DEATH & LIFE
When people think or talk about death, I have discovered that there are a massive amount of other words and feelings that are connected. Let me help separate all of the side issues and put a frame around just the word death to give us an opportunity to truly understand.
This is a list of most of the words and feelings I have experienced attached to the word death perhaps you may have even more:
DEATH – fear, pain, murder, scared, killing, sickness, diseases, accidents, injustices, war, sorrow, life after death, confusion, resurrection, Easter, religion, church, funeral, casket, cremation, burial, graves, cemeteries, disasters, grief, mourning, darkness, unknown, loneliness, mortality, loss of life, pandemics, ambulances, chaos, firetrucks, earthquakes, explosions, police cars, screaming, powerlessness, helplessness, hopelessness and the end of the world, the end of everything.
Now let’s separate the word DEATH out of this list and let it stand alone. Even the dictionary defines death as; loss of life. So to define death one must first understand Life. What is life? Is life the opposite of death? When did life happen?
FIRST HUMAN LIFE HAPPENED WITH ADAM
The earliest record of the start of human life was verbally handed forward from generation to generation until it was written down. And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being (living soul). Genesis 2:7
***John speaking of creation describing Jesus as the Spoken Word that all things were made through Him…and in Him (Jesus) was Life. John 1:1-4
Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying. Everyone who lives in me and believes in me will never ever die. Do you believe this, Martha?” (John 11:25-26)
Jesus was recorded saying, I am the way, the truth and the life… John 14:1-6
When did death start?
FIRST HUMAN DEATH HAPPENED WITH THE SAME ADAM
But now Christ is risen from the dead and has become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so I Christ all shall be made alive. 1 Corinthians 15:20-22
Why did Adam die? And how exactly did that happen?
- Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it. And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, “Of every tree of the garden you may freely eat: but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die.” Genesis 2:15-17
- God made Eve to be Adam’s helper and wife. Genesis 2:21-25
- Satan tempted and deceived Eve to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Listen in to the conversation: The serpent said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?… You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:1-5
- As the serpent; known today as the devil or Satan causes mankind to have doubt and unbelief in God’s Word a war has been declared. Satan trying to recruit or deceive mankind away from Father God. Even though this war has been going on for thousands of years, Jesus; “Life Himself” is just about ready to end it once and for all!
- So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasing to the eyes, and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate. She also gave to her husband with her, and he ate.
- Then the eyes of both of them were opened.
- Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God.
- Then the Lord God called to Adam and said to him, “Where are you?” Genesis 3:6-9
Lord God, creator of everything including Adam and Eve, gave one command not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Even though they were deceived by Satan, they chose to disobey. This is called sin. When God gives a command and we “miss the mark.”
For the wages of sin is death… Romans 6:23
But wait a minute, Adam did not die until after he had many children and turned 930 years old. So what actually happened here?
SPIRITUAL DEATH LEADS TO PHYSICAL DEATH
When God breathed into Adam, he became a living being or soul. Where is your soul? What is your soul? We know that Adam’s body was made of the dust of the earth. We understand this now as the elements found in dirt are also the base of elements in our flesh bodies. When God breathed life into Adam it was God’s Life Spirit that gave physical life to Adam’s physical body. Even though this is a great mystery, God is revealing it to us through the written book of Genesis Chapter one and two! Let us take deeper look at those events.
IN THE BEGINNING GOD
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
- First day – God said, Let there be light and divided the light from the darkness:
- God called the light day and the darkness night.
- Second day – God said, Let there be a firmament (visible arch of the sky) separating atmosphere waters from the ground waters. – God called the firmament Heaven.
- Third day – God said, Let the waters under the heavens be gathered. – God called the dry ground earth and the gathered waters He called seas
- Continuing the third day – God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb that yields seed, and the fruit tree that yields fruit according to its kind, whose seed is in itself
- Fourth day – God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heavens to divide the day from the night; and let them be signs and seasons, and for days and years; and let them be for lights in the firmament of the heavens to give light on the earth. Then God made the Sun, moon and stars and set them in the firmament of heavens.
- Fifth day – God said, Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens. God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind.
- Sixth day – God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind.
CREATION OF MAN
This is an amazing jump in creation from: living plants, living trees, living water creatures, living winged birds and beasts of the field, to God creating man. Let us read this event carefully.
- Continuing the sixth day – Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the bids of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth. God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
- The Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.
- God gave Adam his mate Eve, and with their sexual union they were given the ability to produce “like kind” children.
Remember, to understand death we must first understand life! Not just plant and animal life but amazing human life.
