I’ve heard people say, “I’m not afraid of death because I’m confident that I’m going to heaven; it’s the dying process that scares me!” Yes, as Christians, we look forward to heaven but may be afraid of dying. We need not be ashamed to admit that. It is natural to be afraid of the pain that comes with dying, of being separated from our loved ones, of possibly impoverishing our families, and of regret over missed earthly opportunities.
Why don’t Christians need to be afraid of death? Because Jesus was raised from the grave, and we who are in Christ will also be raised. That is why in 1 Corinthians 15:56-57, Paul proclaimed: “The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The dying process itself is but an escort that ushers us into eternity with God. As we “walk through the valley of the shadow of death,” we can have this confidence from God’s Word: “You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me” (Ps. 23:4). The picture here is of the Lord coming alongside us, giving comfort and direction as He escorts us through the dark valley to the “house of the Lord.” There we will dwell with Him forever (v.6).
Stepping out safe on that shore,
Sadness and suffering over,
Dwelling with Christ evermore! —Anon.