The older you get, the presence of death becomes more of a reality. In the past year, I have lost a cousin, aunt and father in law. At the last funeral I attended, I received news that my wife’s aunt Rose was recently diagnosed with cancer. Last week, Rose went home to be with the Lord. A homecoming in heaven, but a painful reminder of our temporary status on earth.
And the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit returns to God who gave it, Ecclesiastes 12:7.
According to Solomon, our bodies are on loan from God. The Hebrew word for Adam is Adamah, symbolic of God forming Adam’s body out of the earth. The moment death strikes human beings, souls return back to God. While your body is left to decay beneath the ground, your spirit awaits judgment before spending eternity in heaven or hell.
Now there are [distinctive] varieties of spiritual gifts [special abilities given by the grace and extraordinary power of the Holy Spirit operating in believers], but it is the same Spirit [who grants them and empowers believers]. 5 And there are [distinctive] varieties of ministries and service, but it is the same Lord [who is served]. 6 And there are [distinctive] ways of working [to accomplish things], but it is the same God who produces all things in all believers [inspiring, energizing, and empowering them]. 7 But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit [the spiritual illumination and the enabling of the Holy Spirit] for the common good, 1 Corinthians 12:4-7.
The apostle Paul referred to human bodies as a temple. When the Holy of holies was torn in two during the earthquake immediately following Jesus’ death on a cross, this event set the stage God’s presence to no longer be limited to a physical building. Rather, Jesus’ resurrection and the Day of Pentecost opened the door for the Holy Spirit to enter your life.
He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away,” Revelation 21:4.
In the last chapter of the Bible, John has a vision of Jesus in heaven. Seeing the toll death takes on friends, family and relatives, Jesus promises to provide an eternally environment where they will be no more tears. Heaven is the final destination where God will make you whole. Since death knows where to find you, make sure your plans are secured before your time is up, 1 John 5:13.
by Jay Mankus