John 3:16 – For God so love the world that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not died but have Life Eternal.
In order to really grasp the above verse, one must first understand and accept what death is/is not. The dictionary says death is permanent cessation of all vital functions; the end of life. This is true as it stands. We breathe our last breath, the electrical impulses in our brain end, and voila! – we are pronounced dead. That’s it. That is what many people believe. You live. You die. Period. You turn to ashes and dust in the coffin, never to be again.
But what about the thing that makes you who you are? What about the spark? Does that cease to exist too? I believe it does not. I believe your soul – the spark – goes on into an eternity that is decided by each individual while they are living and breathing. It is hard for me to understand why people don’t believe that. While I agree with the dictionary, there is more to death than a cessation of life. Death, that which God the Son trampled down, is separation from God.
St. John in his Gospel records Jesus’ prayer for us in verse 3, And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent. Everyone, no matter what they believed while living, will live in eternity. Everyone’s knee will bow to the God Who is the True God and Jesus His Son who was sent by Him. The question is will they inherit Eternal Life?
To inherit Eternal Life Jesus responded to the lawyer’s answer of loving God with all your heart, mind and soul and your neighbor as yourself with “…do this and live….”
God the Father draws people to and teaches people about His Son, Jesus Christ. It is the Son who will raise them up in the last day (John 6: 43-51, 53-65; 17:6-8). It is the Son will will be the Judge of those who will inherit Eternal Life and who will not.
No matter what you think now in the land of living, know this – there is an eternity. Decide now how it will be spent.