I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after your body has been killed, has authority to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him. Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
The anxiety of death is one of the deepest fears known to man. Billions of dollars are spent each year on medication and treatment to preserve life. Police officers are hired to protect citizens from bad guys. Firefighters risk their own lives to save the lives of others. We teach our children from the time they are very young to call 911 in case of an emergency. Homes and offices are outfitted with security alarms to notify authorities of a break-in. All these things are great. But if our focus is only on the protection of the physical body, we have missed the most important means of security.
We will all die. Some will be taken at a young age; others will pass peacefully in their beds after many full years. Some will die tragically at the hands of another, or from a disease, or in an accident. The question is: “What then?” The second after we close our eyes in death, what then?
While we will all die physically, we don’t have to die eternally. Today’s passage makes it clear that the heavenly Father is in charge of eternity. He sent His Son to provide life after death. Through Jesus you can pass from death to life. With Jesus you will never die. God loves you so much that He sent His Son to take away the fear of death. If you want to have your eternity in heaven, I invite you to make the following prayer your own and trust in Jesus as the only One who can usher you from death to eternal life.
Lord Jesus, I am afraid to die. This fear presses on my heart like a heavy boulder. Nothing in this life relieves the weight. After I close my eyes in death, I don’t know where I will spend eternity. So right now I am trusting in You alone as the only way to have a relationship with God forever. Take away my fear and replace it with Your peace. In Your name I pray. Amen.
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