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Scripture Reading: Acts 7:54-60
How Christians Die
1. How we face death makes a statement about how we live, Heb. 11:35.
a. Aristides (125 AD) wrote a friend about a new religion: “And if any righteous man among them passes from the world, they rejoice and offer thanks to God; and they escort his body as if he were setting out from one place to another near.” (Early Christian Writings, “The Apology of Aristides the Philosopher, XV: On Christianity”) (cf. 1 Ths. 4:13)
b. Live as saint - Die with thanks.
c. Live in sin - Die in darkness and despair.
2. Death of saints precious (valued, prized), Psa.116:15.
3. How do you view your death? How does the Christian die?
I. THE CHRISTIAN DIES IN HOPE, Phil. 1:21-23; Col. 1:3-5; 1 Ths. 4:13-16.
A. With the Joy of Eternal Salvation.
1. Delivered from wrath by Jesus, 1 Ths. 1:10.
2. We live with Christ now - death wont destroy that - Enhance it, 1 Ths. 5:9-11.
B. With an Expectation of the Resurrection of Life, Jno. 5:28-29.
1. Because of Jesus' resurrection, 1 Cor. 15:20-22.
2. At last trump - Incorruptible / Immortality, 1 Cor. 15:51-53.
3. Power of God at work, 1 Cor. 6:14.
C. With a Desire for Heaven.
1. Heavenly house, 2 Cor. 5:1.
2. Mansions prepared, Jno. 14:2-3.
3. Pilgrims / strangers seeking their own country - Heavenly city, Heb. 11:13-16.
II. THE CHRISTIAN DIES IN COMFORT, 1 Ths. 4:16-18.
-(This does not mean pain cannot attend the Christian's death, but that a knowledge of what awaits him gives assurance, not fear.)
A. With the Assurance that God is in Control.
1. Power over death in resurrection, 1 Cor. 15:24-26.
a. Removes fear of death, Heb. 2:14-15.
b. Gospel reveals His power, 2 Tim. 1:10.
2. Christian lives by faith in His power (Rev. 1:17-18) -- Death is not the end.
3. Fear of death need not overtake us.
B. There is Victory Over Death in Jesus.
1. Freedom from trials, temptations, burdens and despair - REST (Rev. 14:13).
2. Death does not defeat the Christian, Rom. 8:38-39.
III. THE CHRISTIAN DIES IN FAITH, Heb. 11:13.
A. Confidently Believing in a Future Judgment.
1. He is ready for his appointment, Heb. 9:27.
2. Adversaries of Christ face a fearful judgment of fire, Heb. 10:26-27.
3. A time of righting wrongs, A time of rest and divine vengeance, 2 Ths. 1:3-9.
B. Confidently Believing in a Future Reward, 2 Tim. 4:6-8.
1. Reserved in heaven, 1 Pet. 1:4.
2. Glory with Christ when He comes Col. 3:4 (cf. Matt. 25:31-34, 46).
1. We must live so as to prepare for death.
2. When you die and go to meet the Lord, will you be meeting a stranger or a friend? Heb. 10:30-31; Jno. 14:3
By: Joe R. Price
Posted: January 9, 2013