Having performed numerous Christian funerals, we’ve seen sadness and rejoicing, praises and curses, utter hopelessness and abundant-joy from those left behind to pick up the pieces. Death need not be a time for sadness when we know, have scriptural faith in and can ascertain where our departed relatives and friends have gone and what lies ahead for them hereafter!
If we can perceive what our heavenly Father God has waiting for Christians in the afterlife, the passing of loved ones will become much more joyous and any hopelessness or grief we feel can become a lot less strenuous.
“Crossing Over: Life & Death” is intended to comfort believers with what GOD says awaits every Christian servant on the other side of life. Death isn’t punishment but a good thing. It’s an integral part of living a wholesome life and a rest from the trials here on the Earth.
Death is something that’s very sure in life for all people but for Christians it’s not darkness but a falling asleep in the physical and awakening on the other side with Jesus in a spiritual forever.
Eye hath not seen, nor ear
heard, neither have entered
into the heart of man, the
things which GOD hath
prepared for them
that love Him
1 CORINTHIANS 2:9
What great expectations for all believers! We’ve seen beautiful, awesome things on the earth but our minds cannot perceive the things awaiting the Christian in heaven. With God all things are possible - without Him we can do nothing (Philippians 4:13, John 15:5).
To see where a spirit goes without GOD in their life, the Apostle Peter shares first-hand information from our glorified Christ where he said once crucified, Jesus descended into the depths of the earth and preached to the spirits that were in prison (1 Peter 3:19, Luke 4:18).
Faithfully-departed believers didn’t go into prison but to Abraham’s Bosom where they were to be comforted for good in their lives prior to the Cross while all the unfaithful spirits went into Sheol or Hades where they were punished according to their earthly-evil-deeds.
From the fall of Adam to just prior to the Cross, all souls were judged according to the heart’s intent in relation to Old Testament Law and God knows all hearts - He is The righteous judge. When Christ gave up the ghost on Calvary there were many souls in spirit-prison who had never had the chance at God’s Grace by faith, and that’s where Jesus descended after his death; to set the captives free; everyone who had bowed their knee to Jesus as their God and Savior from the pre-Cross era would be saved (Isaiah 45:22,23, Matthew 11:23).
All souls must be given the chance to receive God in spirit; grace in place of law and yes, even those who died before the risen Christ. The Lord is a just and fair GOD, and except that He preached and gave the souls who had died out of fellowship the chance to be saved, He would not have been righteous; but He did allow the pre-Cross dead that chance for eternal life. On that day, every lost soul accepted God’s Lamb and they were set free and seen by many in Jerusalem (Matthew 27:52,53 - 1 Corinthians 15:4-6). Those who were in Hades became saints as are all who accept Jesus as their Lord and God.
A “bowing knee” is twice illustrated in God’s Word as submission. Once in Isaiah and the other in Philippians (2:9,10) and the latter speaks of a future time when every knee shall bow to the Lord Jesus Christ. That hasn’t occurred to date but every knee WILL bow to Jesus. Yes, even evil men of history’s past, present and future who’ve rejected God’s grace including all cults and Islam. When God’s Word says “every knee shall bow” it means ALL who’ve ever lived on the earth. All lost souls will one day be extended God’s grace to accept Christ and they will bow in submission to Jesus as their God and all will be saved. God’s salvation is everlasting (Isaiah 45:17).
Death and Hell will one day be destroyed (Rev. 20:14) and when the law ends, grace shall abound and all who’ve died out of fellowship, will be given a last chance to accept Jesus Christ as their God and Savior and at that time, every knee shall bow before Jesus, “of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth” and beloved, “Hell is UNDER the earth.” Evil spirits currently in Hells' Prison will get a last chance to bow the knee and they will repent and profess Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father. (Matthew 11:23, Philippians 2:10)
The prophet Jeremiah gave insight into the created spirit and that God foreknew every soul before sending them to earth. God created our spirits during His six days of labour and rested on the blessed and holy seventh (Jeremiah 1:5 Genesis 1:1-31). Our spirit and soul will live forever; It’s our personal choice where we will spend that eternity?
WHO IS THIS JESUS?