BODY – We see God creating the body of man with the same pattern, out of the elements of the: ground, dust, dirt (common elements like the animals). But with man it is more than that.
SPIRIT – God breathed Himself into man or breathed His Spirit into man which caused a third thing to happen: man became. Man became the greatest of all God’s creation. God separated man from all other creatures in that God gave man the ability to “know” God and communicate with God Himself.
SOUL – Man became a living being (living soul). God made Adam in His Image.
That is the ability to: think, reason, communicate and create, this takes a mind or soul (sometimes called “the heart” of man). The soul of man is his: mind, will and emotions.
This is confirmed with the scripture verse written by John the apostle: Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:23
So what is this life of man that we have been given, and what is its purpose?
MANKIND – you and me; as we are offspring of Adam created in God’s image, let’s break it down.
- Adam had a physical body.
- God Breathed His Spirit into Adam.
- God’s image; the soul which is our mind, will and emotions.
- Adam had a face to face relationship with God.
- Adam disobeyed God’s instructions which separated him from the presence of God, remember Adam hid from God, because he felt shameful.
- Adam became spiritually disconnected or spiritually dead.
- God laid out the plan to be reconnected, but it will take a while; a few thousand years for Jesus to come on the scene to put things “legally” back in order.
- You and I are offspring of Adam and ‘like kind’ produces ‘like kind’, therefore we were born spiritually dead also. This is called our sin nature. It is our nature to sin (disobey God).
- Instead of living our lives according to the leading of the Spirit of God; our spirit is dead, we live our lives according to leading of our flesh. Working to feed, protect, shelter and gratify our physical bodies.
- The results of this spiritually dead lifestyle (without making a course correction) leads to physical death forever! We are born spiritually dead, working our whole life trying to stay physically alive and for some, even pampering our physical life but the Bible says: What will it profit a man to gain the whole world and loses his own soul? Mark 8:36
- Bad news; The wages of sin is death… Romans 6:23
- Good news; The wage of sin is death, BUT the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
WHAT HAVE WE DISCOVERED SO FAR?
Human life – my life your life, has an amazing physical beginning; at physical birth from our mother’s womb. Once birthed; the natural order of things is physically and mentally developing from a baby to an adult. We are born spiritually dead, meaning that we have no direct input from our creator. We are raised, educated, and programed primarily by the group of people around us and what they believe. We base all of our belief according to our five senses or our five input sensors; touch, taste, sound, smell, and sight. This is how we process physical information. Nothing spiritual here. Unfortunately most of this “raising” is how to survive physically and mentally in this physical world because most of our parents were spiritually dead when they raised us. If they were not seeking God and Truth, they had little to offer us about the spirit.
I was fortunate I suppose, my mom was not a God follower but not a God rejector. She leaned toward the idea of reincarnation and multiple lives and was also an intellectual; putting a lot of stock in her own reasoning ability. The good news for me, fourth child in the family, is that she did not directly put her beliefs on me. She let me struggle with eternal things on my own. Even though my baby sister died when I was four years old, and I saw my dog get run over by a car at age five; she never talked about death and what happens. But I did have a God loving, Jesus following, Holy Ghost filled Grandmother and Aunt loving me, influencing me and praying for me…but that is my story, we are talking about you. That is unless you can recognize some God followers in your life!
We also know that we were born into a war zone and we have the same enemy that Adam and Eve were conquered by; Satan and his kingdom of darkness. All of us were born into this kingdom of darkness by default. God gave Adam dominion over the earth when Adam chose the way of Satan in the garden; he actually, “legally” gave that dominion (of the garden, world) over to Satan when he disobeyed God. That is why scripture says:
But even if our gospel (good news) is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them. 2 Corinthians 4:3-4
DEATH OF JESUS
The crucifixion of Jesus was a part of God’s plan. The sin of mankind would require a sacrifice. God brought His son Jesus (a perfect man with no sin) into the world to sacrifice His one Holy Life in exchange for all of our spiritually dead lives. In time you will learn this was a “legal” agreement to literally buy back all mankind, and the earth from Satan. Remember, Adam “legally” gave away the title deed of the earth when he disobeyed God and followed the serpent Satan.
And He (Jesus) bearing His own cross, went out to a place called the Place of a Skull, which is called in Hebrew, Golgotha, where they crucified Him…John 19:17-18
RESURRECTION OF JESUS FROM THE DEAD
What Satan; the enemy, our enemy did not count on was:
…Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve. After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once… 1 Corinthians 15:3-8
This was accomplished about two thousand years ago, giving mankind opportunity to accept what Jesus had done for them. We now can understand this has been a war of two kingdoms: Satan’s kingdom of darkness and Jesus’ Kingdom of Light.
