Hope Beyond the Grave

It is said death is one of the most frequently thought of subjects, BUT one of the least talked about. It surely is not in the top 10 of cheery thoughts. Since we all know we will inevitably experience it, it is good to have a healthy understanding of it. First, this confirmation. The good news that follows is predicated on having invested one’s faith in Jesus Christ as savior and seeking to obey and follow Him. By the resurrection dawn’s early light the grave became a symbol of heaven’s triumph.

Death’s night sky would be starless and its day hopeless were it not for Jesus’ exaltation, “I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore.” (Revelation 1: 18)

Victor Hugo voiced the hope with which many approach the grave. “When I go down to the grave I can say, like so many others: I have finished my work, but I cannot say I have finished my life. My day’s work will begin the next morning. My tomb is not a blind alley. It is a thoroughfare. It closes in the twilight to open in the dawn.”

The light of the world now shines to guild the mountaintops of our achievements and light the valley of the shadow of death.

In a moment, in the twinkling of the eye, we are transported from one life to another. The two lives are really not comparable. The second is so superior to our present one there is no way to compare them. Some people want to know minute details regarding it. Comfort and confidence enough can be gained by the sublime factor Jesus is there. If it is good enough for Him, it will be glorious and fulfilling for us.

Before Columbus, maps of the world off the coasts of England and Europe had written across the unknown sea, “Ne Plus Ultra,” meaning “No more beyond.” Further out in the sea were such inscriptions as, “Here be dragons.” These hope defeating giants were replaced after the voyage of Columbus with “Plus Ultra,” meaning “Much more beyond.”

Jesus’ coming out of the grave proves there is much more in the after-life.

An infinite blessing is found in that it is antithetical to the alternative, hell. The hell of hell is not found in the gory details it embodies, but in the fact Jesus is not there and His love is not to be enjoyed. Heaven offers hope, hell means despair. The Lord leaves the choice to us.

Revel in this reality: “Death is swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your sting? O Grave, where is your victory… Thanks be to God, which gives us the victory through our Lord….”

This turns people unable to cope into people of hope.