Tonight is our FaithPoint Wednesday gathering. I look forward to seeing you there.
Here are the notes from Sunday’s sermon:
This is week 6 in our 1689 Doctrine and Devotion series. The title of this sermon is: What Happens When You Die?
Death. The cessation of life. Does the word death weird you out? Should it?
You are surrounded by it. You can’t get away from it.
TV shows and movies are built on it.
Zombie shows, vampire shows, police shows: CSI and NCIS are built around death. Horror movies, action movies, dramas, video games. People even die in cartoons.
Heart attacks, war, car accidents, murders, tornadoes and hurricanes, cancer and other diseases, self-induced or self-inflicted deaths, are heard about a lot.
- You do not become an angel when you die.
- You are not a lost soul wandering. You cannot travel back and forth into different dimensions.
- You can’t talk to dead people.
The Bible makes it clear that there are two types of people. There are those that love, trust, follow and serve Jesus and He is their Lord, Savior, and Redeemer King. Then there are those who have not followed Jesus. They have no intention or desire to follow Jesus. So, there are those who will be with Jesus for all eternity and there are those who will endure God’s wrath and be away from Jesus for all eternity.
Death is not a punishment for Christians. Death does not mean God is exacting revenge or taking out His anger on you. He is not punishing you. He punished Jesus in your place. God poured out all of His wrath that was meant for us and took it out on Jesus instead. Death is not punishment.
There is no condemnation for those that are in Christ! The price for our sins has been paid by Jesus. As a Christian, you do not need to fear death because you are free from the penalty of sin.
Death is a result of the fall. It is a reality for all people that live in this fallen world. Jesus defeated death when He rose from the dead. However, death will not be permanently destroyed until Jesus returns.
1 Corinthians 15:20-28
Obedience to God is more important than preserving your own life.
24 But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
4 “I tell you, my friends, do not fear those who kill the body, and after that have nothing more that they can do. 5 But I will warn you whom to fear: fear him who, after he has killed, has authority to cast into hell.[a]Yes, I tell you, fear him! 6 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies?[b]And not one of them is forgotten before God. 7 Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows.
Fight the good fight
Finish the race
Keep the faith
Jesus said in Revelation 2:10 – Be faithful unto death
11 And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death.
There will be great rejoicing in Heaven for those believers who loved not their lives unto death. This is something that we as the church need to have burned into our mind. If we are willing to give up our lives for faithfulness to God, then we will not have a problem giving up anything else for the sake of Christ. If you give up your life, you walk in freedom rather than slavery.
Jesus told us to die to our self
For Christians, death is a door to be with Jesus and the completion of our sanctification.
21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. 23 I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.
13 And I heard a voice from heaven saying, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.” “Blessed indeed,” says the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labors, for their deeds follow them!”
15 Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints.
For Christians, their souls go immediately into God’s presence.
Philippians 1:23 –
43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
23 and to the assembly[a] of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
The souls of unbelievers go immediately into eternal punishment.
22 The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side.[f] The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. 24 And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’27 And he said, ‘Then I beg you, father, to send him to my father’s house— 28 for I have five brothers—so that he may warn them, lest they also come into this place of torment.’ 29 But Abraham said, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them hear them.’ 30 And he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if someone goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’31 He said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone should rise from the dead.’”
After this life is over, there will not be another opportunity to hear the gospel and trust in Jesus as your Lord and Savior.
Matthew 25:41, 46
41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.
46 And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Death is inevitable. The Bible says that death comes for every person. We are not promised that Jesus will come back during our lifetime. We pray for that but we are not promised it. Therefore, we must assume that we will all die on this earth.
Is your soul at peace?
Do you rest with joy in the arms of your Shepherd?
Are you being conformed more and more into the image of Jesus or the image of yourself?
If you are not being conformed to the image of Jesus, why?
This is the most important decision that everyone on this planet will make.
If you are not a Christian or you call yourself a Christian but your life doesn’t look like Jesus, I invite you to stop running and give your life to Jesus today?
If you are a Christian, pray and reach out. Pray for your kids, your neighbors, co-workers, family, and friends. Pray for them. Then reach out. Share the gospel, share your story but make sure to talk about Jesus in your story. Pray and reach out. There are people that belong in Jesus’ flock that are not there yet and our heart is to pray and reach out.
What response is the Holy Spirit urging you to make today?