He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:13
GOD IS TRYING TO GET OUR ATTENTION!
Even though we are born spiritually dead God wants us to accept His Love and He is constantly trying to get our attention through several ways.
NATURE – the amazing beauty of nature; majestic landscapes, morning sunrises and evening sunsets. Nature itself testifies of the greatness of God; planets, moons, stars and galaxies!
WRITTEN WORD – God also gave us His written Word. His written account of His creation, history, and original design for mankind. You have at your fingertips the oldest written documents in the world that have been translated into your language! We have to make the effort to read it, to search for ourselves.
MIRACLES – If we think about it, we have all seen miracles. Witnessed the supernatural. That is, we have seen or experienced things that are beyond the natural; Super-Natural if you will. This makes us ask questions, God likes your questions. Your questions are the start of your path to Him!
QUESTIONS – This may sound like cheating, but our Loving God planted within each one of us questions: Where did I come from, why am I here, and what happens when I die? I know you have at least thought about these things in your mind because you are reading this article.
PREACHERS – People like me who have witnessed the love and acceptance of God, and who have experienced firsthand becoming spiritually alive by simply believing God’s very patience plan to restore mankind back to Him through the acts of Jesus, His Son. Plus receiving Jesus personally into our lives as Savior, Lord and King! OK, I know that there are a lot of misinformed “preachers” talking today – that are motivated by greed and use religion to “control” and take advantage of people, but as a treasure hunter, we might have to dig through a lot of “fools gold” to get to the real thing. Today I hope I become a trusted voice for you, in this very fragile world.
ALLOW ME TO BRING IT HOME FOR YOU
- Life is physical and spiritual.
- We have physical life when we were born from our mother’s womb.
- Our major reasoning information comes from those around us and our five senses.
- With this reasoning we understand all things stop living (plants animals and people) and this is our understanding of death. We usually follow the thinking that natural death is when a person grows old, to a certain undetermined age, and their human functions (heart, lungs, minds) just stop.
- If a person stops living earlier than that undetermined age, we say they died before their time. We say if a person is murdered or in a life taking accident that it is a tragedy.
- ETERNITY – some kind of life after death. Even though I have had a few people tell me that their understanding of death is just a “dirt nap”. One lives, one dies and that is it. It is actually a philosophy from the days of Rome; Eat, drink and be merry for tomorrow we die. But I have personally interviewed thousands of people, mainly in the USA, and I would say 90% believe in some kind of “afterlife” and most call it some form of heaven. And many believe there are rules to get there. What you do in this life determines the next life sort of thing.
BUT WHAT ABOUT YOU?
I hope the things you have just read make some sense. I hope they have answered some of your questions. I have used the Bible and my personal experience in writing this article as my foundation and believe everything I have written. I have used the Word of God recorded in the Bible as my reference of Truth and here is what I know. The Bible itself says that it is alive, it will mess with your life, and it demands action:
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of, soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account. Hebrews 4:12-13
TO OVERCOME DEATH, HOW DO WE BECOME SPIRITUALLY ALIVE?
How do we become spiritually alive, so we can know God and be “reconnected” with Him? Truth says…without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is… Hebrews 11:6
Can you see how the Bible helps you to answer and decide?
– Do you believe that God is? Yes, No?
Even though we were born spiritually dead Truth says … the gift of God is eternal life (spiritual life) in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
– Do you believe that YOU can have spiritual life, eternal life in Jesus? Yes, No?
When Jesus was killed on our behalf, so that we could be restored to God, God raised Him from the dead after three days in the grave and Truth says …the power which He (God) worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, far above all principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also int that which is to come. Ephesians 1:20-21
– Do you believe that God raised Jesus from the dead? Yes, No?
The journey I just took you through was a process, like when a baby is born. In this case born again. Not physical life but spiritual life. By your simple act of believing it is like taking your first breath, God breathing the life of His Spirit into YOU. Yes YOU personally! You are being born again; spiritually!
Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 1 John 4:15
If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9
– Right now Father God is talking to you personally through His Words that you have just read. You entered the conversation when you answered YES! Now just take a moment and speak out loud, directly to Jesus with your answers:
I do believe in God.
I do believe God raised you from the dead.
I confess with my mouth out loud; Jesus, you are my Lord and Savior.
By faith I accept Spirit Life from Father God.
I am spiritually alive in you Jesus!
Friend in Christ, you have one amazing and exciting path ahead. I pray that our Lord will bring true followers of Jesus into your life to help you along the way.
I would also be honored if I could be one of those trusted voices in your life in this fragile world.