TEEN TREE OF LIFE

The Doctrine of Death

Part 3

February 12, 2017

BEFORE we begin, if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, take a moment to name your sins to God the Father. This will allow you to be filled with the power of The Holy Spirit as you read this booklet (EPH 5:18 & 1JO 1:9). IF YOU HAVE never believed in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you have that opportunity right now. Simply tell God the Father that you are believing on His Son Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior. If you make that decision, you are now a believer and will always be a child of God! When you die, you will spend eternity with Him forever in heaven! (JOH 3:16 & ACT 16:31).

As we continue of study of The Doctrine of Death, we are at the next category which is called production mortality. This is known as dead works or operational death. Dead works is the function of human good apart from the filling of The Spirit. That is to say that it’s anything you do while you’re out of fellowship with God. A good example of this is you help your mother bring in and put away the groceries. If you cite your sins to God in His Son’s Name before you do it, you are helping her while being filled with The Spirit so you have produced Divine good. If you just do it, without being filled, it’s dead works. Good works are not a virtue when found in the devil’s world. Works in the cosmic system include legalism, self-righteousness and arrogance, which parlay into evil. Dead works is moral degeneracy and is burned up at the Judgment Seat of Christ.  1CO 3:12-15 teaches us about dead works: Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man’s work will become evident; for the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire, and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work. If any man’s work which he has built on it remains, he will receive a reward. If any man’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. So does 2CO 5:10: For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

The next category is Sexual Death. This category of death is mentioned only once in the bible, in reference to Abraham and Sarah: By faith even Sarah herself received ability to conceive, even beyond the proper time of life, since she considered Him faithful who had promised. Therefore there was born even of one man, and him as good as dead at that, as many descendants as the stars of heaven in number, and innumerable as the sand which is by the seashore. (HEB 11:11-12) The idea here is that Sarah was beyond the age of being able to conceive children, so she was sexually dead; however, God stepped in and allowed her to give birth!

Our next category of Biblical death is the Second Death. The Second Death is taught in several verses:  “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. He who overcomes will not be hurt by the second death.” (REV 2:11) Also look at REV 20:4-6: Then I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of their testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and those who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they came to life and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is the one who has a part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no power, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years. No verse defines The Second Death as well as REV 21:8: “But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” It is very important to not here that the only sin mentioned which puts you in the lake of fire is “unbelieving” – nothing else!

So, the Second Death is for unbelievers only and is the final judgment for those who have rejected The Lord Jesus Christ: And I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the book of life; and the dead were judged from the things which were written in the books, according to their deeds. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and Hades gave up the dead which were in them; and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds. Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (REV 20:12-15)

Then finally we have the category known as the Sin Unto Death. As we learned in last week’s Tree of Life, the Sin Unto Death is maximum punishment from God.  It is fair, painful and terminates in physical death. Believers can die the Sin Unto Death through prolonged negative volition and reversionism. Reversionism is the act of reverting to a former state, habit, belief, or practice of post-salvation sinning.  Reversionism is a reversal of your priorities, your attitudes, your affections, the object of your personal love accompanied by the destruction of your impersonal love, and the change of your manner of operation and personality.

The Sin Unto Death is actually a grace gift from God because God is saving the believer from the greater evil that is surely to come and He is  taking him/her home to heaven. REV 3:16 describes the Sin Unto Death: “So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will [a]spit you out of My mouth.” This is the manner of death for the believer who rejects the Plan of God. David notes for us his experience with the Sin Unto Death in Psalms chapters 32 and 38. It’s important to note that he eventually rebounds and is delivered from the Sin Unto Death: I will not die, but live, And tell of the works of the Lord. The Lord has disciplined me severely, But He has not given me over to death. (PSA 118:17-18)

Sadly enough, the Sin Unto Death will be the manner of death for the majority of believers in Christ. Most believers live their lives according to the ideas and goals projected by the cosmic system rather than according to what God’s Plan directs. In their rejection of God’s Plan in time, they become loser-believers and live and die in fear and disgrace. Quite unlike that which Paul states in PHI 1:21: For me living is Christ, likewise dying is gain [promotion].

In this study of The Doctrine Of Death, it must be clearly understood that death is a matter of the Sovereignty of God. Job makes this statement in JOB 1:21: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked I shall return there. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.” This verse teaches us that death is decided by God. So, we must trust in the Essence and Plan of God over that of our own personal opinions as to the timing of the death of anyone, including ourselves. Death is an appointment that everyone in the human race will keep. Whether a person is a believer or unbeliever, all will die. But it is the death of the believer which is precious in the sight of the Lord: Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His godly ones. (PSA 116:15) Look at ECC 7:1: A good name is better than a good ointment, And the day of one’s death is better than the day of one’s birth. This is a difficult doctrine to accept unless you truly believe that death equals being face to face with Our Lord and no pain or sorrow for eternity!

{to be continued}

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