Preparing To Die
Sure, this is not a pleasant subject by any means. True, some of us realize we are closer to this event than others might be, but we still have to keep in mind that God can end it all at any moment for anyone and everyone.
"Let us, then, talk about preparing to die. It is the greatest thing we have to do, and we have soon to do it, so let us talk and think something about it." (Charles Spurgeon). Mr. Spurgeon is right. The greatest thing we have to do in this life is to prepare to die, for that is precisely what we all are going to do (Hebrews 9:27). But also, realize that preparing to die is preparing to live.
The best thing we can do in this preparation is to seek God and make sure He is pleased with us. We can do this by learning what is pleasing to the Lord and doing those things. Luckily, this does not have to be a guessing game, for God has already told us what is pleasing to Him. He revealed to us in the Holy Scriptures exactly what pleases Him. So if we study the scriptures and apply what we learn to our everyday living, we will do those things that please Him.
One great benefit of preparing to die is in the fact that our living takes on new meaning and gives us a purpose for living. Sadly, many people see no farther than the grave. They do not realize there is a judgment coming (Hebrews 9:27) and an afterlife that is one of two destinies. The Bible speaks of these two destinies in several places (Romans 2:5-11).
Preparing to live not only covers the fulfilled life we can experience in our daily routine; but it also covers the fact that if we live a life pleasing to God, He will give us eternal life. This eternal life will be one of joy, peace, and happiness. It will be a life of glory, and we will be offering glory to God forever. Just thinking about heaven should motivate us to greater service towards God. "Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth" (Colossians 3:2).
There are several times in the New Testament where we are required to die and then we can live. Colossians 3:4 reads: "For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God". Later on in verse 5 we read that we should consider the earthly members of sinful flesh to be dead, and in verse10 we read that we are to put on the new self.
Our baptism is a symbol of the death, burial, and resurrection of the Christ. And for us, it is burying the old self of sin, and being raised to walk in newness of life (Romans 6:3-6).
Jesus said that He came to give life and life more abundantly (John 10:10). This means a fuller life. One that has meaning and purpose. It challenges us to do our very best and to help others do the same. It leads us to a life of service towards others, and helping them see the benefit of serving God and others in their own lives. This new life should be so encouraging and fulfilling that we spend time with each other helping each other get to heaven.
Our lives can be full and fulfilling, but only if we are prepared for the time when our bodies give up the spirit. Then the spiritual body will rise immortal to join Jesus and God in eternity, and we will be with Them forever.
So, take some time to think about dying. It is not a pleasant thought, but realize the end of life is actually a beginning for your destiny.
By Carey Scott
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