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January 23, 2021 2:00 am
How can mortal man penetrate beyond the grave and find assurance and peace for his own heart? Philosophers won't help--they've been for centuries discussing life and death without any resolve. Scientists don't want to tread into the area of wrestling with such questions. Paul solved the problem when he wrote, "For this we say to you by the Word of the Lord." We don't need to wonder or speculate. Why substitute human speculation when we have divine revelation?
This teaching is from the series From the Edge of Eternity.Links:
This week's DevoMail: https://connnectwithskip.com/devomail
So death is the great separator.
But Jesus is the great reunite or what a great thought. I was thinking this week and I mean this one of the greatest things in heaven that I enjoy is being with you, without limitation, you connect sometimes every service exchange low pray for one another, but then we have to go home there's another service there will be home we can hang out for 300,000 million billion years move on to the next person that forever you have any prize possessions, perhaps a collection of baseball cards or were coins or maybe it's that fancy new car of the driveway. But whatever your favorite position may be one day you'll have to leave it behind. The saying is true. Everything will take with us when we die is our relationships today here in connect with Skip weekend edition skip. Isaac continues her latest series from the edge of eternity will find out why that's a good thing.
But before we get started today. Here's all the info about our connect with resources month the biography of God does God exist, and if he dies.
Is it possible to know your answer to those two questions shapes how you see the world skip.
I think once wrestled with those very questions himself, you know, I've been teaching the Bible for over three decades before I became a Christian and when I was new to the faith. I studied science and philosophy alongside the Bible as I studied, I grew confident that God does exist. And yes, we can know in the biography of God.
The brand-new book by skip, I think you learn to remove the limits you may have placed on your idea of who God is. Everything changes when you acknowledge and believe that God is who he says he hears biography of God is our way to thank you when you give $35 or more today to help expand this vital teaching outreach to more people request your copy when you give online securely connect with.com/offer or call 892 to 1888 if you're following along today.
You want to turn to first Thessalonians chapter 4 as we join Pastor Skip to wrap up this message. Most important thing to remember sketchy is that you will be fully conscious in the relationship gets really good. However, you imagine, that is how you imagine not. Perhaps the moment you die you will see angels escorting you into God's presence because in Luke chapter 16 the story Jesus gave of the rich man and the beggar Lazarus says the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham's bosom. Maybe you'll see that the moment of your death. Perhaps at the moment of your death. You'll hear Jesus call your name and maybe you'll see him as he stands to receive you in his presence.
When Stephen was being pelted with stones before he died in acts chapter 7 he said look I see the heavens open and Jesus standing at the right hand of the father welcoming him in heaven maybe O'Hare and call your name because Jesus said in John chapter 10 I am the good shepherd.
I know my sheep. They hear my voice and I will call them by name what could be cooler than that for you to hear the Lord Jesus Christ. Announce your name as you enter into his presence. Hi, I heard of a pastor who had a friend and the friend lost his wife and the pastor came up to his friend and said, I'm so sorry I heard that you lost your wife and the demand turned to the pastor and smiled and said come on Pastor you know better than that, something is lost when you know where it is.
She's not lost. I didn't lose her. I know what you meant by that, but I know exactly where she is. That's the most important truth. The third truth.
Here the brings assurance to the believer is what death leads to. It leads to resurrection. Look at verse 15 and 16 for this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.
Keep in mind Paul is writing to the Thessalonians who thought, oh what about my loved ones who died to miss out when Jesus comes back to sink how they will miss anything for the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel with the trumpet of God and the dead in Christ will rise. There's the resurrection will rise.
So when Jesus comes back for the church. Recall that the rapture that will be the resurrection day for the dead believers in Christ. That's resurrection and it will be transformation day for all those who have died are alive and that listen to Paul's writing in Philippians 320 and 21 he says for our citizenship. Literally our politics is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to his glorious body, according to the working by which he is able to subdue all things to himself. I don't if you agree with Paul's description about your body, as we called it will transform our lowly body now, you may not agree with that but I'll daresay the older you get, you'll start nodding more and more with text of Scripture, legacy – think he had a right especially when you think where it's going to end up in the resurrection. He's in a transform our lowly body into his glorious body ever see extreme makeover. This is the ultimate extreme makeover, your body will be totally change of the resurrection and it says here in our text, that the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a shout member wimp when the Lord stood before the tomb of Lazarus.
He didn't whisper did and say*it's me. He shouted Lazarus come forth. Why did he shout because Lazarus was dead and he could now it's not why he did it. He did it to announce the event for the presence of everyone standing around.
