Whether exalted or degraded, you and I will exist forever and ever!! Never will we be able to get away from the being that is us. Let the soul feel its dignity, measure its value by what God has done to redeem it, and man for the first time will see his value. God created us, stamped us with His image, redeemed us by incarnating His Son, His Son died the cruelest death devised by man, entered the Strong Man’s house, and resurrected in glory. This man could never devise. God’s values the “I” immeasurably!! Again, the “I” is not the soul nor the spirit, it is the union of them. The “I” began at creation.
There are three stages of Life as we know it. The first stage of existence, that that is before the hereafter, is our existence on this physical planet called Earth. This life is but a single stage in God’s plan. What is called death is the end of this career and the beginning of a new life through which death is its birth. This new life is merely a new stage of our existence, a promotion, if you please, the prospects of which should stir the blood within us!! Here the “I” lives with a body woven around me. This stage is vastly more important than any other stage of my existence for it is on this stage all else depends. All future stages of existence depend on how this life is lived. In this stage-acts make habits; habits makes character; and character determines destiny!! This stage ends with the crisis of death. Death is the sundering of the soul and body. Because we have not experienced death we fear it. Because we cannot conceive of life outside this physical existence, we must depend on Him who was and has traveled here. He made known the direction to success. We fear, we shrink from the unknown. Yet, we had no more experience with this life at birth!! We entered this existence unafraid, unconcerned about tomorrow, innocent of any adjustment which would have to be made. How can we not face the fact of death without fear, as birth gave us much, death will give us more!!
“A leap into the dark”? This is how a renowned atheist described death but how does the God who created life describe death for His children? It is far less dark and less a leap than feared. I am reminded of many who have thought themselves hanging blindfolded from a window being told they are over a yawning abyss, in terror of an awful fall, when, no longer able to hold on, fall four inches!! There was no less terror, no less fear; but the reality was different than believed. We do not ignore sickness nor the pain associated with dieing, but these are but the birth pangs of our eternal existence. As the pangs of birth are not now remembered, will the pangs of death be any different, there?? The poet cries out; “There is no death, what seems so is transition.” God’s Word teaches us that death is birth, and what life conceals, death will reveal!!
As infant eyes open from the darkness of the womb to the sunlight of a new life, so our eyes that closed in the darkness of death will open to a “light that never was on sea or land.” This act of death, like the act of birth into this life will not be as the first birth!! No one will come into this “other” world to loneliness. On arrival, beaming eyes of joy await, love unbounded surrounds, and reaching out to receive us into eternal birth are the arms of parents/friends who are experienced in this new existence prepared (we hope!), and ready to guide us until we leave their moorings. Then we will become guides for those we love as the cycle continues until He who has conquered death will forever destroy it!! 1 Corinthians 15:24 All those who die in Christ are “carried by angels” to the other side. This indicates a saved soul’s passing into the unseen as attended, does it not? As they arrive at another temporary place (unless they are alive when our Lord returns) they will be greeted as in the first birth, in the arms of those who love them!!