The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe...
"Death: a Shadow"
In the first twinkling moment a born again believer passes from this life into the direct spiritual presence of God, we will wonder how we ever felt even the slightest uncertainty about our journey "through the valley of the shadow of death" (Psalm 23:4).
Certainly we understand the potential for trepidation. We still live in fleshly temples susceptible to the temptation of fear. However, we do well to realize that being afraid of death is a temptation.
"Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage" (Hebrews 2:14-15).
"God hath not given unto us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind" (II Timothy 1:7).
Any time and every time we feel fear of death, we do well to decisively affirm within our hearts, "No! I will not succumb to this devilish, worldy, and fleshly enticement! The Lord Jesus died and rose again to deliver me from being afraid of the death to which Scripture refers to as a mere "shadow." He also gave me the Holy Spirit, with His power, love, and a sound mind. So, no matter what I feel, this is where I stand: Christ is my peace about this matter no less than He is my peace in all things. This is truth, this is reality, and this is where I stand. I will not be afraid of a shadow!"
The Lord Jesus trampled sin, hell, and the grave under His nail-pierced feet when He exited His tomb in triumph. In light of such victory, we must refuse to fear any enemy He so victoriously conquered. Again, the issue is not what we feel, but what we choose within our Christ-inhabited hearts to believe. Is the Savior risen from the dead? Does He reign as the risen Christ who promises to journey with us through the valley of the shadow? Let us answer these questions in the light of Scripture, and then let the peace of God's promise of life fill our hearts with assurance. Yes, we can be tempted to fear death. But we cannot be forced to live in the darkness of the devil's lie that death is something of which to be afraid. The first twinkling moment in the glorious presence of the Savior will confirm the Psalmist's exultant cry…
"Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For Thou art with me."
"So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?"
(I Corinthians 15:54-55)
Weekly Memory Verse
"Thou art a God ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness."