Good morning, I’m at my third office off the road and have abstained from coffee although I had a hostess cupcake for breakfast… don’t judge me *said with a subtle laugh.
I received some heavy but celebratory news yesterday, my great aunt passed. It’s heavy because this great aunt is one I’ve had time with when visiting my grandma, and my grandma is an anchor to my life’s story. That’s why it’s heavy, but “how is it celebratory?” I’m excited to tell you about this part!
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18
13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as indeed the rest of mankind do, who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose from the dead, so also God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep through Jesus. 15 For we say this to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive, who remain, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore, comfort one another with these words.
If my great aunt has fallen asleep believing that Jesus died and rose from the dead—and I believe she has—so also God will bring my [great aunt] with Him [her] who has fallen asleep through Jesus! THAT… is exciting news!
Trying not to get emotional as I write this with a good crowd of people in front of me I can see the sun rising where the first day here is a vapor of smoke in the wind compared to the day my great aunt Faith is already having (considering the time difference between waking up from a dream here on earth to that of a life now in heaven). Therefore, comfort one another with these words.
However, my writing and your reading indicates we’re still here, “…we who are alive,” Paul said, “who remain…”. Ouch! Yep… still here. That’s what happens when you pinch yourself, don’t do that.
Listen, there’s too much information in the world, and everyone’s talking at once, so imma need everyone to shut the hell up for more than a few seconds. There are some things we gotta get sitchiated—situated, seriously—before we all start talking again. First of all, we need to understand something about the internet. Anyone can upload whatever. For example, do you know who the best writer in the world is?
It’s not my fault God made me the best writer in the world. I mean…what do you want from me? I’m like the Good Will Hunting of writing apart from the 12 brotha’s, but who’s counting—am I right!?
See, now, just because I used the internet to write an axiomatic truth about myself *as I laugh at my reflection in the screen* does not make it truth. So then how do I discern anything to be true that comes from the internet, especially from those of a “secular” position?
Allow me to offer an approach to not only discerning information from the internet, but from anyone or anything, everywhere.
If the objective is to gain knowledge for understanding the truth, then the approach for access is sharper than any two-edged sword; to access, you must face the meaning of death. And to face the meaning of death in light of the truth is to approach all information with not just your carnal perspective, but spiritual perspective.
The carnal perspective is a natural receptor for our objective, which need I say more when approaching information from this perspective; perhaps that it’s contingent on each and every person at their respective locations of background (upbringing)?
However, the spiritual perspective is not so natural for those carnally minded. Why? Because in order to have a spiritual perspective, the carnal intellect must die—hence the sharper than any two-edged sword (Hebrews 4:12).
And so if anyone reading this is not using both perspectives, then the only perspective being used…is carnal. To change that, I will present to you a question.
Do you really desire to come to the knowledge of the truth?
If you do. Then I mean to come to you as an ambassador, and so you must put your carnal intellect to death; in doing so will be an act of faith to trust in the God who makes you alive to the knowledge of the truth. That God is the Lord…
So they were saying to him, “How then were your eyes opened?” He answered, “The man who is called Jesus made mud, and spread it on my eyes, and said to me, ‘Go to Siloam and wash’; so I went away and washed, and I received sight.”
I pray our neighbors will have hearts’ genuine to the answers you’ve provided by sending the Holy Spirit to reveal the nature of your Word that makes our eyes see the miracle that you are; you’re seated at the right hand of the throne of God. I pray we are faithful in communicating the testimony of your work in us and the world. Please help us not use our ability through grace to see the world as an opportunity to sin by wrong motives and ideas, but for righteousness in serving the cause of your good news. In your Name, Jesus Christ. Amen.
But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. (Genesis 2:17)
The nature of death is quite difficult for me to contend with, not because of fear, or…at least, the fact it will happen in its finality one day, but rather because the experience of impending death distracts from its twofold nature—the nature of its physical process and spiritual process. So while the experience of death has a physical hold on me due the condemnation of man; how I choose to die is of another nature to death entirely. Observe…
The two biblical passages—of which there are more—presented, reveal two realities about death, at least, from my perspective. There is (1) a biological reality and (2) a spiritual reality of death. Lets proceed to understand the biological reality…
I don’t think it requires much explanation for understanding our biological experience of death, but the fact of its experience, is what is of interest to me, because the law of conservation of energy states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed – but can only be converted from one form of energy to another—of which, admittedly, am totally uneducated about. The only way that that makes sense to me as a human being of energy is that an eternal God (Father) [energy] exists outside our reality and is emitted as God (Son) [energy] inside our reality for emitting [energy] God (Holy Spirit)—LOGOS—to an eternal reality. It doesn’t make sense that life would randomly come into being only to evolve to death, intelligently—”the end”. How does that make any sense to anyone?
I can testify that I experience pain in the process of death, and that communicates something beyond the scientific resolve—it’s not a biological issue. Yes, biology is the study of life, the living, so how is death biological when the very definition contradicts. Death is not biological, it’s a consequence.
I can hear you smart people… “Don’t give me that! That’s not the definition!” Nonsense! I googled the study of death, and you’re correct, it’s the study of thanatology, but the point is… It’s a thanatological (Is that even a word?…) process of a biological reality (… It is a word! Yeahhh… I’m a stewpid smart person!!!). And that means the energy of death is a process of elimination; it will eventually conclude it’s purpose (converting into another form of consequence); whereas, the energy of biology will transcend (converting into another form of experience); we can see that, especially, in our Revelation 20:13-15 passage. That brings us to the second reality of deaths’ nature.
Since our Lord, Jesus Christ, is the propitiation of our sins, but not ours only, the entire worlds (1 John 2:2). We now have the spiritual reality to die a different death given by the Holy Spirit of God to help in our time of need. We can choose to die a death in faith by believing in Jesus Christ, entrusting Him with our soul by the Word of God. That may sound simple, but the discipline of change is not pleasant nor the process easy.
When death converts into another form, the reality will be—figuratively and literally—Hell (lake of fire). Death and Hades will be thrown into the lake of fire, the lake of fire is the second death (Revelation 20:13-15). That is a spiritual truth from a biblical God, and one not to be taken lightly as we see the world taking it. The consequence for neglecting the discipline of the Holy Spirit’s work in sanctification that saves and seals the believing soul is…a spiritual reality and of eternal significance.
If anyone reading this comes short of the fear of the Lord, then I pray you’ll consider this another plea for your souls’ salvation. I pray you’ll turn your mind and heart off to the world and “die” (For whoever wants to save his life will lose it; but…) for the sake of Christ the Lord (…whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.), our gift of salvation; Jesus, is the Savior of those in the world who might believe (John 3:16-20). Do not wait for the days where you will wish you could die, but cannot:
And in those days shall men seek death, and shall not find it; and shall desire to die, and death shall flee from them.