In these bulletin articles, we’ve been going through a list of questions and answers contained in the Westminster Larger Catechism, published in the 17th Century. Last week, we began to look at the glory Christians share with Christ by seeing the glory that Christians have in this life with Christ.
But will this life end? Yes. As we know from experience, everyone dies and any glory that they have in this life ends.
The Bible also affirms the existence of death. The book of Hebrews says: ‘man is destined to die once’ (Hebrews 9:27).
Every human has a date with death. As Benjamin Franklin said, ‘In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.’
But why do all humans die? The Bible explains that it is because all humans have sinned.
The apostle Paul says in his letter to the church in Rome: ‘Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned’ (Romans 5:12).
Paul is explaining that because our first father, Adam, sinned, we have all sinned too. Adam as our federal head brought sin upon the whole human race. And thus he brought death on the whole human race as punishment for sin.
Of course, all humans commit actual sin as well. Day by day, each human being sins against God in thought, word and deed. Paul, quoting from the Psalms, says: ‘There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one’ (Romans 3:10-12).
And so our own sin condemns us to death too, not simply Adam’s sin.
So is there any hope for life after death?
Yes. Paul says that there is a new federal head who brings life to the dead. Jesus Christ died in our place at the cross so that we could have life after death: ‘But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many!…For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous. The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord’ (Romans 5:15, 19-21).
So how do you experience such life through Christ? If you trust that Jesus died in your place to take your everlasting punishment for sin, you can live forever with him.
So do you know that you will one day die because of your sin? Have you trusted in Jesus Christ so that you can share in his glory, not only now, but also in the life to come?