Nobody likes to talk about death. Death is viewed as a negative aspect of life. My sister Abby would often times bring up the possibility of her dying or anyone in our immediate family dying in a car crash or other incident. I remember telling her to stop saying things like that. Why would she even think such things?
We all know death is a natural part of life.
In fact, death is part of the circle of life, as some people like to call it. The issue with death is that most of us believe death will come later rather than sooner. However, there is a type of death that happened way before we were born. Let’s backtrack to thousands of years ago when planet earth was in creation as well as humanity.
In Genesis chapter three, the Bible mentions the fall of Adam and Eve. I’m sure most of you know the history of what happened in the Garden of Eden, both Adam and Eve disobeyed God, which brought about a spiritual death upon them and on every human being after them (us). We were born as babies into the circle of life, yet we remained dead on the inside due to the disobedience of Adam and Eve.
Rather than being born with eternal life, we were born dead spiritually.
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Although children are often seen as innocent and the most vulnerable individuals of humanity, children will eventually become older. Inevitably they encounter sin like the rest of us. However, the Bible tells us in Matthew 19:14 NIV, that Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of Heaven.” Why would Jesus say that the kingdom of Heaven belongs to little children when he knew that those little children would eventually grow up and no longer have access to the kingdom of Heaven due to the sin rooted deep within them?
To give you some context, during Jesus’ earthly ministry, children were brought to Him. People were requesting Him to pray for them (Matthew 19:13). However, children aren’t always well behaved, and back then in Jesus’ time even now in some instances, children were seen as a burden or as an inconvenience to society. Because of this notion, the disciples most likely rebuked those bringing their children to Jesus out of the desire to respect Jesus’ position as a teacher.
Jesus on the other hand was not concerned about his position as a teacher.
He welcomed and invited children into his presence. Children are often needy and dependent and are unaware of life and everything that surrounds them. Children function mainly on emotion rather than reason. This is why Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these” (Matthew 19:14).
Scripture often compares believers to children (Luke 10:21; Galatians 4:19; 1 John 4:4). Jesus said, “ Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3-4 NIV; Mark 10:15 NIV).
Matthew 19:14, teaches us that Jesus has regard for the weakest and most vulnerable among us. Despite how compassionate Jesus’ followers are, Jesus Himself is more compassionate still. Most importantly, Matthew 19:14 teaches us to come to Christ in childlike humility, faith, and simplicity.
Just like children who implicitly trust their parents, believers trust God.
Faith is not about knowing everything or doing everything right. Faith is about trusting. About having confidence that no matter what happens, our Father in Heaven will take care of us after death on this earth. Trusting God even when life is uncertain. Even when life is sad and makes no sense. That makes a believer like a child. The Bible tells us in John 6:37 NIV, “All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.”
There was a point in my life where I felt dead in my sin and so far away from God. This feeling of death was not enjoyable. This moment in time was after walking with the Lord for about 15 years. Never did I think I would feel so far away from God the way I did in that moment.
Although we are born spiritually dead, God’s plan and purpose for His children is redemption and sanctification. When we feel dead in our sin, we can find comfort in knowing that God calls us his own. He will never ignore us or abandon us no matter how bad or big we think our sin is.
Dear friend, sin is defeated on the cross by the precious blood of Jesus and His death!
Shame and guilt bring spiritual death, but Jesus brought redemption for all peoples (Revelation 5:9-10 NIV).
When we experience spiritual death due to our sin, we aren’t dead forever. Let us rejoice in that promise.
“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience – among whom we all once lived in the passion of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ-by grace you have been saved and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 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. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” – Ephesians 2:1-10 NIV