The only time I hear the question, “Are you prepared to die?,” is in the context of playing a very difficult video game. In our culture, we tend to avoid this particular topic whenever possible. Sure, our older relatives pass on, and in one way or another most of us face death. Yet, I cannot even recall a single time where my parents, teachers or mentors asked me this questions. I never gave it serious thought until I had a pastor ask me during a sermon. We should ask ourselves this questions, sooner rather than later, as the Bible also warns us to make ready.
Psalm 39:4 “LORD, make me to know my end And what is the extent of my days; Let me know how transient I am.
Psalm 90:12 “So teach us to number our days, That we may present to You a heart of wisdom.”
Hebrews 9:27 “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment”
As I get older in years, I think about the future, and I know that at some point, my chapter of life on this planet will come to an end. It does for all of us! Yet we never sit down and talk about it. What takes place when you die?
The Bible makes it clear, we will face judgement in front of God. Spoiler warning! We are all guilty.
Romans 3.9 “None is righteous, no, not one; 11 no one understands; no one seeks for God. 12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”
When I explain that to people, I frequently see a shocked reaction followed up with a exclamation that God must be some sort of masochist wanting us all to die. It amazes me just how few people have thought though even up to this point. Many assume that God will simply allow everyone into heaven. Yet, Jesus spoke more about judgement and hell than He did about heaven. And feeling upset about a reality does not change it.
Thankfully, God loves us very much. So, He made a way whereby we may escape the consequences of our heinous actions. Most people know the verse John 3.16…
John 3.16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
1 John 1.9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
Repentance means to turn from sin. And, in a way, faith means to turn towards God. These are two sides of the same coin. When you truly turn to God, your turn your back on sin. The Bible explains when we do that, He sends His spirit in us, and we become born again. From that moment on, God sees us not as guilty sinners, but, rather, as white as snow. Washed by the blood His Son shed for us, He no longer holds us accountable for those sins since, for us, He already poured out His wrath on His Son at the cross.
This is the ‘good news,’ or Gospel message. And, yes, for those who put their full trust in Jesus, it is good news indeed! Yet, the Bible has equally strong warnings for those who continue to live their lives independent of their creator. And, for them, I would ask, “are you ready to die?”