A beneath the surface truth of our life is this – how we live is shaped by our beliefs about how we die.
Death has always been a part of God’s plan. In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve are expelled from the Garden after eating from the Tree of Knowledge. What is unknown by most Christians is that in Genesis they are expelled for this transgression and also out of fear that Adam and Eve would eat from the second Tree, the Tree of Life, and become immortal.
Think it through. Adam and Eve were created from the start to not live forever.
Jesus was created the same way. He was created to die. Scripture works to point this out to us, referring to Jesus as the ‘Second Adam’ (Romans 5:12). Jesus is the one who rather than fear a future where he must rely on God, Jesus embraces that future. You and I in some way wrestle with the same decision. Will our life be one where we take matters into our own hands or could we choose to trust in God to get us through the place where we see no way?
Your decision, my decision, how to respond to that question shapes how we live.
A couple of weeks ago I returned from a trip early in the wee hours of the morning. As I got on the elevator at 2:30 a.m. I was exhausted and looked the part. Coming out of the elevator, a crowd of younger people was heading into the city. They were dressed for a party and appeared fresh, ready for the start of their evening.
I laughed when I saw them. I was them once.
Now, I am on the verge of judgment here but stay with me 🙂 Jesus partied when it was time to party and mourned when it was time to mourn. What allows us to move well and adjust when needed is what we believe about death. If I believe nothing happens and there is no way out I will maximize myself and party until I can’t anymore. If I believe there is something to come, I will live in a way that prepares me and spreads that message to others. I will live a sacrificial life.
Good Friday is about making that choice. Jesus lived his life in preparation for another and trusted God to get him through.
What about you?