WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
APRIL 19, 2022
TOPIC: DEATH IS NOT THE END OF LIFE
BY T. O. BANSO
“Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen” (1 Corinthians 15:12-13 New King James Version).
There are many Easter lessons and one of them is that death is not the end of life. Many people live as if death is the end of life. It is the end of your existence on earth but also the beginning of your journey into eternity.
When Jesus said, “It is finished,” it didn’t mean He was finished. Those who conspired to crucify Him must have been happy as they mocked Him and believed that they had seen His end. But they were wrong. There was the resurrection after the crucifixion. They could crucify Him but they couldn’t stop His resurrection.
1 Corinthians 2:8 says none of the rulers of this age knew the hidden wisdom of God, for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. It was the wisdom of God to give up His Son to die for the sins of the world and to raise Him on the third day. So Jesus was right when He said God should forgive those who conspired to crucify Him and mocked Him, for they did not know what they did (Luke 23:34).
The resurrection of Jesus from the dead is a lesson to everyone that death is not the end of life. There is also resurrection for everyone, saint or sinner, after death because there is life after life on earth. Paul says, “Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen” (1 Corinthians 15:12-13 New King James Version).
You must have mourned the death of some loved ones. You might have described their death as an irreparable loss. You may still be missing them. But one day, you’re going to die also, and people will mourn your departure. It will be everybody’s turn to die one day. But death is not the end of life.
Paul says Christians should not mourn as unbelievers do. “But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 New King James Version). He describes death as falling asleep. And if one sleeps, He is expected to wake up. Nobody sleeps forever except when sleep turns to death. You won’t die in your sleep in Jesus’ name
After Lazarus died, Jesus said, “Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up” (John 11:11 New King James Version). Jesus went to wake up Lazarus by bringing Him back to life. He woke Him up before the actual time he should have woken up at the resurrection! This is also a pointer to the fact that death is not the end of life. As Christ was raised from the dead, Paul hoped to experience the resurrection from the dead (Philippians 3:11).
When the rapture takes place, 1 Thessalonians 4:16 says the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then those who are alive shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air and be with the Lord forever (verse 17).
Both the sinner and the saint will wake up from their sleep at the resurrection to face judgment. After death, there are two kinds of resurrection awaiting human beings: the resurrection of life and the resurrection of condemnation. John 5:29 says those who have done good among the dead will experience the resurrection of life and those who have done evil will experience the resurrection of condemnation.
Hebrews 9:27 says it is appointed unto men once to die but after this the judgment. Those who think that once they die, it ends everything deceive themselves. Those who think after death there will be no consequences for how they lived on earth delude themselves. There is judgment after death.
2 Corinthians 5:10-11 says, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are well known to God, and I also trust are well known in your consciences” (New King James Version).
Whereas the judgment of the saints is to receive an eternal reward; the judgment of the sinners (those who died without Christ) is to receive condemnation. Some saints will be saved but will not receive eternal reward because their deeds are worthless and cannot survive the test of fire.
1 Corinthians 3:11-15 says, “For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire” (New King James Version).
Death is not the end of life. What is your relationship with Jesus? How are you living your life in Christ? Is your work in Christ worthy or worthless? There is no reward for worthless work at the judgment seat of Christ. Such work will go up in flames although those affected will be saved because of their faith in Christ.
However, the Bible says the sinners, the wicked, or those who died without Christ shall end in hellfire. The wicked shall be turned into hell and all the nations that forget God (Psalm 9:17). Revelation 20:12 says, “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books” (New King James Version).
According to verse 13, the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one according to his works. Anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire (verse 15). Is your name in the Book of life? In other words, have you surrendered your life to Jesus? Have you accepted Him as your Lord and Saviour?
If you escape giving your life to Jesus Christ on earth; you cannot escape eternal damnation after death! This is the second death and it is eternal separation from the life of God. “But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8 New King james Version). This is everlasting fire, hellfire (Matthew 18:8, 9; 5:22; 25:41; Mark 9:47). The worm there does not die and the fire is not quenched (Mark 9:44, 46, 48; Isaiah 66:24).
Death is not the end of life. Where will you spend your eternity? Will your resurrection be of life or condemnation?
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner, and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner, and I cannot save myself. I believe Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and was raised on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like the palm tree and grow like the cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Jesus Christ, I surrender my life to You now and accept You as my Lord and Saviour. Holy Spirit, convict all those who have not put their faith in Jesus Christ to do so this season. Help me to follow Jesus to the end and serve Him in a way that my work will not be burnt by fire, and I will receive my eternal reward.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President, Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
Phone No: +2348155744752, +2348033113523
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