The View Beyond Death and Dying

     Some would say that home is where your heart is, a place to call our own where we are comfortable and gravitate to after a long day of pursuing our passions. Jesus begins a long encounter with His disciples in the last 24 hours of His life prior to the crucifixion that awaits. He begins to tell them of His betrayer, and it unsettles the disciples. They are full of fear and dread of the imposing terror that awaits them as Jesus unfolds His fate.  But Jesus would not leave them in fear for He tells them, "Let not your heart be troubled neither be afraid, in my Father's house are many rooms and if it were not so I would have told you". 

     Jesus begins to look beyond the current circumstance and projects the future of eternal life to those who believe. For the next five chapters Jesus shares His heart and mentions the word "love" over 31 times. "Do not be afraid," Jesus said to His disciples, and He says the same to us, for what awaits us is far greater than any earthly circumstance or trouble that could befall us. Dwelling in the house of the Lord forever is our focus.  Unfortunately, we seldom find ourselves comforted there. The last 24 hours of Jesus' life is a chronicle of the events that will lead Him to His ascension to the right hand of God the Father where it all began.

     Do you worry or have fear and dread of dying? You're not alone, especially those without hope for the future who fear death and dying. In many ways, the world teaches us to dread the day of death. Yet while death in and of itself is an intruder in the created order and an enemy to the people of God, there is a sense in which we can legitimately look forward to the day on which we die, because at that point we will enter into our eternal, heavenly dwelling. Unless the Lord returns beforehand, death represents the point at which we will first see God face to face.