Everyone has probably seen a dead bird or a shell without its snail, and this often gives rise to questions from young children, “Why is it dead? Why is the shell empty? Who killed the fish we are eating?”
These questions and others such as, “Why do we die?” and, “What happens when we die?” are common to everyone, both adults and children.
We get different answers from different people: “When you’re dead, you’re dead. That’s it, nothing more.” Or, “We die when we are very sick and we can’t look after ourselves, or when we are very old.” Or, “When someone dies, they go into the sky among the stars, …” Or …
A lot of possible answers, which goes to show that we would do well to find the real answer that God has given us in the Bible, God’s Word.
First of all, we need to realise that God has neither a beginning nor an end. He wasn’t born as you were and he will never die. He is eternal. I know, it’s quite difficult to understand!
Right at the beginning of the Bible, in the first book, Genesis, it is written that God made the first humans in his image, to be like him. First there was Adam and then the first woman, Eve. God put them to live in the garden of Eden. Everything was perfect. God even described his creation as being very good.
In the garden, there were two special trees, the Tree of Life and the Tree of the Knowledge of Good & Evil. Adam and Eve were allowed to eat from the Tree of Life, but not from the other one, otherwise they would die.
If they had eaten only from the first tree, they would never have died! Animals would never have fought, killed and eaten one another, and the peace of God would have been everywhere.
But, there is a but. One day, Adam & Eve disobeyed God. They listened to the devil, Satan, who wanted to destroy God’s wonderful plan, and they ate the forbidden fruit.
God had to kill animals he had created to make clothes for Adam and Eve.
But He did not allow them to stay in the Garden of Eden. It was the start of a new era. Animals died, and so did human beings. Cain, Adam and Eve’s first son, killed his brother, Abel. Death had arrived.
God had another plan, though, because he didn’t want people to carry on dying.
Paul wrote a letter to the first church in Rome. In chapter 6, verse 23, we read: For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
That’s the Good News. That’s God’s new plan for you and for me, and for everyone who asks God, “Come into my heart, I am inviting you. I am asking for forgiveness, take away my sins with the blood that Jesus, your son, poured out on the cross. Please give me eternal life, like you.”
Even when, one day, your body dies, you will live eternally, forever and ever, with God, with Jesus, in heaven, where Jesus has prepared a place for you… And me!
Soon, the resurrected Jesus will come back to Earth and death will no longer exist for anybody.
It’s written in the Bible and it’s true!