Daily Bread #17
When you live in a world in which you see death having the last word over a person’s life, it is almost futile to entertain the thought of life beyond the grave or living in eternal bliss. One of the first persons who ask about life after death on record is Job. “If a man dies, will he live again?” (14:14). Our experience teaches us that the afterlife is not only a question in our hearts, it is a desire also. And yes another question that goes alongside our desire for living eternally is why do we all share this desire to begin with? The few who have chosen death over life are those who find themselves in crises and they would rather escape the hardship than face a dreadful difficulty. I have never heard of anyone choosing death over life because life here is too wonderful for him.
But if the desire for life is something we share in humanity, where did we all get this desire from? “He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart” (Ecc. 3:11 ESV). The desire for eternity is placed in us by the Creator. Death on the other hand brought fears in us because we were held captive by it in that we did not know if we could overcome it (Heb. 2:14-15). And so what God has promised in the prophets, Daniel 12:1-2, has become a reality in Jesus.
Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself
likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might
destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and
deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong
slavery (Heb. 2:14-15 ESV).
Obedience to God frees us from death. Death does not threaten us, death does not fear us, death does not terrorize us, and death has no power over us. The fact that we are in Christ, we have already been delivered from death. Paul’s victory song, 1Corinthians 15:54-57 is one for the ages. Christians don’t have to wait till they get to the “after a while” to chant “Thanks be to God who gives us the victory.” We should sing it even today with full assurance that He who has brought life and immortality to us will see to it that we get it ultimately. And so, even if circumstances (Not overcoming temptation, obeying the desires of the flesh, sickness, financial difficulties, brake down in relationships, doubt because of unanswered prayer, persecution, etc.) cause me to deny Him today, I don’t have to throw in the towel forever. The devil may (only in appearance) win today, but be assured the victory will be mine tomorrow.
So many of God’s faithful servants remind us of the highs and lows they had while living and serving Him: Abraham, Moses, David, Jeremiah, and even Peter, but they did not give in. They found a way to get over a day’s battle in which they suffered defeat and continued fighting the war which they eventually won (2Tim. 4:7-8). You have victory today because it has been given to you.
- If we live in view of the negative messages that enter our hearts, then we are twice defeated (in this life and the life to come).
- Satan still has the power to shake death in our faces, but we don’t have to be taunted by it because it has no power over God’s people.
- Victory is ours because God has already given it to us.
- May we conduct/live our lives in view of this victory.
The Beltway Church of Christ is located in the Washington, DC metropolitan area in Prince George’s County, MD near Joint Base Andrews.