when Jesus had cried out...in a loud voice,
he gave up his spirit. At that moment
the curtain of the temple was torn in
two....The earth shook and the rocks split.
The tombs broke open and the bodies of
many holy people who had died were raised
said: “I am the resurrection and
the life. He who believes in me will live,
even though he dies.
people do not realize that they become
eternal beings the moment they are conceived
in their mother’s womb.1
At that point, it is too late to turn
back the clock. Eternal existence has
some would think we cease to exist as
persons when our bodies die. According
to the Bible, however, this is not true.
Your physical body is the house in which
your soul and spirit reside.2
When your body dies, you continue to exist.
But the question is, where will your soul
and spirit go when they leave your body?
Bible says that we are born with a spiritual
condition that is dead toward God due
We are dead in our relationship to God.
If we die in this condition, we will “perish”
forever—suffering a conscious existence
of torment in the lake of fire, forever
separated from God’s life and presence.4
thank God, there is hope! The moment we
receive Christ, He makes our spirits alive.
Jesus puts into us His life and His nature.
We actually become a “new creation,”
“born again” into an
alive spiritual existence.5
Then, when we die, we will continue to
live eternally with God.
does this happen? Scripture teaches that
“the life of a creature is in the
We have learned that one of the principles
upon which biblical sacrifice rests is
this: Sin is transferred to a substitute,
and, in turn, the life (and innocence)
of the substitute is transferred to the
sinner. It was upon this principle that
Jesus shed His sinless blood on the cross
as our substitute, and thereby transferred
His eternal life (and righteousness) to
What Happens When We Become “Born-Again”?
the life of God’s Spirit enters
our lives, He awakens our spirits toward
God. We begin to respond to Him with a
hunger and a thirst for God’s presence,
for only in Him is fullness of joy and
perfect contentment found. That “God-shaped
vacuum” within each of us that Blaise
Pascal wrote of is now filled by Him.
We develop an appetite for the Bible,
God’s written Word, which is the
food that will nourish our spirits.8
Truth is revealed by the Holy Spirit,
and our spiritual blindness gradually
starts to lift. The desire to pray and
to communicate with God begins to grow.
longing to please God is demonstrated
by a desire to obey God and to do His
will. We begin to hate evil and to love
what is righteous and good. The fruit
of the Spirit starts to grow and is produced
in our lives.9
The power of the Holy Spirit is manifested
through our witness, our spiritual gifts,
our serving others, and our giving of
ourselves and our possessions. All these
things are the direct result of Christ’s
life now working in us. Our spirits have
been made alive to God! We have been regenerated.
At death—if Jesus does not return
first—we will go directly to live
with the Lord until the final resurrection.
Then we will be given new bodies prepared
for eternal life with Him. In the unimaginably
glorious new heavens and new earth that
God has promised, God “will
wipe every tear from their eyes. There
will be no more death or mourning or crying
or pain”—only joy and
peace in His wonderful presence. 10
long is eternity? Imagine a great bird
that could fly nonstop without ever needing
to rest. Let us say that it were possible
for this bird to fly to the planet Jupiter
at one mile per hour. Let’s pretend
that God gave this huge bird an assignment:
“Take every grain of sand from planet
Earth to Jupiter—one at
this huge bird as it takes the first grain
of sand in its beak and begins to flap
its enormous wings. Envision it lifting
off the ground and flying upward and upward
until it disappears into the sky. It arrives
44,520 years later at Jupiter—a
distance of 390 million miles from earth—and
upon landing, drops the first grain of
sand onto the planet. Then immediately,
it makes the return trip to Earth—a
round-trip of 780 million miles, or 89,040
years, for just one grain of sand.
many years would it take to transport
every single grain of sand off the face
of the earth in this manner? Whatever
it is, it would not even scratch the surface
of eternity. When the bird returns from
taking the last grain of sand to Jupiter,
eternity would still be as long as it
was when he had left with the first grain
Because every person will spend this eternity
either with God in heaven or without Him
in hell, it is eternally and critically
important that we prepare to go to heaven.
Like planning for any trip, we need to
make decisions and preparations. However,
many of us give little thought or planning
to where we will travel once our bodies
die. Where will your soul and spirit go
when your body is dead?
Bible says that we will either go directly
to heaven or directly to hell when we
leave our bodies.
you given any thought to where you are
going? If not, let’s think about
it for a moment. The road map is simple.
The Bible says that we are on one of two
roads—the wide road leading to hell
or the narrow road leading to heaven.
Choose which route you will take.
can you take with you? Nothing tangible
of course, but there are things you will
be taking into the next life. According
to Christ’s true account of the
rich man who went to hell, we will retain
our memory and recognition of others,
as well as our ability to see, hear, reason,
speak, and sense things.12
We will also take
our relationships with us, and a record
of the things we have done and said—later
to be judged.13
you made a reservation for heaven, yet?
If not, you can do so by calling on Christ
and becoming a child of God. The only
payment that will allow us admittance
into heaven is Christ’s payment.
He is also the only door through which
we can enter.14
standing on the brink of death, a believer
has the assurance of Christ’s promise
that angels will be there to carry him
over death’s waters to heaven’s
shore, so that he can live with Christ
forever in that glorious land.15
In anticipation, true Christians will
live their lives with faith in that promise,
in God’s character, and in the Bible.
we are born, we will exist forever. The
question is, “Where?” If you
want to have the certainty that you will
live forever in heaven, turn to page 161
at the back of this book for a prayer
to guide you in securing your eternity
has given us eternal life, and this life
is in His Son. He who has the Son has
life; he who does not have the Son of
God does not have life.”16
LIFE - A TREASURE FROM THE CROSS
Jeremiah 1:4-5; Psalm 139:13-16;
Luke 1:13-15, 36, 39-44
2. 1 Thessalonians 5:23; Hebrews
4:12; Matthew 10:28
3. Ephesians 2:1-5; Colossians
4. Revelation 20:11-15; John 5:24,
28-29; John 3:16
5. 2 Corinthians 5:17; John 3:3-5
6. Leviticus 17:11
7. John 17:1-3, 24; Romans 6:
8. John 6:63; Deuteronomy 8:1-3
9. Galatians 5:22-24
10. Revelation 21:1-4; John 10:27-29
11. Matthew 7:13-14
12. Luke 16:19-31
13. 2 Corinthians 5:10; Matthew
12:36-37; 16:26-27; Revelation
14. John 14:6; 10:1-9
15. Luke 16:22
16. 1 John 5:11-13