How long do you want to live? How long do you think you’ll live? Probably, all of us will want to say “Forever!” Isn’t it amazing that there’s something in us that craves for infinity. It’s because God has set eternity in our hearts (Eccl 3:11). But as much as we want to live here forever and be with our loved ones forever, we can’t. We cannot deny the fact that death is inevitable. It is certain to come, we just don’t know when (Eccl 8:7-8).
When I was still much younger, I was afraid to die. Blame my poor young mind that imagined my dead and decaying body to be eaten by worms and insects. But now, as a young adult, I could not help but laugh at such absurd thought. How can I feel anything creeping and crawling within me when I’m already dead-supposedly not feeling anything? 🙂
Anyway and praise God that as I came to know Christ, my view on death gradually changed. I’m taking hold of Paul’s bold declaration, “To live is Christ and to die is gain.”
I remember the latest book I’ve read entitled The Timekeeper by Mitch Albom. One of the main characters in the book named Victor was already dying due to a deadly disease. He was old, rich and dying, but there’s one thing he wanted. It’s not the love or company of his family. What he desired was immortality. Since Victor was the type of person who wanted control over everything, he was willing to do whatever it takes for him to beat death. For me, what Victor did was like aimlessly beating the air, wasting all your energy for futility.
The psalmist is really right in saying that man, despite his riches, does not endure. Our wealth, wisdom and works are not enough to, or rather, cannot purchase eternity.
“No man can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for him-the ransom for a life is costly, no payment is ever enough-that he should live on forever and not see decay. For all can see that wise men die; the foolish and the senseless alike perish and leave their wealth to others. Their tombs will remain their houses forever, their dwellings for endless generations, though they had named lands after themselves. But man, despite his riches, does not endure. He is like the beasts that perish.”-Psalm 49:7-12
For Victor, death was certainly an unwelcome visitor. It’s like a thief in the night. It came to steal, kill, and destroy all of Victor’s desires. But more than that, death is the wages of sin (Rom 6:23).
Death may be the end of life. We should have died as punishment for all our sins. But God, out of His unconditional love and abounding grace, gave His Son Jesus Christ, to die on the cross and save us from our sins. Thankfully, it did not end there, because Jesus Christ conquered death! He was able to defeat the grave and was raised to life. Because of this good news of salvation, we can have the ultimate gift-the gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
For God’s children, death is the key that unlocks the door to eternity-the key, that is given by Jesus Christ.
“But God will redeem my life from the grave; He will surely take me to Himself.”-Psalm 49:15