“If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater; for this is the testimony of God which He has witnessed about His Son. He who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given concerning His Son. And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” 1st John 5:9-13
Certainly there is a certain amount of prudence in keeping up with the news. For myself there is a limit, as there is no end to the amount of information that is readily available in print and online (Ecc. 12:12). One thing seemingly prevails from time to time and that is the amount of uncertainty regarding events that are taking place in the United States and throughout the entire world. Quite simply, these words often come to mind.
“And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of travail.” Matthew 24:6-8
There are many different takes on events, yet there are events that send a good portion of Americans into differentiating states of frenzy. The recent stock market events of the past week have done just that. There are some who say this is finally it, the market is going to totally collapse by the end of the year, others who say it is simply a correction and I am sure a variety of different opinions in that regard.
I would ask where are those who would think that the sky is the limit in regards to the amount of returns being yielded? Should we discuss the plunge protection team, hyper frequency trading or just keep it simple? Such complexity really simply shows the uncertainty of that particular situation. Yet what about the uncertainty about those who lives have been altered regarding the volcanic eruption in the Philippines?
What about the uncertainty for those living in economic chaos in Venezuela? What about the uncertainty regarding unrest in the Middle East? What about the uncertainty for those who were affected by the recent earthquake in Taiwan? What about the uncertainty for those involved in recent near skirmishes on the India and China borders? What about the uncertainty regarding the outcome of the final resolution about North Korea? Really, what about the uncertainty regarding things in your own life?
In all reality the list could continue and go on for quite some time. I’m certain there are probably many things going on in the world, in local municipalities, in countries and other places that many, including myself, are not aware of. One of the things out there are a great uncertainty about what happens after a person dies, where one goes after they are dead.
Truly there are many books written about such subjects. There are many different theories out there, some quite bizarre. Many people hold their own thoughts regarding what will happen to them after they die, also regarding what has happened to those who have died. This should not be this way, there should be certainty regarding the outcome of what happens when a person dies.
“In Him also we have been assigned to an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who previously trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. In whom also, after you heard the Word of Truth, the gospel of your salvation, in whom also, believing, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.” Ephesians 1:11-14
Obviously for many, unless they see the time of their death drawing near, these sort of thoughts are only occasional. Often times, simply due to the uncertainty of what will happen to them, they often disregard spending too much thought on the matter. Can you blame them? Is not the thought of death discontenting, discomforting when there is no certainty in the matter of what will be?
There may be hope. There may be wishes regarding what happens when you die, but unless one truly knows what happens then there is also a measure of uncertainty. This should be a cause of great concern. Perhaps the depression of thinking on the matter should be evidence of something not being right?
“But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, prostitutes, 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
In a moment, man will take their last breath and upon that moment they are gone. Whether suddenly and unexpectedly or with the knowledge that soon, at any moment death is upon oneself, the time will come for each person, with the only exception of those who are true Christians, those who have repented (Acts 17:30-31, 2:38) and by faith believed into Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (Acts 16:31) and who are alive when the Lord comes to take those Believers to be with Him (1 Thes. 4:16-17). So death is all but guaranteed and thus far, for every generation since the beginning of Creation their travels upon this earth, this foreign land, has been ended by death. (With the exceptions of Enoch (Gen. 5:24) and Elijah (2 Kings 2:11) )
“For all this I took to heart, in order to explain it: that the righteous and the wise and their works are in the hand of God. No man knows, whether by love or hatred, all that is before them. All happens alike to everyone; there is one event to the righteous and to the wicked; to the good and to the clean, and to the unclean; to him who sacrifices, and to him who does not sacrifice. As is the good, so is the sinner. He who swears is as he who fears an oath. This is an evil among all things that are done under the sun, that there is one event to all. Yea, also the heart of the sons of men is full of evil, and madness is in their heart while they live, and after that they go to the dead. For whoever is chosen, of all those living, there is confidence; for a living dog is better than a dead lion. For the living know that they shall die; but the dead do not know anything, nor do they have any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, have now perished; nor do they ever any longer have a part in anything that is done under the sun. Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart; for God has already accepted your works. Let your garments always be white; and let your head lack no ointment. Look on life with the wife whom you love all the days of your vain life, which He has given you under the sun, all the days of your vanity. For that is your share in this life, and in your labor which you labor under the sun. Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might; for there is no work nor reasoning nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheol where you go. I returned and saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor yet bread to the wise, nor yet riches to men of understanding, nor yet favor to men of skill; but time and chance happens to them all. For man also does not know his time; as the fish that are taken in an evil net, and as the birds that are caught in the snare; so are the sons of men snared in an evil time, when it falls suddenly upon them. This wisdom I have seen also under the sun, and it seemed great to me.” Ecclesiastes 9:1-13
I recall a man whom I had befriended years ago. We became fairly good friends and were involved with a local website. We went back and forth on a lot of political topics, eventually he allowed me to co-operate the website with him. Suddenly I then received a phone call from a mutual friend that this buddy had just found out he had lung cancer. He wasn’t very old, but I knew that in nearly every case it was a death sentence.
By the time his cancer was caught it was already full blown. In a very short period of time he found himself in a hospice. I clearly recall one night during a weekly Bible study at my family’s home, I excused myself for a few minutes, the Holy Spirit laid it on my heart to send this man an email message regarding Salvation.