This will be a shout from heaven. So here's the sequence at the coming of the Lord for the church. The rapture, the first thing that will happen is all those who have died in past history who are believers in Christ at that moment will be a resurrection. That's where they are joined to their newly redone body immediately after that event and probably almost simultaneous to immediately afterwards will be a total physical transformation of believers who are alive. It's like a transformational resurrection about having the God for those who are alive, so a combination of the descending Lord from heaven in the ass sending saints on earth.
First Corinthians 15 verse 51 through 53 no first 2015 will be a passage will look at more in the future.
But let me just what your appetite because you gotta pull in a lot of these to understand Paul's and the Lord's theology on these truths. Paul writes this I tell you a mystery.
We shall not shall not all sleep, which means die.
I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed. I hear there's a church somewhere that has that over there nursery, we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, but that is not what it's referring to at all in this facet. He continues in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed for this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality mansion. What what's what's included in these verses the earth and the sea building up the desk. The particles of all of the dead who've ever died, who are believers in Christ, and that transforming miracle whereby all of those particles are transformed into a body that will see no death, no sickness, no pain, no disease, and then a quick space trip up to heaven were always with the Lord, all in the twinkling of an eye. That's the resurrection that we look forward to. There were a couple guys who were raised in the jungles of Indonesia. They had never seen a large city before they had never been to America, they were saved by a couple of missionaries went there they brought these guys back to New York City imagining managing the raise in the jungles and seeing New York for the first time so that they walk into large hotel they'd never seen an elevator.
They do see these doors open up and these two elderly women walked to the doors of the elevator. The doors close the to see they go into a room and then the numbers move up and back and then five minutes later the doors open again and I walked to young beautiful girls they'd never seen this before. So imagine what their thinking the guy turns to the other guy and said hello man we got to bring our lives to writing.machine. Now you don't will all have an extreme makeover at the resurrection coming of the Lord in all of this again go back to verse 14. All of this is based upon what already happened.
The death burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead because he raised will be raised. Our bodies will also be raised and totally totally transformed. I read something that was a very helpful analogy to me. Maybe it will be to you. There was a scientist working in his lab and he had a beaker of very strong acid as he was working and there was a beaker of acid on the table and object made out of silver fell into the acid and it immediately dissolved so the scientist placed some chemical compound into that solution and after period of time. All the particles of silver came together at the bottom of the vase in the formless mass he drain the beaker washed off the silver and send it to a silversmith where he reconstructed it made it a beautiful shiny silver goblet total change from those existing materials. That is a good illustration really of the resurrection, what will happen to our bodies as they get reconstituted resurrected exchanging the old for the new, more on that later. Look at verse 17. Here's the fourth truth that brings assurance it's going to end in a beautiful reunion. Verse 17 then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Notice those words together with them who's the them. Those with died and are now resurrected.
Those who are alive. Let's say the Lord comes back tomorrow.
All of that instantaneous change occurs and then your to gather with them.
No wonder he writes in verse 18 comfort one another with these words, there's going to be a reunion with your father who's in God's presence today or your mother was in God's presence today are your brothers or your children in your heart is been aching so long because you miss them so much. You will see them again if they are believers in Christ and you are a believer in Christ. I love the story.
It's in Luke chapter 7 where Jesus is in the little town called name and there's a son of a widow who dies and Jesus goes to the town raises the boy from the dead, then it says Jesus presented the boy to the mother. I think he took great delight in that tender here. Here's the reunion here's your son back.
You can now enjoy life together. Jesus will have that same tender ministry in heaven of reuniting families and spouses and friends together so death is the great separator. But Jesus is the great reunite her. What a great thought. I was thinking this week and I mean this one of the greatest things in heaven that I minute when joy is being with you without limitation.
You know we get to connect sometimes after service in exchange allowance pray for one another, but then we have to go home or will there is another service to do but there will be home we can hang out for two, 300,000 million billion years, and move on to the next person because we got forever just endless joy in that reunion brings up a question that I what I want to address here before we close it is often asked, especially as we think through all of these choose we've heard so far, spirit or soul leaves the body were in God's presence with Zach to be like in here comes the inevitable question. Will we recognize each other in heaven.
We recognize each other in heaven after all Jesus said in heaven. There's not marrying are given in marriage, but were like the angels will discuss what that means. At a later date. We recognize each other in heaven or remember when Jesus, Moses and Elijah were transfigured before the disciples and Peter, James and John were there to see it.
Did they recognize Moses and Elijah, though they'd been dead 900 years yet instantly, intuitively, they did. I don't think Moses wore a name tag or Elijah. Elijah, I don't think Jesus had to give a formal introduction, Moses, Peter, Peter, Elijah, I don't think he had to do that. There just this intuitive knowledge in that event, and I believe in heaven.
On the other side of this earthly existence.
