Video by Joyce Meyer Ministries

The cold wind howled outside the cottage window as the old man lay weak on his bed. He could feel the weight of his many years bearing down on his tired body.

The end was near, he knew. But what would come next? Where exactly was he going when he exhaled his final earthly breath?

The man had walked faithfully with God since childhood. He clung to the hope and promise that something greater awaited beyond the veil of death. But still, questions lingered in his mind, as they do for all of us.

“What will it feel like? Will it be instant, or a slow transition? Will there be angels to guide my soul?”

With weathered hands, he opened the leather-bound Bible resting on the nightstand. His eyes fell upon the familiar verses – words that had anchored his soul through both storms and sunny days.

“Let not your hearts be troubled…” the Savior’s voice whispered.

A peaceful smile crossed the man’s face as he slowly closed his eyes. He was ready. Eager, even.

One chapter was ending, but the next was just beginning. And it would be more glorious than he could imagine.

What the Bible Says About Death and The Afterlife

What the Bible Says About Death and The Afterlife

One of the most comforting truths of Christianity is that salvation comes through faith in Christ, not by your good works.

Ephesians 2:8-9 (NIV) says:

8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.”

Your soul will journey beyond death to an eternity with God not based on how good you were, but because you accepted Christ’s free gift of salvation while living on earth.

But although your salvation is secure through faith, the Bible is clear that there is a judgment for all people after death.

Hebrews 9:27 (ESV) tells us:

“It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment.”

And Romans 14:12 (ESV) confirms:

“So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.”

For those who are saved this judgment is not about heaven or hell. Rather, it is about the rewards believers will receive in heaven based on their works on earth.

1 Corinthians 3:10-15 (ESV) explains:

10 According to the grace of God given to me, like a skilled master builder I laid a foundation, and someone else is building upon it. Let each one take care how he builds upon it. 11 For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— 13 each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14 If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.”

So although heaven is secure for those who trust in Christ, your eternal reward will be based on how you lived your life on earth.

Were you building your life with materials that have eternal value and glorify God? Or were you more focused on worldly pleasures that burn away in the refining judgment of Christ?

As a Christian, this future judgment and potential loss of eternal rewards should motivate you to live purposefully now.

Heaven: A Place of Peace and Rest

Heaven: A Place of Peace and Rest

So what will heaven be like for those who trust in Christ? The Bible gives us glimpses of a place more wonderful than we can imagine.

Revelation 21:4 (ESV) promises:

“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

Heaven will be a place of eternal rest, with no more suffering or pain. We’ll dwell forever in God’s presence, surrounded by beauty, love, joy, and peace.

Some people have reported experiencing a taste of this heavenly peace during near-death experiences.

In 2 Corinthians 12:2-4, Paul tells of being “caught up to the third heaven” where he “heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter.”

Although the full glory of heaven surpasses our comprehension, those who have come near death often describe a profound sense of peace, love, and light, giving us a small glimpse into the joy that awaits all believers after life on this earth.

Why Christians Don’t Need to Fear Death

Video by The Gospel Coalition

As a Christian, you can look forward to the day when you pass away from this life into the next.

The process of dying may involve mourning and grief for those left behind. But for the believer, death represents a joyous reunion with Christ and the wonders of heaven.

The Apostle Paul said:

“My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.”

Philippians 1:23 (ESV)

And Jesus told his disciples:

1 Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also.”

John 14:1-3 (ESV)

As a believer, you can trust Jesus’ promise that he has prepared a place for you to join him after your earthly life comes to an end.

Your soul will transition into His presence, leaving behind the pain and troubles of this world.

Although death remains somewhat mysterious to us on earth, Christians trust what God has revealed in His Word about what comes next.

You can face death without fear, confident that the next chapter holds unimaginable joy in Christ’s presence.

How Then Should You Live?

How Then Should You Live?

If this life is only a temporary prelude to eternity with God, how should you live during your brief time on earth?

The Bible encourages believers to make the most of each day by pursuing godliness and serving others.

Romans 12:1 (ESV) urges:

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.”

You honor God when you turn from sin and seek to follow Jesus’ example of humility, kindness, and selfless love.

Rather than getting caught up in worldly pleasures and possessions, Christians should remember that this life is fleeting.

James 4:14 (ESV) reminds us:

“Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”

Knowing that death could come at any time, you should make each day count for eternity. Paul said:

“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.”

1 Corinthians 15:58 (ESV)

The legacy you will leave behind involves more than just a financial inheritance or earthly accomplishments.

It is founded on your love for God and service to others done out of reverence for Christ.

Key Takeaways

  • Salvation comes through faith alone, not good deeds.
  • There is a judgment after death but believers won’t be condemned.
  • Heaven will be free of all suffering and pain.
  • Your eternal rewards are based on how you live now.
  • Christians shouldn’t fear death but see it as transitioning to Jesus.
  • You should make the most of your brief life here on earth.
  • Life’s highest purpose is found in serving God and others.


Although the process of death remains a mystery, Christians can have confidence in what the Bible reveals about the afterlife.

For those who have accepted Christ’s free gift of salvation, the end of their earthly lives marks the beginning of eternal joy in God’s presence. And your life lived now in pursuit of God’s kingdom impacts your eternal rewards to come.

While the destination holds imperishable treasures in Christ, the journey itself is no small thing. Each day presents opportunities to glorify God in how you love and serve.

Life on earth may seem long, but in light of eternity, it is startlingly brief. Don’t waste your fleeting days here chasing pleasures that will fade away. Instead, live passionately for the kingdom that has no end.

The time is now to turn from sin and self-centeredness. Embrace Jesus Christ as your Savior and live the life of purpose God has for you.

Then you can rest assured that when your time on earth ends, you will dwell forever in the magnificent love of our Father in heaven.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do I need to fear death as a Christian?

A: No, because your salvation depends on Christ’s work, not your goodness. Those who trust in Jesus can joyfully anticipate life with him after death.

Q: How do I know for sure I’m going to heaven?

A: The Bible promises that all who repent of their sins and believe in Jesus Christ as Lord will be saved (Romans 10:9-10). Trust in Christ alone for your salvation.

Q: Why should I live differently if this life is so short?

A: You have a limited time on earth to serve God, pursue holiness, and store up eternal treasures in heaven. Keeping an eternal perspective will help you make the most of each day.

Q: Can I earn rewards in heaven by doing good works?

A: Your salvation cannot be earned; it is a free gift (Ephesians 2:8-9). But your eternal rewards in heaven will be based on how you lived on earth for God’s glory.

Q: Do our souls just cease to exist after we die?

A: No, the Bible teaches we will consciously exist eternally either in God’s presence or in separation from him after death (Hebrews 9:27).

Q. What happens after death?

A. After death, the body undergoes various changes. The heart stops beating, and the brain stops functioning. The organs gradually shut down, and the person takes their last breath.

Research suggests that this time can look peaceful and may even be likened to deep sleep.

Q. How do you know when death is close?

A. Certain signs indicate death is imminent. These signs include a significant decline in physical functioning, increased weakness, reduced appetite, and changes in breathing patterns.

It is important to consult with healthcare professionals for a more accurate assessment.

Q. Is restlessness a common symptom during the dying process?

A. Yes, restlessness is a common symptom that may occur during the dying process. It can be influenced by a variety of factors such as pain, discomfort, and anxiety.

Ensuring a calm and peaceful environment can help alleviate restlessness to some extent.

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