We had talked before regarding this, he was Mormon, to which I knew that this was for certain an incorrect path to Biblical Salvation. I sat in my office, taking the time to write what was upon my heart and sent it off his way. Then we continued our activities that night. A few days later I received a call from this mutual buddy, that he had died.
While I will never know until I get to Heaven, what I heard described to me was none the less remarkable and inspired me to ensure to listen to the Holy Spirit, when such a burden is laid upon my heart (1 Cor. 2:13). This friend had called a pastor so that he could be Baptized before his death. The hospice told him that by doing so, he would die shortly thereafter. Yet he insisted and was baptized, then died later that day.
While it is impossible for me to know his heart, to know whether or not he truly listened to what I had told him, that he must repent, that he must by faith believe into Jesus Christ, that Salvation was simple and unfortunately the Mormon church was a deception. I pleaded that he not trust into the Mormon church, but that he would trust in Jesus Christ.
“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under Heaven given among men that is required for us to be saved.” Acts 4:12
“Jesus said to him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6
Dear reader, understand the seriousness of the situation for we are all going to face such a time and we do not know when that is. Have you ever been in a situation where your life flashed before your eyes? Certainly I have, I have been in situations where death was at the door, where literally through various means my life could have been ended, sometimes in a sudden event, others in events that involved those who sought my life. The Bible clearly tells us what happens after this life, the Word of God makes it so there is no uncertainty and God has went through much care to ensure that each individual would know what is required of them. Truly each individual should clearly understand the choice that is set before them, that includes you.
“The Lord is not slow concerning His promise, as some count slowness, but is longsuffering toward us, not purposing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” 2nd Peter 3:9
“Do I delight with pleasure in the death of the wicked? says the Lord Jehovah, and not that he should turn back from his ways and live?” Ezekiel 18:23
The Holy Scriptures clearly teach that there is an afterlife. We are told with certainty, that our Creator has provided a clear opportunity to repent and accept Jesus Christ as our Savior, through faith. We know without any doubt that there is a Hell (Matt. 25:46) and there is a Heaven (John 14:2-3). We can be assured with certainty that those who repent and believe into Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior have their name written in the Book of Life (Luke 10:20). Likewise we can be assured with certainty that those whose names are not written in the Book of Life will be cast into the Lake of Fire for eternity (Rev. 20:15).
“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many entering in through it. Because narrow is the gate and distressing is the way which leads unto life, and there are few who find it. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them from their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree produces excellent fruit, but a corrupt tree produces evil fruit. A good tree is not able to produce evil fruit, nor is a corrupt tree able to produce excellent fruit. Every tree that does not produce excellent fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore from their fruits you will know them. Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many works of power in Your name? And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who work out lawlessness!” Matthew 7:13-23
“Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life. He who believes into Me, though he may die, he shall live. And everyone living and believing into Me shall never ever die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26
“And as it is appointed for men to die once, and after this the judgment, so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, without sin, unto salvation.” Hebrews 9:27-28
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 6:23
There are no doubts. There are no mistakes regarding God’s truth. There is absolutely an afterlife and the choice of whether or not one will go to Heaven or Hell is quite simply about whether or not one truly accepts the free gift of Salvation (John 3:16) that God has provided to all of mankind. That free gift which is only available through Jesus Christ, of which there is no other name of which to be Saved.
“In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” 1st John 4:10
While our world is full of uncertainties, our individual lives do not have to be in regards to what our future ultimately holds for us. We can be certain that no matter the conditions that we walk upon in this world, whether good or bad, that if we have believed into Jesus Christ we will walk on streets of gold (Rev. 21:21). We can be certain that when we take our last breath, whether suddenly or expectedly, our next known moment will be in the Lord’s presence (2 Cor. 5:8). Just as we can be certain about these things, we can also be certain that if we refuse to yield, refuse to repent before our Creator that we have nothing to look forward to except the Great White Throne judgment, of which every heart who does not know Christ as their Savior should fail in regards to thoughts of that horrific day!
“And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them. 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, out of the things which were written in the books. And 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 their works. And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire.” Revelation 20:11-15
We know for certainty that every man will stand before Jesus Christ and we will either have Him be our Judge or our Savior. We can be absolutely certain, for the Bible says so, that every knee will bow before Him (Phil. 2:9-11). Certainly you can brush off such an idea as just that, an idea or a theory. Please do understand that these things are certain, they are no theory.
“No, rather, O man, who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, Why have you made me like this? Does not the potter have authority over the clay, from the same lump to make one vessel unto honor and another unto dishonor?” Romans 9:20-21
Are you going to put your trust into your own thoughts regarding what will happen to you after you die or are you going to put your trust into Jesus Christ (Pr. 3:5)? Are you going to put your trust into the thoughts of others about how one is Saved or are you going to put your trust into what the Bible clearly teaches regarding Salvation (Acts 17:11)? Do you want the certainty of your ultimate future or do you want to gasp at the last moments of your life, with fear taking over, not knowing whether or not you are right or wrong?
“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep His commandments; for this is for every man. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.” Ecclesiastes 12:13-14