Do You Have Hope In Death?
Do You Have Hope in Death? “The wicked is thrust down in his evil-doing; But the righteous hath a refuge in his death” (Proverbs 14:32). Do you have a refuge in your death, a hope in death? All mankind stands on equal ground. (1) There is a Creator responsible for our existence. The Apostle Paul said, concerning God, “The God that made the world and all things therein, he, being Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; neither is he served by men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he himself giveth to all life, and breath, and all things” (Acts 17:24-25), and “for in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain even of your own prophets have said, For we are his offspring. Being then the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and device of man” (Acts 17:28-29). The Apostle Peter said, concerning the world within which we live, “seeing that these things are thus all to be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy living and godliness (2 Peter 3:11). (2) Mankind stands responsible before him: The Apostle Paul so affirmed, saying “And as he reasoned of righteousness, and self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was terrified” (Acts 24:25). (3) No matter how secretive an individual may be in life, no matter how cautious an individual is concerning sin, the Hebrew writer assures us that “there is no creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and laid open before the eyes of him with whom we have to do” (Hebrews 4:13). (4) The Apostle Paul revealed that, “we must all be made manifest before the judgment-seat of Christ; that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (2 Corinthians 5:10). (5) This judgment will occur after death: “And inasmuch as it is appointed unto men once to die, and after this cometh judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). All of these factors should cause mankind to stop life long enough to ask and answer the question, “Do I have hope in death?” The Apostle Paul, on numerous occasions, encouraged the brethren to, “Awake, thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead and Christ shall shine upon thee” (Ephesians 5:14); “And this, knowing the season, that already it is time for you to awake out of sleep: for now is salvation nearer to us than when we first believed. The night is far spent, and the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk becomingly, as in the day; not in reveling and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and jealousy. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provisions for the flesh, to fulfill the lusts thereof.” (Romans 13:11-14) and “Awake to soberness righteously, and sin not” (1 Corinthians 15:34). What will it take to awaken mankind to soberness? How many times have you heard parents, teachers, or friends say, “When are you going to wake up?!?” Now is a good time! Whatever the case may be with the world; whatever mankind decides to do or not do; whether others wake up or continue to sleep: you now have a choice. The Apostle Peter, having assured brethren that “the day of the Lord will come as a thief” (2 Peter 3:10), says to them, “Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for these things, give diligence that ye may be found in peace, without spot and blameless in his sight” (2 Peter 3:14). The Apostle Paul assured the evangelist Titus of a “hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised before times eternal” (Titus 1:2). Do you have the same assurance? Do you have a hope in death?
- CL Bruner