dust to dust …

Continuing on from yesterday … let’s see … there was a question left unexamined:

  • What will happen once I die?

Perhaps a better starting question is ‘Why does man die?’  After the six days of creation, “God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good.”  Based on what we see in Scripture, at this point there was no death in all of creation.  Before God made Eve, He commanded Adam, saying, “From any tree of the garden you may eat freely; but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.

Well, things didn’t go too well from there … Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?”  The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’  The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die!  For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”  When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate.  (Genesis 3:1-6 NASB)

And sin and death entered into the creation God once saw as ‘very good’.  Just as a little more confirmation on that conclusion …

Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned.  Romans 5:12 (NASB)

And thus God said to Adam, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life.  Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you will eat the plants of the field;  By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return.”

Just to refresh your memory on man’s origins from the dust …

Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.  Genesis 2:7 (NASB)

Dust to dust …

Note the frustration of the author of Ecclesiastes …

For the fate of the sons of men and the fate of beasts is the same. As one dies so dies the other; indeed, they all have the same breath and there is no advantage for man over beast, for all is vanity.  All go to the same place. All came from the dust and all return to the dust.  Who knows that the breath of man ascends upward and the breath of the beast descends downward to the earth?  I have seen that nothing is better than that man should be happy in his activities, for that is his lot. For who will bring him to see what will occur after him?  Ecclesiastes 3:19-22 (NASB)

While this passage opens with a great deal of frustration over death, it seems to close with a question that expresses a sense of hope … Who will bring man to see what will occur after him … after his death?

Who indeed?  Christ Jesus … Lord and Savior … Lamb of God … Bridegroom …

And while the sin of Adam and Eve … our sin … brought death into this present world, note what’s absent in the new heaven and the new earth …

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.  And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband … and He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.”  Revelation 21:1,2,4 (NASB)

Lord willing, more before the end of the week on the question, What will happen once I die?

Bernie

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About bwebbjr

A grandfather, father, husband, man, and a child of God who is following Christ Jesus and working out his salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work IN me, both to will and to work for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12-13). I dodged my first bullet with cancer when a cancerous polyp was removed in a sigmoid colectomy surgery in August 2007. Four years later, in the midst of a second colectomy surgery we discovered I had Stage IV metastatic colon cancer. Rather than colectomy surgery I had colostomy surgery, which now means the colostomy bag is a part of my everyday life ... with the emphasis on life. God has given us a peace beyond understanding as my wife and I have traveled this journey. By the grace of God I am blessed to be a 6 plus year cancer survivor aka warrior. In writing, I am often wrestling with my own personal struggles and beliefs and in the midst God leads me to a lesson He wants me to learn ... or sometimes He simply touches me in the revelation of Himself. My hope is that the result you see here might touch your heart and glorify God. And let me be clear ... I am not the only one with something to say. Please join in the conversation sharing your faith, your cancer experiences, etc. I would love to hear from you. Bernie
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