We are in a pandemic situation. The World Health Organisation has declared a state of global health emergency over the COVID-19 and the world seems to be spinning out of control because of this. It is easy to be gripped by fear when we see chaos especially when it has direct implications on our lives. The instinct for survival is natural in all living beings and when alarmed, our self-preservation instincts kick in and we rush to protect ourselves from illness or lack. This can make us resort to selfish acts like hoarding supplies, even fighting to protect those supplies from being stolen. Deeper fears are also experienced in the plummeting economy due to isolation and lock downs; loss of jobs, housing, financial stability, to name a few. A fear of failure from loss of control and identity can also result. For some, the fear of catching the virus is distressing as poor healthcare systems, rising death rates or the fact that no vaccine is available yet makes it look grim. This gives rise to panic and blame. Sadly, we also see a fear of men, mistrust of neighbours and societies being divided by prejudice and hate.
So what is the root cause of all these fears in Man? It is ultimately, the fear of death. The fear of first the physical and then the spiritual death. The leaving behind of loved ones, the pain and suﬀering when sick and the uncertainty of what we will face in eternity when we die. If there is a heaven and a hell, where would we go? If heaven is a place where we are with God who is full of love, then hell would be a place separated from Him with much suﬀering and pain.
I Corinthians 15:51-57 NKJV “Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed— in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” “O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?” The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
As Christians, we cannot avoid the physical death. However, we are assured that our spirits will not suﬀer the second death and be tormented in a hell far from God because we know that Christ, who was incorruptible, conquered death both physically and spiritually. He suﬀered for our sins on the cross, was resurrected and now is with God in heaven. God’s wrath on Man’s sin has been satisfied. His victory over [death and separation from God] belongs to us through faith in Him by the grace and mercy of God. We, who believe in Him, are forgiven and made righteous by the shedding of His blood as payment for our sins and we can now stand before God without condemnation as co-heirs to His Kingdom with hope for a glorious Life in eternity with God. A victory that is cause for celebration indeed!
Sermon Series: Fear Does Not Belong to You
那么，人类所有这些恐惧的根源到底是什么呢? 归根结底，是那对死亡的恐惧。先是对肉体死亡的恐惧，然后是对灵里死亡的恐惧。与所爱之人的死别，生病时的痛苦和折磨，以及我们死后面对永恒的惶惑。如果有天堂和地狱，那么我们会去哪里? 如果天堂是一个我们与满有慈爱的上帝同在的地方，那么地狱就是一个与祂隔绝的地方，一个充满痛苦的地方。
哥林多前书 15:51-57 我如今把一件奥秘的事告诉你们：我们不是都要睡觉，乃是都要改变。就在一霎时，眨眼之间，号筒末次吹响的时候。因号筒要响，死人要复活成为不朽坏的，我们也要改变。这必朽坏的总要变成（变成：原文是穿；下同）不朽坏的，这必死的总要变成不死的。这必朽坏的既变成不朽坏的，这必死的既变成不死的，那时经上所记“死被得胜吞灭”的话就应验了。死啊！你得胜的权势在哪里？死啊！你的毒钩在哪里？死的毒钩就是罪，罪的权势就是律法。感谢 神，使我们藉着我们的主耶稣基督得胜。