Friday, May 10, 2013

Is there life after death?

In 2005, after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, Steve Jobs gave a commencement speech at Stanford University in which he said: “No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it.” And there implied is the fear-filled question of unbelievers: is there life after death?

But, having come face-to-face with the possibility of my own sooner-than-later departure (also due to pancreatic cancer), I have pondered how many who call themselves ‘born-again’ believers are afraid of death.  I know that you who read this blog called “Dying to Live” share my strong conviction that there is no life on earth for us without our participation in Christ’s death and resurrection.  We only live because He died.  We only live when we die—to the realm of sin and self. Paul states it clearly, “we have died to this life, and our real life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col 3:3).

But I am afraid Steve Jobs was right. Even as people who want to go to heaven are afraid to die to get there, so too it is for Christians who have not understood they are already crucified with Christ, and can say I no longer live [I am dead to this world], but Christ lives in me (Gal 2:20). Is there life after death? You better believe it! And aren't you just dying to get it!


  1. Good morning Stan,
    And when does eternal life begin? I would posit that it does not begin at the end of life. I would assert that the abundant part of eternal life begins at the moment of saying yes to Jesus. And the experience of that abundance is the ongoing yes and yes and yes. Because a relationship is not "one and done," (fire insurance).
    In a conversation with a friend about the missionary work in Chad during the time of intense and fatal persecution of Christians there, I had confessed that I did not know if I could hold fast if it meant that those I loved would be either tortured or killed. His comment which still resonates with me, is that if you start with giving God 5 minutes of your day; and you continue to add and add more and more minutes until eventually you have learned how to give all but the last five minutes, when the enemy asks for the last five, you feel like it is only five, give it to God, and let go, trusting God for those five minutes. He said that is how one has peace in sacrificing their life to God. They have already given all but the last five minutes, so the last five minutes is a minor decision.
    I have found in my own life, that as much as I would like to believe (because it lets me off the hook somewhat) that God asks for faith steps that are too big, I realize that had I have been more obedient (and more full of faith to be faithful) in all of the little steps preceding the "big step," the big step is not such a big step. All of those little steps faithfully executed are "Christ in me, the hope of glory."
    Thank you.
    Larry Q

  2. What a beautiful sentiment and what a great philosophy of "dying to live."

    Greg (NOT Stan)