John 11:23-27, “Jesus said to her, your brother [Lazarus] will rise again. Martha said to Him, I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day. Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in Me, though he/she die, yet he/she will live; and everyone who lives and believes in Me, shall never die. Do you believe this? She said to Him, Yes, Lord; I believe that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who is coming into the world.” (Emphasis mine – remember the question in Verse 26.)
Most people have heard the account of the death of Jesus’ friend, Lazarus, and how the Savior was able to raise him back to life. There was a song written by Aaron Wilburn and sung by Karen Peck that had a line, “He was 4 days late, but He was right on time.” By the way, even though Jesus is fully God, He gave thanks to the Father for allowing Him to perform this miracle, and did so in front of others. While on this earth, He fully subjected Himself to the Father’s will (John 11:41-42).
God’s clock is totally different than ours, and He made our 24-hour system just for us (Genesis 1:3-5). We will be able to understand all this when we are free from our human perishable bodies with limited brain function. All who are taken up in the Rapture – the dead in Christ will rise first followed by those true believers who are still alive – will be given new, forever, immortal, imperishable bodies with a totally new mindset. We will be able to understand everything in a new way for us. We will finally totally realize that our Heavenly Father is absolutely true and pure and just.
There are people who say that this is wrong, because when a person dies, there is no longer any life for them. They cannot understand that passing from this life to the next is but a blink of the eye. There may have been suffering before the last breath is taken here, but the instant life ceases here, it begins again in eternity. Some will be in a wonderful, marvelous and glorious outcome, and some to eternal misery. Best part for true believers in Jesus the Christ is we will find out for certain that by having chosen to receive and accept His gift given at Calvary, we will be immediately with Him.
Worst part will be for those who chose this world over Jesus. Whether they were aware of it or not, they will have chosen Satan as their leader, and with their last breath here, they will be in instant misery and will realize they made the worst mistake ever. There is no other option, and their choice will be one that cannot be undone. The parable of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:19-31 is a demonstration of what will happen at the instant an unbeliever dies. Some may say this is totally unfair, but they had chances to make better decisions while still on this earth. It also tells us that Lazarus was immediately in paradise (Abraham’s bosom).
At this point, the final judgment has not taken place. This is a prelude that started with the creation, and goes all the way to the Great White Throne Judgment. Hell that was made for Satan and fallen angels, or demons, as stated in Matthew 25:41, will receive its first occupants when the ultimate evil antichrist and his false prophet are thrown in there as given in Revelation 19:20. The next resident one thousand years later will be Satan himself (Revelation 20:10). After he is there, everyone from pre-Calvary who refused to do God’s will, and those from Calvary through the Millennium that refused to accept Jesus as Savior will go through the Great White Throne Judgment of Revelation 20:11-15. They will wish they could cease to exist altogether, but their torment will go on forever.
All who were in God’s will pre-Calvary, and all from Calvary to the end of the Millennium will also go through a judgment; however, the atmosphere will be totally different We will be shown all we did, and maybe be shown how we could’ve done better; but the fact remains that all who called on Jesus to be their Savior will not be condemned (Romans 8:1).
Ours will be a judgment where rewards are gained or lost, but we will not have lost our eternity with the Savior in Heaven. Paul told us in 1 Corinthians 3:13-15, “Each one’s work will become manifest, for the day will disclose it; because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he/she will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned up, he/she will suffer loss, though he/she will be saved, but only through fire.”
Before going further, the Bible is specific about not being saved by works. Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by Grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works so that no one may boast.”
The “work” in 1 Corinthians is how did we honor Jesus after calling out to Him for our Salvation. Knowing what He did for us to keep us all from eternal damnation, we would want to repent and turn away from our habitual sin. By doing so, we show we don’t take lightly His sacrifice. We won’t be perfect as long as we are in these immortal bodies, and we will still sin. Our attitude should be more loving toward the Father and our brothers and sisters (Matthew 22:36-40).
Remember the question in John 11:26? “…and everyone who lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” Martha had the best answer by saying, “Yes Lord, I believe You are the Christ, the Son of God who is coming into the world.” Couple this with Matthew 16:16; Mark 8:29 and Luke 9:20 with Peter’s confession that Jesus was the Christ (anointed one or Messiah). You now have the basis for our Salvation. Romans 10:9-13 says for us to confess our sins and believe that only Jesus can save us. All who call on Him sincerely will be saved. This is given point blank in John 14:6 and Acts 4:12.
In this life there will be some good times, but also some bad times. Best part for believers is, this ain’t Home! All this will be forgotten when we get to be in the presence of our Savior. “I Can Only Imagine” says it best; “Will I be able to speak at all?”
Times are rapidly pushing this world toward the New World Order and the Tribulation reign of the antichrist. For believers, we’re concerned, but not totally discouraged or defeated. We are going Home soon, and it will take less than a second for us to be with Him when He calls. Please review 1 Corinthians 15:51-53 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17. Then look at 1 Thessalonians 1:10; 1 Thessalonians 5:9; and finally Revelation 3:10. These verses and others tell us that God will not put any true believer through the 7-year wrath. The antichrist will be revealed only after we have been raptured (2 Thessalonians 2:7-10).
We have the choice of a “Total Win” or “total loss” situation. Eternal life with Jesus in Heaven forever, or eternal misery, yet still alive in the Lake of Fire forever.
By trying to “overanalyze” God’s plain message, there are those who just can’t believe it doesn’t involve more. They believe there has to be more “ceremony” than God gave us. Just take it as it says; believe, confess, repent, accept Jesus and you will be saved. No manmade rituals will count; no special recitals; no giving certain treasures to the “church”; just be up front and honest with Jesus, and you will become one of His flock. He’s waiting for your call right now.
Ahavah B’Shem Yeshua! (Love in the name of Jesus!)