December 18, 2009

Fear of Death

Written by Boyd Bailey

Fear of Death… “… And free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.” Hebrews 2:15

Jesus conquered death, therefore followers of Jesus need not fear death. We may fear dying maybe, but not death. For the believer in Jesus Christ death is a pass through to heaven, for the unbeliever to hell. It is a transition from this life to the next. It is a doorway to eternity. Death is not final. Indeed, in many ways it is the beginning. It is the beginning of an eternity in the physical presence of Jesus. Death escorts you into eternity.

Everything you have experienced with Christ on earth is an appetizer of what is to come. Your faith can only digest a mere morsel of what God has in store for those who love Him, so do not let the prospects of death get you down. It is a graduation to be celebrated. You have remained faithful in this school of life, and now God has a glorious graduation in store for you. It is a graduation like none other because it is a graduation into glory.

Yes, there may be fear of the unknown, but there is much we do know that places fear at bay. We know that death for the follower of Christ places them in an environment of sinless bliss. You can live and breathe without the fear of aids, murder, adultery, hurt, sorrow, lying, cheating, pain, hunger, abortion or poverty. Life in heaven is not just good, it is great. Death passes you from good blessings on earth to great blessings in heaven.

Death releases you from the pain of your current suffering. Your suffering has perfected your character and faith in Christ. Now you are ready to be received back home. Your suffering has drawn you into incredible intimacy with your Savior. As a consequence, many others beyond your comprehension have been drawn close to your Lord. Nurses, doctors, friends and relatives stand in awe and fall on their knees in awe of your God.

Your death will not only set you permanently free, but it will do the same for others who believe. They believe because of your faith. Death is freedom, and freedom is not to be feared. So in the meantime, make every effort to prepare yourself and others for death. The fear of death creeps in where there has been no preparation. You can ignore its reality and you will still die. You can deny death, but not its consequences.

You may have a chance to repent on your deathbed, but why wait? Why take the chance of choosing hell over heaven? Death is not a lottery ticket; so don’t gamble with your soul. Go with God’s sure thing, faith in Jesus Christ. He died and rose from the dead. He can be trusted. He has met death on the cross, conquered it and sin, and reigns in heaven.

Furthermore, love on the dying. We are all dying. However, reach out to those closer to death’s door. Walk with the dying for their edification and yours. The depth of wisdom that comes from the dying has the scent of heaven’s fragrance. What’s important falls from their lips, as priorities are focused. Caring for the dying prepares you for dying.

Dying may be sudden or a process. Either way God can be trusted. We have questions about the timing of death that may only be answered in heaven. However, God is good, God is great, let us thank Him for every breath we take. Enjoy and celebrate death’s release, because Jesus died and rose again so that you can do the same.

“But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.” Philippians 3:20-21

Am I prepared for death? Who do I know who is dying that I can comfort in Christ?

Related Readings
: Psalm 23:4; Proverbs 14:27; Acts 2:24; 1 Corinthians 15:21-54

Transformational Living
What did I learn from the Lord in today’s Bible reading?

How will I respond?

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