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After establishing that death is separation, we can now turn our attention to life, specifically spiritual life. Having a basic understanding of death will help us make sense of what spiritual life is.
Let’s start with Jesus Christ’s command to Nicodemus to be “born again.”
“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God….Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again” (John 3:3, 7).
There is a lot of misunderstanding about the phrase “born again.” Some people think of it in terms of membership in a religion or denomination: he is a born again, he is a Catholic, he is a Buddhist, etc. It is often used incorrectly as a label to identify a religious affiliation.
But let’s go back to the definition of spiritual death as separation from God. If I became separated from God through spiritual death, then in order to be reunited to Him, I...
Death is separation. Death is not annihilation or non-existence. It is not destruction in an absolute sense. At its core, physical death is separation, separation of the spirit and soul from the body. And spiritual death is separation of the human spirit from God’s Spirit.
This is a key concept that explains how death is used throughout the Bible. For example, what did Jesus mean when He said, “Let the dead bury their dead” (Luke 9:60)? We can be sure that He didn’t mean let the physically dead bury the physically dead. But letting the spiritually dead bury the physically dead makes perfect sense.
Consider this verse:
“And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1, emphasis added).
Someone was dead, but then made alive (quickened). They were spiritually dead (separated from God) and then made alive (united with God in spirit).
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him...
As part of a longer quote, Benjamin Franklin asserted that “nothing is certain except death and taxes.” The Bible tells us that we all have an appointment with death and that “we have the sentence of death in ourselves”; in other words, we are under a death sentence. We are all on death row.
Death is an unpleasant topic and most of us would prefer to postpone the thought of it as long as possible. Man’s fear of death is quite natural and reasonable and that fear can be a source of anguish, distress, and bondage. While death itself is certain, what happens afterward is quite uncertain to many people. The fear of death is the fear of the unknown.
But what if we can be certain about what is beyond this life? What if the certainty of death is matched with certainty about the other side of death? Would that remove our fears and give us a reason to live differently? This is what I want to demonstrate: God has given us enough information to know with certainty...
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