Do not be afraid of those who kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. Rather be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)
For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. Where can I go and meet with God? (Psalm 42:1,2)
For every living soul belongs to me, the father as well as the son - both alike belong to me. The soul who sins is the one who will die. (Ezekeil 18:4)
Do you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body. (1Corinthians 6: 19, 20)
The one sure thing we all know about life is that we will die someday. There is no avoiding it. We tend to push that fact to the back of our mind and try to not think about it.
Have you ever experienced the death of someone close to you; somone whom you love deeply? If you have you know first hand how fragile life is and you value your time of Grace; the time God has given you here on earth.
The day begins normally, We get up, get ready for work or school and expect to end the day by coming home in the evening to have dinner, relax and prepare for another day. But maybe God has other plans for our lives...
Back in October of 1958 , my family had a day like that. I was 8 years old, my brother was 3 and my sister was 11. It was a special day. It was grandpa's birthday. All the aunts and uncles, cousins and friends were coming to celebrate with him. The party was a success. About 8:00 in the evening my sister, brother and I were sent home (which was right next door) to prepare for bed. We got on our pajamas and were watching TV. Our father came home to check on us and make sure all was well. We said good night to him and that was the last time we ever saw him. God took him home suddenly just hours after we said our goodnights.
We hear often of people being killed in accidents, or unexpectedly from an unknown illness. We hear of many who die from disease or from other physical ailments. Death comes to people everyday, but do we really stop to think about what it means? What does it mean for the family of that person? More importantly what does it mean for the person himself? Our human reason asks, "How can someone be here one minute and gone in the next, never to be seen again?" It is beyond our comprehension.
Do you know that your soul and your body are two separate entities? Your soul can live without your body, but your body cannot live without your soul. Your body wears out with time and sometimes because of illness. Your soul never dies.
So what does that mean for human beings? It means that when the body can no longer live, no matter what the reason, the soul lives on without it. Where does the soul go when the body dies? Very simply, it goes to heaven or to hell.
God tells us all these things in his Holy Word. The five passages quoted at the beginning of this article are just a sample. There are many, many more passages in scripture where God tells us about the soul and the body. He wants us to know these things. They are important lessons for our salvation.
Very simply, when Christians die their body is buried in the ground and their soul goes to heaven to be with God. Non-Christians, those who do not believe in Jesus as their personal Savior from sin, will also be buried in the ground and their souls will go to hell. When Christ comes on the last day, the souls and bodies of Christians and non-Christians alike will be reunited.
The bodies and souls of all believers will live eternally in heaven, in the mansions prepared for us by Jesus where "the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." (Revelations 21:3,4)
The bodies and souls of unbelievers will live in torment forever in the fires of hell where "their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched." In other words their bodies will deteriorate forever. There will be no end to their suffering.
So, is death the beginning or the end? It is both...
For the believer it is the end of life as we know it here on earth, but the beginning of life in heaven with God.
For the unbeliever it is the end of life as we know it here on earth, but the beginning of life forever separated from God in the fires of hell.
We must always consider our life here on earth a gift from God. Use your time of Grace to make sure all people you meet have the chance to partake in the gift of heaven. Honor God with your body and your life. Take him at his word. He never breaks his promises. He never changes his mind. Remember, this life is "not all there is".
If anyone reading this article has questions or fears they would like to talk about or find answers for, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
By Kristeen - To God be the Glory!