One thing we can be sure of in this life is that it will come to an end. Even though we know that we will all die at some point, we are never prepared for when that time comes. Many of us are also not emotionally prepared to deal with death. When we know death is imminent, we tend to struggle and may even head to a space of denial. While this is part of the normal grieving process, it can still be challenging to deal with. Fear of death is a common anxiety. The way we view death can affect how we move in our daily lives. If you are someone who fears death, here are four scriptures to help overcome it.
Jesus promises that when we die, He will take us by hand to heaven. He will escort us to our heavenly home. Many Christians believe this is the task of angels, but Jesus reserves this right. He will bring us to heaven’s glory. The Bible says, “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, also believe in me. In my Father’s house, there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may also be. And you know the way to the place where I am going.” We don’t have to fear death. We can look forward to death with anxious anticipation.
In Philippians 1:21-23, Paul said, “For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me; and I do not know which I prefer. I am hard-pressed between the two: my desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.” This passage offers some of the most memorable words in all scripture. Paul would continue to be faithful to God regardless of the verdict of his case, which would be life or death. He was clear that life on earth meant that he would live for Christ. However, death would be better because He knew he would be in the company of the Lord. Paul wasn’t rushing to die because he knew he needed to spread the gospel as far as he could. These particular words are essential when talking about what happens to a believer’s soul when they pass away. There are some who believe that the soul enters a space of unawareness and doesn’t go to heaven to be with the Lord until judgment day. This passage shows that this belief isn’t true. Paul is clear that his expectation of being with the Lord the minute his life on earth was completed. This is also a view reflected by Jesus when He tells the thief on the cross that He would be in paradise with Him that day.
In John 11:11-14, the Bible tells us that Jesus told the disciples that Lazarus had fallen asleep, but He was going there to awaken him. “The disciples said to Him, ‘Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will be all right.’ Jesus, however, had been speaking about His death, but they thought that He was referring merely to sleep. Then Jesus told them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead.’” The truth is, when a person is fast asleep, they are unaware of the things happening around them. The same applies to the dead. They are not conscious of anything. While death is something we fear, we can have comfort knowing that there won’t be a heightened awareness of it. The Bible tells us that when we pass, our souls are taken away. This happens because our sins are forgiven when we allow Jesus Christ to enter into our hearts. As Christians, we believe that death is simply our home away from our body. When we pass, God gives us the assurance that we will be with the Lord.
We all struggle with sin each day. One of the greatest things we can look forward to is our place in heaven. When we enter God’s kingdom, we are clear that the struggle with sin will be over for good. Revelation 21:7 tells us that “nothing unclean will enter [the kingdom of heaven], nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.” This may seem like a fearful passage initially, but it should give us something to look forward to. The only reason it is possible for us to enter heaven is because of Jesus. We don’t need to fear being judged for our sins because that judgment was taken away by Jesus at the cross. We know that when we enter heaven, our bodies will be free from sin. We won’t have to face the limitations and challenges we deal with here on earth.
It was not God’s original purpose for us to die. God made us so that we could live on earth forever. In the book of Genesis, we learn that God placed Adam and Eve on earth to be in a delightful paradise. The two were blessed with perfect health. God wanted the best for them. There isn’t a loving parent on this planet that wants their children to suffer the pain of death. Ecclesiastes 3:11 reminds us that God created us with the desire to live forever. Our Heavenly Father has opened the way for that desire to be fulfilled. Thankfully, God’s Word assures life beyond death. God also promises that we will return through a resurrection. Through this resurrection, we also receive the gift of eternal life. Our bodies may be temporary, but God has so much more planned for us than a limited existence. We can have complete faith in this promise.