Since we have such limited knowledge. Now, our knowledge will be greatly expanded so that will immediately know those that we've known pick up where we left off, and recognize others who we've heard about but have not yet met. And that's because in first Corinthians 13 verse 12 Paul writes for now we see through a glass darkly, but then face-to-face. Now I know in part but I shall fully know is the translation even as I am fully known. I've always loved. I think he did it the best. The way Charles Spurgeon answered this very question. Someone came up to him and said Mr. Spurgeon will we recognize each other in heaven, and he simply said what you think in heaven will be more stupid than we are now. If you can do it here and now, don't you think in heaven you'll have at least that same ability. Well, there is great assurance and confidence and enough as it says in verse 18 comfort one another with these words. I like to close with a story. Philip Yancey likens death to birth in a very inventive way. Listen to what he says.
Each of our individual deaths rights Yancey can be seen as a birth. Imagine what it would be like if you had full consciousness as a fetus and could remember those sensations.
Your world is dark safe, secure your bay and warm liquid cushioned from shock you do nothing for yourself you are set automatically in a murmuring heartbeat assures you that someone larger than you fills all of your needs, your life consists of simple waiting. Not sure what to wait for but any change seems far away and scary you meet no sharp objects. There is no pain, no threatening adventures. It's a fine existence. But one day you feel a tug.
The walls are falling in on you those soft cushions are now pulsing and beating against you, crushing you downwards. Your body is bent double your limbs twisted and retched your falling upside down for the first time in your life you feel pain you're in a sea of rolling matter.
There's more pressure almost too intense to bear your head is squeezed flat and you are pushed harder and harder into a dark tunnel. Oh, the pain, the noise, more pressure you heard all over you hear a groaning sound and an awful sudden sheet of fear rushes through you. It's happening, your world is collapsing, you're sure it's the end. Then you Skip piercing, blinding light and cold rough hands pulling you in a painful slap. Congratulations he writes you have just been born rights Yancey death is like that on this end of the birth canal. It seems fearsome pretentious and full of pain. Death is a scary tunnel and we are being sucked toward it by a powerful force really brilliant description of death because to up to us to a child about to be born. What is birth and wonderful life must seem horrible and cold and foreign painful but then life so it is in our death, which seems painful will give birth to immediate full satisfying relationship with Christ future resurrection of our body and reunion with those we miss. No wonder one another. Whether so much comfort for believers in Jesus's that's a warm reminder will all hold close to our hearts today. This is connect was Weekend edition the message you heard today was titled view from death's door.
Just one of 17 teachings from the age of eternity series, you can pick up all 17 messages on CD for only $39 plus shipping order now firstname.lastname@example.org when you call us at 1-800-922-1888, and as we finish up today. Let's take a moment to discuss today's topic with Skip and his wife Lenny in studio now let you Skip today. He reminded us, and the most amazing part of having at least that's what so many of us look forward to that.
Have a faith and have seen friends or family pass and that is seeing a loved one. Again, being with the people that we have missed and that you can't take things to happen.
Can you even can't take any property through you really can't take someone with you as much as you might like to. We can't take relationships, they have to come to Christ and dad to be there with us in heaven.
So how can we intentionally cultivate relationships that are at witness to friends and family so that they could be with us in heaven you'd hit the nail on the head. First of all we need to share our faith with them and hopefully they'll receive the Savior that were talking about a no and that's that's why we live with the inks that we live with. We we have a joy, but we have this kind of knowing, knowing that there are people out there that don't know Jesus Christ. Some of our own family members. Some of our dearest friends, people that we go to the store and see when were shopping and and that should provoke us enough to somehow want to expose them to the gospel because without the gospel of salvation. They won't be in heaven.
But then beyond that. Let's assume the people in your circle that were talking about all believers you want to edify them you want to prepare them in a sense, for heaven beyond just getting them saved you want them to enjoy the comfort and the fellowship with the Lord. And yes, heaven is going to be a reunion with those whom we love, and who knew Christ and passed away such as everyone that we love will be in heaven but it's everyone who knew Christ that we love will be in heaven so there will be a reunion with those people and and it's interesting because you even asking the question, I think it's true that a lot of people see that a sort of the paramount experience of heaven would be reunited.
Note the paramount experience in heaven will be the reunion will be the union that we have with Christ to see them for the first time in like face-to-face, eyeball to eyeball and be in the presence of God and get overwhelmed in that theater that arena of the saints and angels worshiping him it's gonna be so magnificent. The only way we could do that and be equipped to do that is to die and get a new constitution to be able to handle it. So that's where death does us a favor. Well, thanks a lot for that skipper lamia and remember to add, Skip your social media accounts for regular updates and a hub for all that is in connect with God, what happens between death and the resurrection of our bodies will consider that next time. Skip begins this teaching rolling from glory connect was weekend edition is a presentation of connection so you guys never changing and ever-changing time