Life After Death
Pastor Jonathan Talley • October 15, 2023
This past weekend, our church began a new series that I believe will profoundly impact our lives in a very special way. This series delves into one of the most profound questions of life: what happens to us after our earthly journey ends? In this recap, I’d like to share some of the key points from the sermon, based on 2 Corinthians 5, that addresses this question and lays a foundational understanding of what awaits us beyond this life.
- Our Physical Bodies Die: In this sermon, we didn’t shy away from discussing a topic many people tend to avoid: death. I began by acknowledging that just like many of you, I don’t like thinking or talking about death either. However, it is crucial to understand that our physical bodies will eventually cease to function when we die. What’s essential to grasp is that the real essence of who we are, our souls, never die. It’s important to note that this isn’t a fire-and-brimstone sermon, but rather a reflection on the questions many of us have about life after death.
- Recent Events and End Times: We also discussed recent world events, such as those in Israel, and the uncertainty surrounding whether they signify the end times described in the Bible. In response to this uncertainty, we emphasized the importance of focusing on spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. Our primary mission is to share His message with as many people as possible.
- Our Souls Separate from Our Bodies: Reading from 2 Corinthians 5:1-6, 8-9, I explained that our physical bodies will eventually wear out, and we will put on new heavenly bodies. It’s important to understand that we are not destined to be spirits without bodies; our eternal selves will be clothed in heavenly form. Throughout this part of the sermon, I emphasized that our ultimate goal should be to please Christ, whether we are in these earthly bodies or absent from them.
- The Two Judgments: We delved into the two judgments that all individuals will face. The Great White Throne Judgment typically pertains to those who did not know Christ, and their names are not recorded in the Book of Life. This judgment determines the destination for those who didn’t have a relationship with Jesus.
The Judgment Seat of Christ, on the other hand, is for believers and is not about sins but about rewards for the works we’ve done. I explained that while we are saved by grace, we are rewarded for our works, focusing on how we treated others, our motives, and the positive impacts we made in the world.
The sermon concluded with a reminder that what we believe about eternity significantly influences how we live today. It urged us to reflect on our own faith and the way we live our lives. The key takeaway is that what we do matters for eternity, and we should strive to make a difference by following Christ’s teachings and impacting the lives of those around us.
In the end, the central message of the series is clear: understanding and believing in what awaits us after we pass away can profoundly shape how we live our lives on Earth. Our time here is limited, and our actions and choices matter. The sermon left us with essential questions to ponder, such as whether we truly know Christ and whether we are living as if eternity truly matters. The hope is that by addressing these questions, we can live with purpose and leave a lasting, positive impact on the world.
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