Philippians 1:21: “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”

There’s more to life than our physical reality. This becomes apparent as we age. Our souls inside of us somehow know that our bodies are a temporary haven. So when our bodies give out the question emerges: where do we go from here?

The secret lies with Jesus. Life is centered around Christ. He was there at the dawn of creation when the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. Jesus knows the mechanics of life because He helped build it when the universe was created.

Jesus is special because He became man and walked in our shoes. He knows Heaven intimately, and He knows what it means to live on Earth.

Humanly speaking, our connection to Heaven is complicated. Lots of things get in our way. Heaven can be both close and a million miles away. It really depends on our hearts – are they open or clouded with fear, rage, and sadness. The whole spectrum of human emotions has the potency to drown out Heaven.

The physical reality of life on Earth can be both overwhelming and mind-numbing. Jesus knows it all too well. He lived here. His address was in Israel. He lived there during a time period of extreme political unrest. And he ended up being executed by the political system of His time.

Physical death, however, could not kill Jesus. The Author of Life demonstrated that life cannot be eliminated by physical death. Life is tied to love, and love is tied to God. Jesus lived a life of love. He could not be killed because the love of God cannot be killed.

Our bodily functions will terminate at some point, nevertheless, our love continues. If we have been close to Jesus during our lifetime, we will grow closer to Him in Heaven.

Living close to Jesus is Life with a capital “L”. Dying will be gain because after our physical departure we get to meet Him face to face.

1 John 4:10: “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

What is love? And the answer is: God is love.

It is easy to forget who takes center stage, especially when that someone is invisible to the naked eye. – And yet, everything we see comes from Him. God knows no beginning and no end; He was here first and logically, so was His love. Like a candle lights another candle, He lit up the entire universe with life and love. He gave His life forms the power to procreate and with that, life and love exponentially grew in leaps and bounds.

Then death entered creation. Death is not only opposed to life and love, death’s intention is to terminate it. Something had to be done; and just like that an epic battle began.

At the end of this age, God is going to eliminate death. The precursor to death’s elimination is Jesus’ resurrection on Easter morning. The tombstone was rolled away as He emerged victoriously from the grave. His resurrection has changed everything.

The Lord’s future victory celebration is depicted in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah 25:6-8a):

“6 On this mountain the Lord Almighty will prepare
    a feast of rich food for all peoples,
a banquet of aged wine—
    the best of meats and the finest of wines.
7 On this mountain he will destroy
    the shroud that enfolds all peoples,
the sheet that covers all nations;
8     he will swallow up death forever.”

At the time of this writing we are still very much affected by death. Despite its ongoing devastation, however, death is like a mortally wounded warrior. Ironically, death itself will be terminated. This is an amazing piece of information to think about. There will be an actual time, a point in history when death is forever gone. – Praise the Lord!

When the tides have turned against us and life’s ferocious waves want to drag us down we need to remember the end of the story. We need to remember who has won.