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James 2:26 says: "... the body without the spirit is dead ..." The Bible teaches that every living person has both an outer man and an inner man: body and spirit (2 Corinthians 4:16). When the body becomes incapable of sustaining life, then the spirit departs and returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7). Death then, is not simply a physical failure of the heart, brain, and other body organs. Death, according to the Bible, is the separation of the spirit from the body.
But why do our bodies become unable to sustain life? When Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden, God's punishment to him was stated as follows: "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground ... for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return" - Genesis 3:19. Since we are all physical descendants of Adam, this same physical death comes to us. So "...it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" - Hebrews 9:27. We die because sin is in the world!
Is death the end of our existence? 1 Corinthians 15:22 says that Christ was raised from the dead as the firstfruits of the resurrection, "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." Just as surely as we know we will die because of Adam, just that surely we can know we will be raised from the dead because of Jesus. "... The hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear (Jesus') voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation" - John 5:28,29.
Are you ready for the resurrection and the judgment?
(c) Copyright David E. Pratte, 2003
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