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Devotionals 2011 - 2012

A Short Death
January 19, 2011By Ed Wrather

And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment. - Hebrews 9:27 NKJV.

So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.’” - Luke 16:22-25 NKJV.

And Jesus said to him (the thief on the cross), “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” - Luke 23:43 NKJV.

So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. - 2 Corinthians 5:6-8 NKJV. 

The students were made to write a will, put on burial clothes, and then they were made to climb into a casket. The casket was then buried under floorboards. Sounds like a kidnapping, or one of those scary movies, doesn't it? However, this is just part of a course at Rende Medical College in Taiwan. Professors at the college claim that doing this gives their students a better appreciation of life. Qiu Daneng, a professor at the college, says, “Although it's just ten minutes, the effect is equal to real death.” Xiao Lin, a student, says: “I felt like I was reborn when I came out and now I know that every second counts in life.” (Orange News, Global News, and various other news venues December 17, 2010.)

I would have a problem taking a course where I had to be buried alive. There is always the possibility that they might forget you were down there! Ten minutes could stretch into a living nightmare, until you actually did die. Since we are already there, let us take a minute to talk about...death. We do not like to talk about death, or even to think about death. It is something that most people avoid. You know, maybe if we pretend it's not real, then it won't be real. Out of sight, out of mind is what we think.

When I was 14 years old at a church camp I was thinking about death, and what would happen to me after I died. It was five years before I remember seriously contemplating again the same thing; death, and what would happen after I died. Maybe you have never seriously considered it, or maybe you just don't know what is going to happen. The Bible makes it clear as to what happens immediately after death.

What is it that happens after death? Death, itself, will only be momentary. It will be a short death. As we see with the Rich Man and Lazarus in the Gospel of Luke. Lazarus is carried by angels to Abraham's bosom (Heaven) while the Rich Man is taken to Hades (Hell). Lazarus is comforted, while the Rich Man is tormented, and speaks of a desire for water while being tormented in a flame.

Jesus says to the thief who believed on Him while on the cross, that he would be with Him in Paradise (Heaven) that very day. The apostle Paul says that for the believer to be absent from the body (physically dead), means that you would be present with the Lord. The important thing for the believer to know is that, after death, we will be with the Lord Jesus Christ, and wherever Jesus is at is going to be Heaven. For the believer, it will be a very short momentary death, because we have eternal life through Jesus. For the nonbeliever in Jesus, it will be a living nightmare that will never end.

If you have never asked Jesus to forgive you of your sins, come into your heart and life and be your Savior, I hope you will do so now before it is eternally too late.

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