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Saturday, 3 December 2011

ONE WEEK TO LIVE!

If you had just one week to live, what would you do? Would you do anything differently, such as making your peace with the Lord Jesus, and putting your affairs in order? Or would you continue as normal? Well, in the Bible a certain King was told he had only a short while to live. The story is told in 2 Kings 20. In verse 1, we read as follows: Sometime later Hezekiah became deathly sick. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz paid him a visit and said, “Put your affairs in order; you're about to die—you haven't long to live.”

The reality is that death occurs every time all around us, and one day it will be your turn to answer death’s call. On average, 1.78 people die per second, 107 people die per minute, 6,390 people die per hour, 153,000 people die per day and 56.0 million people die per year

What is death?
Death has been a mystery in all ages. It was Kenneth Hagin who was said that science stands utterly mute in death’s presence and is unable to explain it. Philosophy turns poetical when it meets this dread enemy of man. And theology has dealt only in generalities when attempting to explain it. To understand death, you have to appreciate the fact that as a human being, you are made up of three parts: namely, spirit, soul, and body. You are a spirit, you have a soul, and you live in a body. We do not see the real you, your spirit man, which controls the “you” that we see. The Bible confirms the tripartite nature of man in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 when it says, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Several kinds of death are spoken of in the Bible, but there are three kinds with which we need to familiarise ourselves: 1) spiritual death; 2) physical death; and 3) eternal death or the Second Death, which is being cast into the lake that burns with fire and brimstone (Rev. 21:8). When God said to Adam, “. . . in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die” (Gen. 2:17), He did not refer to physical death but to spiritual death. If man had never died spiritually, he would not have died physically. Spiritual death means separation from God. Physical death occurs when your spirit lives your body and returns to God. In Genesis 2:7 (AMP), we are told “Then the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath or spirit of life, and man became a living being.” The second death is eternal separation from God in hell. Spiritual death came to the earth first and then manifested itself in the physical body by destroying it. When man sinned in Eden, God said to him in Genesis 3:19 (NIV) “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are  and to dust you will return.”

Before you were born, the number of your days were written in God’s book. And when your time is up, death will come calling. Psalm 139:14-16.  (NCV) tells us "I praise you because you made me in an amazing and wonderful way. What you have done is wonderful. I know this very well. You saw my bones being formed as I took shape in my mother's body. When I was put together there, you saw my body as it was formed. All the days planned for me were written in your book before I was one day old." In reality, death is nothing more than  the passage from this world into eternity. Because of the mystery surrounding death it is, of course, quite scary! Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven, but Nobody Wants to Die is the title of a popular song.  However, Jesus conquered death on the cross of Calvary, and as a result, death has lost its sting. For the child of God, physical death is now but a passage through which we go to eternal glory. The Bible teaches in Hebrews 9:27 that “Each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment” (NLT)
           
Death is Normal and natural
Ecclesiastes 3:1-2 (NKJV) tells us that "To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted;"

After Death comes judgement
2 Corinthians 5:10 (GW) says "All of us must appear in front of Christ’s judgment seat. Then all people will receive what they deserve for the good or evil they have done while living in their bodies."

The death of a Christian is a home coming and how we go is irrelevant – Stephen was stoned to death, John the Baptist was beheaded! Psalm 116:15 (NKJV) says “Precious in the sight of the LORD Is the death of His saints”. And in 1 Corinthians 15:19 (NLT), we are told, “And if our hope in Christ is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.”

The key is to live each day, as if it was your last! Are you ready to meet the Lord today? Then put your affairs in order. If you are not a Christian, invite Jesus into your heart as your personal Saviour and Lord. Do it today, because tomorrow may be too late!

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