Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives. For assuredly He does not give help to angels, but He gives help to the descendant of Abraham. Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For since He Himself was tempted in that which He has suffered, He is able to come to the aid of those who are tempted.
– Hebrews 2:14-18 NASB (emphasis added)
The last few days we’ve thought about various forms of fear (anxiety, worry, fretfulness, apprehension, etc.) and how God wants us to seek a zero-tolerance policy. In the passage above, we see the concrete action God took to remove the root of the most fundamental fear of human existence: death.
When God tells us “fear not,” He is not just commanding us. He has acted, or has promised to act, in a way that removes any reason for fear about the matter at hand. That is, He has removed the basis or reason for fear so that we can – with good reason – obey His exhortation to “fear not.”
This is certainly the case when it comes to death. God could have simply told us not to fear death, but He didn’t stop there. He actually came to live as one of us on earth. He experienced all the things a human being experiences – including death. When He rose from the dead, He gave us reason to believe that resurrection from death was His plan. So, when God tells us not to be afraid or worried about dying, His resurrection from the dead is a good reason for doing what He says.
Recall the very first scripture we meditated in these daily devotions:
For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
– Philippians 1:21 NASB
Getting over your fundamental fear of death is an important first step toward driving away your remaining fears. Remember: “to die is gain.”
(Remember that prayer is more about listening than talking. Use the words below to start yourself, but then allow time to reflect more on the Scripture above before you say the “Amen.” During that time of quiet reflection, let God shape your thoughts and wait for a sense of peace to come. That’s your signal to say “Amen” and go forth to the day.)
Lord, help me to settle the issue of what happens when I die so that I can learn to stop worrying about lesser things….(this is where you remain quiet in order to let Him work in your thoughts)… Amen.