DEATH AND LIFE
A glance at the world we live in and the day to day reality we know will show us very quickly that human existence is broken. Death and misery are twin curses that certainly did not make it onto the list of observations that caused Louis Armstrong to sing “What a Wonderful World” in his 1967 hit song by the same name. And yet despite the clear evidence to the contrary the prevailing philosophies in our culture would explain death, and the resulting misery, as a natural part of life. Death is normal. Or worse yet, the pain we experience when a loved one dies or as we approach our own death is an illusion or weakness; it is a feeling that must be mastered, subdued before our internal human strength and fortified will to press on. But if we are being honest with ourselves each one of us knows death is not natural and the misery we endure is far from an illusion.
The next obvious question then is “why?” Why is death an ever present intruder in our lives? Why do pain and misery slowly eat away at our happiness like a cancer from the inside out? (For many of us, sadly, it is literally cancer that does this). If death is not normal than why are things abnormal, broken? The Bible tells us that sin entered the world through one man and so death through sin (Rom.5:12). Adam, the first man, who was created by God and declared to be good sinned against God and brought death into the world, not just physical death but spiritual death for every person. In a word, the brokenness is our own fault. This answers the question but thankfully it is not the end of the story. The good news is that God did not leave us here. He promised to save His people through a Redeemer and that Redeemer is Jesus Christ, God’s only Son.
When the fullness had come God sent His Beloved Son into the world to die an accursed death on the cross, the death we should have died. He himself bore our sins on His body on the tree (1 Peter 2:24). And because He was the Son of God death could not hold Him. He was powerfully raised from the grave so that all who would believe in Him might have life and have it abundantly, eternally. This is who we worship and adore, Christ our Risen Savior. This is what it means for Jesus to be the resurrection and the life. A quick glance at the world today will show us death is all around. But if we look to the Son and believe in Him then we know that though we die yet shall we live. To God be the glory through Jesus Christ our Lord!