Everyone knows that when we die, it’s lights out. Finish. Nothing more. You just cease to exist. Total cessation of life.

But is that really true ?

In fact that is just fantasy; wishful thinking. It’s the thinking of a Materialist culture which teaches that life is only a collection of atoms. We are a chemical construct; all is explained by chemistry and physics.

In fact, that is not true.

I say that because all the evidence from near death experiences witnesses the existence of an after life.

Scientific enquiry tells us this is true.

Granted, Natural Science itself does not necessarily agree; that is because natural science concerns only the material world; it’s worldview is limited to the physical and material we can see, touch and experiment on.

But the scientific method  has revealed otherwise.

Scientific method posits a hypothesis and then proceeds to test that hypothesis empirically. In plain language, come up with an idea and then test it out with practical experiments. So in this instance, you go and ask people who have technically died, but then returned to life, what they experienced.

The results shock the medical world, and natural scientists cannot explain it. That’s because they have a limited worldview – they have a very limited model of understanding of how this world operates.

Time and again, people who have died say:

  • they leave their physical body and float above it
  • they then observe all that is happening to their body as if they are another person standing in the room
  • they begin to move towards a tunnel with a light at the end
  • often they have an overwhelming sense of love and acceptance
  • many report an awareness of all knowledge and understanding

What they are witnessing is that the soul leaves the body and begins on a journey in the spiritual dimension – that dimension which  actually determines what happens in the physical world we know, see, touch and experience.

So when Jesus Christ says that he is the Resurrection and the life in the eleventh chapter and verse 25 of John’s Gospel in the New Testament, I accept that.

I accept his claim that he was resurrected after dying on the cross.

I accept his claim that he died there in my place, for my sins.

I accept that he has gone to the right hand of God the Father and that he will one day return to judge all who have ever lived – because he will resurrect them to a Day of Final Judgement.

Because he is the Resurrection and the Life.

The Evangelist John records these words of Jesus Christ when he spoke with Martha about her brother Lazarus who had been dead for 4 days:

I am the resurrection and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live. And whosoever liveth and and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this ?

John then records how Jesus went to Lazarus’ tomb and actually called him forth from the dead.

This was typical of Jesus. He did not just perform miracles to do a miracle. He performed miracles to illustrate or confirm what he taught. Because what he taught has the power to transmit resurrection life to us.

When I heard the gospel message of life in Jesus Christ because of who he is and what he has done, I believed it.

And believing it, I became aware that I must act on it.

So,  I told people that I now believed in Jesus Christ.

But that was not the end of it.

On hearing about full immersion baptism in water, I became aware that I must be baptised by full immersion in water, as Christ commanded and as the apostles taught.

My awareness was not an overwhelming feeling or sensation, but a simple knowing that this was the next step.

In this connection there are certain simple truths we need to understand.

James in his short letter in the New Testament tells us a fundamental and vital truth. In chapter 2 he says that faith without action is meaningless. That we must demonstrate what we believe by acting on it. If we don’t, then our believing is lifeless – dead – useless.

And the apostle Paul points out another important truth that faith is a gift of God – and it comes from hearing the message of Jesus Christ [Romans chapter 10].

Jesus Christ himself tells us in chapter 14 of John’s Gospel that

If a man [meaning human being] love me, he will keep my words [ie his teaching] and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him and make our abode with him.

And he does.

But this is for those who love Jesus, and they show that love by being obedient to what he says.

So when he commands us to be baptised, we obey.

To often, however, this essential first command is belittled or explained away.

But the evidence for it is overwhelming. For example, the Great Commission stated in Matthew 28, verses 18 to 20 is clear, as is the rendering of it in Mark’s Gospel, chapter 16, verse 16.

Baptism is essential. It’s a first step of obedience; God servants are charged to carry it out.

But what happens in baptism. Why is it so important ?

In Romans chapter 6 and in Colossians chapter 2, the apostle Paul explains that baptism identifies us with the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Going down into the waters identifies with his death, while coming up again identifies with his resurrection from the dead. For the believer that death and resurrection concern the burial of their old selfish life, and  rising again in the new, resurrection life of Jesus Christ.

The apostle Peter in his first letter and chapter 2 tells us this is essential. And Jesus himself says in the third chapter of John’s gospel that we must be born of water and of the spirit.

Obedience to what God commands is self evident. How can anyone claim to be a Christian who does not obey this primary and essential command, knowing what it means and why it should be done ?

God’s grace is shown to us in Jesus Christ. God’s grace is shown to us when he causes his message to come to us. God’s grace is shown to us when he causes us to believe that message. And God’s grace is sealed to us when we respond and act on his command.


By Christianity

The personal icon photograph shows God's creation, the world. It reminds us that God is the Creator of all - the almighty, the all knowing and all present - the one who is most important of all. The one to whom we owe all, and the one to whom we will answer for all. The site's header image of the Bible [King James Authorised Version], a map, a light and a compass represent to us that God's word in the Bible is our spiritual map, illumination and guide through this life. Those who obey his teaching will know his presence and power - Gospel of John, chapter 14, verse 23

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