Summary: The wonderful things a committed believer gains at death.
For me to Live is Christ, To Die is Gain
INTRO: In our passage Paul was struggling between desires;
1) To go on the heaven and be with Christ.
2) To stay here on earth to be with loved ones.
I suppose that every Christian eventually faces such a struggle. You see there are two different desires and two different perspectives every time a loved one goes on to be with the Lord.
From our perspective it seems like such a loss. We speak of “loosing a loved one”. There is usually so much that is left unsaid. We would trade so much for just one hour together again. But From God’s Perspective, for the committed Christian; To Die Is Gain.
A committed believer, at death gains…
1. A Better Body 2 Cor. 4:16-5:2
“For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:”
(1 Cor 15:53) "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality."
2. A Better Home: (John 14:1-3)
"Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also."
“This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through,
My treasures are laid up, somewhere beyond the blue;
The angels beckon me, from Heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.:
3. A Better Inheritance (Rom 8:14-18)
"For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us."
4. A Better Fellowship (1 Cor 13:12-13)
"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity."
Unhindered by human limitations, unmarred by misunderstandings, there we will be able to read in the eyes and hearts, that which we could never quite express here.
To die is gain, only if you live for Christ. If you live for money, security, family or fame, then to die is a terrible loss.
“Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”
“My Father’s way may twist and turn,
My heart may throb and ache,
But in my soul, I’m glad I know,
He maketh no mistake.
My cherished plans man go astray,
My hopes may fade away,
But still I’ll trust my Lord to lead,
For He doth know the way.
Thought night by dark and it may seem,
That day will never break;
I’ll pin my faith, my all in Him,
He maketh no mistake.
There’s so much now I cannot see,
My eyesights far too dim;
But come what may, I’ll simply trust,
And leave it all to him.
For by and by the mist will lift,
And plain it all He’ll make.
Through all the way, though dark to me,
He made not one mistake.”
A. M. Overton