In John 10:26-33, Jesus told the Jews that He was the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and they didn’t believe Him. They saw all His miracles and heard Him say He was the “Son of God” meaning He IS GOD. It should give all believers great comfort to know that Jesus reigns supreme and that there is therefore now no condemnation (or death) to those in Christ Jesus who walk not after the flesh, but after the spirit (Romans 8:1). Jesus is God and our Intercessor between life and death. Knowing all spirits, dying has no sting as one day death will be swallowed up in God’s victory (1 Corinthians 15:54,55).
While Jesus was speaking with the crowds, a ruler of a synagogue had a daughter who had died and the rabbi was notified. Jesus told him to have faith and that she would be made whole. “Weep not, she is not dead but sleepeth.” (Luke 8:49-56) They laughed Him to scorn, knowing she was dead. What does man know?
Arriving at the house Jesus put them all out saving the maiden’s parents, John, James and Peter. He took the daughter by the hand and said, “maid, arise,” and her spirit returned to her and she arose. This is just one of the many miracles Jesus performed on this earth 2000 years ago; signs that should have told the people Who it was that stood before them. Only God Almighty has power over all things, including the spirit world.
Jesus has power over everything and that makes Him The Almighty, All-knowing God of the Bible. Jesus was God in the flesh, the Living Word who was rejected by religious leaders, then and now, but He was received by the simple; the fishermen and those who knew they were clearly unforgiven-sinners.
Only God can know what men are thinking and He alone can forgive man’s sin (Psalms 94:11, Matthew 9:1-4) This man called Jesus was born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14), commanded spirits back from death; He healed lepers and palsy, the blind received their sight, the sick were healed, cripples walked and the dumb spake (Matt 11:5).
Those were the signs that should have shouted that Jesus was God as He had power over every thing - He walked on water and commanded the winds “cease, be still,” and they obeyed Him (Matt 14:25, Luke 8:24,25).
Who is this Savior with power over all the elements and calls us to be faithful disciples? No one before or after Jesus had any such power and that’s because Jesus is the God of the Bible Who came to Earth to save the souls who will humble themselves, and pray, and seek His face, and turn from wickedness (2 Chronicles 7:14). Jesus is still looking for disciples who will walk by faith and not by their sight (Hebrews 11:1-40).
JESUS IS GOD
The Old Testament Book of Isaiah speaks volumes of this One who would come to Israel and be rejected by the religious leaders, but when have religious leaders ever truly known the Will of God? Not in this lifetime!
For unto us a child is born,
unto us a son is given, and
the government shall be upon
his shoulder. And his name
shall be called WONDERFUL,
COUNSELLOR, The mighty GOD,
The EVERLASTING FATHER,
the PRINCE of PEACE.
Walk by faith now because by sight men shall soon be blinded to the truth. In the very near future there will be many that will receive a strong delusion and believe the lie that the coming Antichrist will be God. They’ll believe that because they don’t know God’s Word and they’ll be led astray by the signs and wonders this man of sin will perform within their sight (2 Thessalonians 2:3-12).
For God’s children, Crossing Over from Life to Death can be a natural, peaceful event. No matter who we are or what we’ve accomplished in this lifetime, only that done in Christ will last; the rest will be burned off and what’s left is what we did for Jesus and His Kingdom. On earth as it is in heaven will prevail and how close we are to Jesus on the Earth determines our proximity to GOD when we get to in heaven (1 Corinthians 2:9).
Once you accept Jesus as your Lord, God and Savior, condemnation and the sting of physical death no longer has a grip on you. Your Gift of eternal salvation through God’s grace by your faith in accepting Christ’s free gift applies the moment you say these simple, yet integral words below (Romans 6:23, Ephesians 2:8,9).
DEAR GOD IN HEAVEN,
I AM A SINNER BUT I BELIEVE, BY FAITH,
THAT JESUS DIED FOR SINNERS LIKE ME.
I ASK YOU TO FORGIVE ALL MY SINS, TO
CLEAN UP MY LIFE AND TO PROTECT ME FROM
THE EVIL TO COME! I ASK THIS IN THE
PRECIOUS NAME OF JESUS. AMEN.
ROMANS 10:9,10 - REVELATION 3:10