Everyone dies, regardless of religion, status in society, age, or gender. So, how do believers view Christian death? Here are seven biblical views about it.
Departure from the Physical Body
Death is not merely a state of rest or asleep. It also begins the journey of the spirit. In Acts 9:39, Apostle Paul wrote about Dorcas being dead, but her spirit was gone. This scripture also signifies that everyone consists of a physical body and a spiritual being.
The physical disintegrates while the spiritual being lives on and departs from the physical form. From that departure, the spirit will go to the promised land, the Heavens. This view leads us to the next one, the perfect reunion with God, Christ, and departed loved ones.
Reunion with the Loved Ones
Jesus mentioned in Matthew 8:11 that many would join Abraham, Jacob, and Isaac in their place in heaven. Also, Scriptures from the Old Testament talk about Abraham gathering with his people. This doesn’t denote physical interment, but a metaphorical reunion with his loved ones.
Perfect Reunion with Christ
Many Christians fear death, but Apostle Paul viewed death as a way to reunite with Christ. Paul even mentioned that he long to die to be with Christ. This desire stems from the fact that Christ offered the blissful experience of a paradise to the thief in the Crucifixion day (Luke 23:43).
Therefore, even if our physical body returns to dust, and our spirit departs from it, we shouldn’t fear death itself. Death reunites Christian believers to God the Father, Christ, and our loved ones.
State of Rest Like Sleep
The Bible cited numerous references on how Christians should view death. In 1 Thessalonians 4:14, the word sleep refers to the body’s state in death. Death is similar to sleep or a state of rest (Job 3:17), where the body can no longer feel pain.
Therefore, the body sleeps when it dies. Physically, a Christian who dies can now lie sleeping. When the body “sleeps,” it needs a place to rest. In the original text of the Scriptures, the word koimaomai is used to denote a place to lie down literally. This is the reason Christians put up cemeteries for their departed ones.
Return to the Dust
The body decomposes when it dies. In the Biblical view of Christian death, the physical body returns as dust. (Genesis 3:19). No matter how advanced our knowledge is, physical immortality is impossible. Even if a person spends a large sum of money, preserving the physical body, the body will decompose one way or another.
Agony for the Wicked
If the Bible shows Christian death as a blissful reunion with God, it is the opposite of people who rebel from God. People who lived wickedly despite professing the Christian faith would experience agony after death. The Bible explicitly mentions the concept of hell after death for those who don’t obey or believe in God. (Psalm 116:3, Matthew 22:13)
Death needs preparation
Many Christians believe that one can have a second chance after death. However, the Bible never talks about purgatory or salvation after death. Christ taught us to live our lives wholly and following the will of God. Although we can never fully understand the will of God in our lives, the Bible is our ultimate guide in preparing ourselves for death.
Christian death is part of our lives. We may never know when it will happen, so let’s prepare for it. At the end of our physical journey, we will be united with our loved ones, most notably, with Christ and God the Father.