What Happens After Death Part 4
'Arise, shine for your light has come and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. See darkness is on the land and deep darkness on the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you.' We live in days when this scripture is beginning to be fulfilled. But the time of darkness and light together, will bring about a greater time of 'spiritual warfare' and will necessitate a deeper call to prayer. To help us get a sense of the power of prayer and the revealing of God during warfare we need look no further than WWI and WWII. These were extraordinary days in our nation to live through. Dr Victor Pearce (now 94) lived in both wars and chronicled the amazing stories of the revealing of the power of prayer and the intervention of the Lord during warfare. This is the fifth in a series of articles revealing these stories. I think you will be moved and inspired, and I pray the Spirit of God will speak into your spirit through what you read - Jonathan Bellamy, Cross Rhythms CEO.
Life After Death: The Cruelty of Reincarnation Belief
Do we live more than one life? Have we been in this world earlier as some other person? This sounds an innocent enough question until we realise the consequences of such an idea. Glen Hoddle the English football manager caused an outcry against remarks he was said to have made saying that invalids suffered for sins done in their former life. This added to the sufferings which invalids already had to bear. I am sure Glen Hoddle never meant it that way because he is known to be very generous to the invalid cause.
Yet in some philosophies the theory of reincarnation has actually excused some from helping the downtrodden and unfortunate. Their misfortunes are regarded as a punishment for sins in an earlier life even if they are unaware of them! They are experiencing only what they deserve! So why help them? Such an outlook has kept the low caste in their miserable state.
So what is this theory of reincarnation? It is that the spirit of a human existed in many lives before the present one, perhaps even as an animal.
Does the Bible have anything to say about this?
Yes it does. Look at Hebrews 9:27 in the New Testament. There we are told, 'It is appointed for a person to die only once and after this the judgement'. Other scriptures teach the same: 'We must all appear before the judgement seat of Christ so that everyone will receive the things done while we were in the body according to whether they were good or bad' (2 Corinthians 5:10).
Now this is really good news because it means that the tyrants won't get away without just retribution. Think of all those cruel despots who have tortured millions. Would you like them to escape?
God repeatedly tells you that he is a just and fair God who on the judgement day will give rewards to those who have done good and appropriate punishment for evil deeds. And as regards our attitude towards invalids, the homeless and starving, look at that story Jesus told about the rich man and the beggar.
There was a certain rich man who dressed in luxurious clothes of important purple and of the best material, and who feasted gluttonously every day, but there was a poor beggar named Lazarus who was dumped at his gate full of open sores, and he craved to be fed from the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table. What is more, the dogs came and licked his sores. Now it came to pass, continued Jesus that the beggar died, and his spirit was carried by the angels into paradise. The rich man also died and had a grand burial.
In the Place of the Departed he lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw paradise a long way off and there was the former beggar Lazarus in luxury. The former rich man cried out, Have mercy on me! Send Lazarus to me that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue because I'm tormented in this flame.
But the answer came: Remember! Remember! You in your lifetime (notice that there was only one lifetime) received all your luxuries, but in contrast Lazarus suffered all those evil things. But now, what a contrast! He is comforted and you are tormented.
But there is a reason why Lazarus cannot come to you. Between you and us there is a great impassable gulf fixed. This prevents anyone who wanted to pass from here to you from doing so. Neither can anyone pass from you to us.
Then the former rich man said, I plead with you! Send Lazarus to my brothers to warn them! Send him to my father's house where my five brothers live, so that he can give them his testimony to stop them from coming to this place of torment.
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