Fairview Baptist Tabernacle
Friday, September 22, 2017
Staying Connected
 Archived Pastor's Desk 2017.04.16

April 16 – April 22 


Scripture Passage:  “After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.”   I Corinthians 15:6        “To whom (His apostles) also he showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.”   Acts 1:3                                                                                                      And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; you are yet in your sins.”   I Corinthians 15:17


Dear Friends,


     How awesome is it that our Jesus is the first fruits of them that slept?  Did you ever wonder what happened to Tabitha, the widow of Nain’s son, and Lazarus after they were raised from the dead?  They died again.  Sometime, someplace, somewhere they ended up in the same old condition – DEAD.  Jesus rose from the dead never to die again.  The Creator of Life and Light of Life became the eternal Victor of Life when He arose victorious over death, hell, and the grave.  So why do people still die?  If Jesus conquered death, why do believers still go through the grieving process of death?  As long as mankind continues to live in a sinful world there will continue to be the curse of death promised to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.  There are some religious groups that say when a person comes to know Christ they no longer sin. (I John 3:9) If that be the case I am in BIG trouble.  Then I read I John 1:8 that says if I say I have no sin, I am just deceiving myself and the truth is not in me.  WHEW!  Found a loop-hole that allows for a saved individual who has not reached perfection yet.  Is it possible that the two are connected in some way?  Can I have a priceless, perfect treasure in an earthly vessel?  Paul says we not only can – we do.  II Corinthians 4:7   Then he gives an explanation for this phenomena.  “So that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.”  When something so beautiful and perfect is seen in a “clay pot” everyone knows The Potter had to put it there.  The focus is quickly transferred from the pot to the treasure and that is where the focus should be anyway.


Since Jesus rose from the dead is it possible that we one day shall also rise from the dead?  If this is true what happens to a person when they die?  Do we lie around in the grave waiting to be resurrected from the dead?  Let us hear from two experts on the subject.  King Solomon who is arguably the wisest man to ever live gave this synopsis on the subject.  “Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.”  Ecclesiastes 12:7   In Solomon’s opinion there were two parts to every person.  There was an earthly fleshly part and this part, because of sin, would have to die and go back to the dust from whence it came.  There was also a spiritual part.  Because this part was spiritual it would live forever.  The soul would go back to God because He was the Creator and designed this part of man after Himself.    The Apostle Paul also believed this and gave us this reassurance in II Corinthians 5:8.  “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”  Jesus himself told the thief dying on the cross, Verily I say unto you, Today shalt you be with me in paradise.”   Luke 23:43  In all of these accounts there was a physical body that was placed in a physical tomb, but there was a spiritual body that returned to God to be at rest in His presence.  That is the reason Paul compared the physical body to be like a tent which housed the permanent spirit which is the dwelling place of God. 


     Is there a Biblical account that puts the two back together again?  I am so glad you asked.  Let us go to Paul in I Thessalonians 4:13-18.  “I would not have you to be ignorant brethren, concerning them which are asleep, (dead) that you sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.  FOR IF WE BELIEVE THAT JESUS DIED AND ROSE AGAIN, EVEN SO THEM ALSO WHICH SLEEP (are dead) IN JESUS WILL GOD BRING WITH HIM.  For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: AND THE DEAD IN CHRIST SHALL RISE FIRST.  Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall be ever be with the Lord.  Wherefore comfort one another with these words.”  Let us also hear what he had to say to the church at Corinth in I Corinthians 15:51-52.   “Behold, I show you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, (die) but we shall all be changed.  In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised INCORRUPTIBLE, and we shall be changed.”  Philippians 3:21  “Who shall change our vile body, (sinful, earthly body) that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, (we will have a glorified body) according to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto himself.”  Finally let us go to the utmost authority on the subject – Jesus Christ. “I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believes in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:  And whosoever lives and believes in me SHALL NEVER DIE.  Do you believe this?”  Yes, I do and I hope and pray you do too.  Happy Resurrection Day.


In Christ,


Pastor Johnny





Pastor Johnny