A FRESH PERSPECTIVE ON LIFE, DEATH AND HEALING

A FRESH PERSPECTIVE ON LIFE, DEATH AND HEALING

Whenever massive tragedies occur that result in colossal death tolls, many people wonder how it is possible for a good and loving God to allow such pain to occur. In some religions, where different gods are in-charge of different areas, it is often easier to reconcile that disjoint. After all, the one who did the killing must have been the god in-charge of war, or after-life recruitment.

And this is not limited to occasions when there are massive numbers of deaths either. We are often perplexed and angry when our prayers for healing don’t get answered; when our fervent prayers for healing get answered with a worsening condition. And at that time, we feel like throwing in the towel and telling God to His face, ‘You Suck!’

But what if there is another explanation? What if there is another side to the death and healing coin? What if being snatched from the jaws of death and being healed of a medical condition is not really the best thing? How would resurrection and healing look like from the perspective of those who are departing?

Now this is not a new concept, really. There have been enough movies made about people who have gone up to heaven, met the gate-keeping saints and told that it was not their time. Can you imagine their disappointment? So it is not an altogether foreign notion to consider that sometimes death may be better than life.

“We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:8

Think about this. Pilgrims make pilgrimage in the hope of being close to God. They head to locations which are considered holy, where God is considered to be residing, much like Mount Sinai was for Israel during the time of Moses.

Now, if they pass on through some unfortunate incident, they would be crossing over closer to God, wouldn’t they? So they would be closer to paradise, wouldn’t they? So in reality, death wouldn’t be such a bad thing, would it? Sure, the suffering they must have gone through must have been immense and the families that were left behind must be in great pain, but it wouldn’t have been any less painful for the family if the passing happened in any other way, means or form, would it?

You know, we usually only look at healing and resurrection from our point of view. I mean, consider the words of Mary,

“Then, when Mary came where Jesus was, and saw Him, she fell down at His feet, saying to Him, “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.”” John 11:32
But think about Lazarus’ condition from his point of view. This young man was a believer. He put his trust in Jesus and so he was now a child of God, for

“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:12-13

So the moment Lazarus passed on, he would have been in Heaven.

Now, imagine being told, in Heaven, ‘hey, your time is not up, Jesus is about to resurrect you.’ Can you imagine how Lazarus would have been feeling? After all, this is what Heaven is like.

“Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”” Revelation 21:1-4
And now that he actually had a taste of Heaven, he was going to go back down again? And after he had tasted death, he was going to have to go through all that again? I can’t imagine Lazarus being very pleased.

In the recent rendition of Hercules, there was one character who believed that the hero’s death that he was destined to die had to happen under a certain circumstance. Now, when the time came for him to die, Hercules blocked the arrow that was supposed to kill him and so he was saved. And his response to Hercules? ‘What are you doing, that was my time to die?!’ Ever met anyone like that?

I know an old man who, after his wife passed on, harbored a deep desire to join her as soon as he could. In fact, so deep was his desire, it actually manifested in physical symptoms and his health deteriorated. Now, can you imagine how he would feel if he was constantly being brought back from the brink of death by the doctors?

Beloved, death and illness are painful things from which we always pray that we and our loved ones be spared from suffering. Yet, if death should happen, if healing be denied, it is not because God was not listening, it is not because our Father does not love you enough to answer. Look at the situation from the point of view of our dearly departed and consider what death means for them at that point. For truly, because we have put our faith in Jesus,

“We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.” 2 Corinthians 5:8

For didn’t Jesus say to the thief He was being executed with,

“Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” Luke 23:43

No healing would have provided the same respite that death gave for that man. So similarly, death for us is not something that needs to be feared. For indeed, when we are absent from the body we are indeed present with the Lord in Paradise.

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