – THERE IS LIFE AFTER DEATH.
“But let me tell you a wonderful secret God has revealed to us. Not all of us will die, but we will all be transformed. It will happen in a moment, in the blinking of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, the Christians who have died will be raised with transformed bodies. And then we who are living will be transformed so that we will never die. For our perishable earthly bodies must be transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die. When this happens – when our perishable earthly bodies have been transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die – then at last the Scriptures will come true: “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?” For sin is the sting that results in death… How we thank God, who gives us victory over sin and death through Jesus Christ our Lord. So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and steady, always enthusiastic about the Lord’s work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.” (1 Cor. 15:51-58).
In Revelation Chapter one, Jesus revealed Himself by saying, “Don’t be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the living one who died. Look, I am alive forever and ever. And I hold the keys of death and the grave.” As Christians, we don’t have to be afraid of death, because death is not an ending – it’s a new and exciting beginning. As long as we are living on planet earth, there will also be times where we will walk through the valley of the shadow of death. But even there, we will fear no evil, for God is with us. Let me give you just a sneak peak into what awaits us in Heaven…
“I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, the home of God is now among his people. He will live with them, and they will be his people. God himself will be with them. He will remove all of their sorrows, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. For the old world and its evils are gone forever.” (Rev. 21:3-4).
As long as we continue on our pilgrimage on planet Earth, we will experience seasons of weeping and laughing, mourning and dancing. But the hope we have as Christians is that one day we’re going to a wonderful place called Heaven where God will remove our sorrows, and there will be no more death, sorrow, crying or pain anymore. I long for that day – what a day of rejoicing that will be!
Pastor Chris Jordan