“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” ( Phil. 1:21). What striking words! The Muslim would not say, “to me to live is Mohammed”, and the Buddhist would not say, “To me to live is Buddha,” nor would the Hindu say, “To me to live is Krishna.” They would look to their rules of conduct, and manuals of meditation, and visits to their temples and mosques where they go through prescribed rites”: “I do such and such,” they would say. But the Christian looks away from himself and his attainments, and away from any ceremonies that he has experienced – baptism, confirmation, communion. He looks away from his feelings, and also from the group he belongs to. He refuses to affirm that living means feeding the hungry and helping the homeless. No matter how noble the cause might be the ministry of mercy is not ‘life’ for the Christian. “For to me to live is Christ.”….
And what is death – that awesome and yet certain event that lies before every Christian? Death must also mean Christ to us. Christ once for all and finally possessed and eternally enjoyed. To everyone whose life is Christ, death is gain! You lose death and gain eternal life. You lose this fallen world, but you gain the glories of heaven. You lose a prison and you gain a palace. You lose the life of never beholding Christ and you gain a permanent sight of him. You temporarily lose the companionship of some friends in Christ to regain the companionship of those who have died in Christ. You lose your sin to gain sinlessness. You lose your doubts to gain infallible assurance. You lose pain to gain total bliss. You lose sickness to gain eternal health. You lose every personal animosity to gain everlasting brotherhood….. You lose weariness, heartache and disappointment to gain the fulfillment of the love of all the saints and angels and Jesus himself. You lose your warped imaginations for eternal purity. You lose the flickering candle and walk into the dawn of an endless day.–Geoff Thomas
Lakeway Baptist Church
5801 FM 1960 E
Humble, TX. 77346