Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Today's Devotional from Pastor Clay: Isaiah 25 - The death of death.

Wednesday February 25, 2015
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Isaiah Chapter 25: The Death of Death

Isaiah chapter 25 contains a promise that God will one day do away with the bane of mankind: Death.

And He will destroy on this mountain the surface of the covering cast over all people, and the veil that is spread over all nations. He will swallow up death forever, and the Lord GOD will wipe away tears from all faces; the rebuke of His people He will take away from all the earth; for the LORD has spoken. And it will be said in that day: "Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us. This is the LORD; we have waited for Him; we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation." (Isaiah 25:7-9)

Death, the final frontier. The dirt nap. The trip we never return from. Death is the seemingly final stop for all life. And interestingly, death seems to be programed into our DNA.

Our body, by design, continuously replaces cells that die off. Every seven years or so we get a completely new body! Humans would live forever except for the fact that our DNA is programmed such that after 70+ years, cell replacement slows to a crawl, causing a slow degradation of the body, until finally it shuts down. (Psalm 90:10) Then, we die. Or do we?

The scientific community, no friend of the Christian world-view, has begun to question the reality of death. Granted it's not widely accepted, but many are starting to conclude that not only death, but our entire universe of matter is merely a type of conscious reality created by our brains. In other words, based on sensory input, our brains create our reality. Not only that, they've also proven that our presence alters reality. Advances in quantum physics research seem to validate that sub-atomic particles actually change their behavior based on whether they're being observed by humans or not.

Bizarre? Consider the famous two-slit experiment. When scientists watch a photon particle pass through two slits in a barrier, the particle behaves like a bullet and goes through one slit or the other. But if they don't observe the experiment, the particle acts like a wave and goes through both slits at the same time.

So how can a particle change its behavior depending on whether it's being observed or not? Apparently our awareness of the particle's activity has an affect on how it behaves. Experiments consistently confirm these observer-dependent effects on matter.

OK my brain hurts already - where are we going with this? The point I'm trying to make is that scientists are beginning to nibble at the edges of our existence, and its becoming clear that not only the material world, but our very existence in what we perceive as reality is infinitely more complex than we could ever imagine. To some it's science. To me it bears the stamp of an all-knowing, all-powerful, eternal creator - God!

It tells me that what God put into man, the breath of life (Genesis 2:7), is more than just a spark that makes our cells move around and reproduce.

It refutes the all-too-simple concept that once our physical body deteriorates, we go into nothing. There is more to us than living cells that will one day die. 

It tells me that if God is capable of creating this universe made up of subatomic particles of energy that interact with their environment, it is quite feasible, even practical, to accept that God is able to re-create reality, and design it according to His will. In other words, it removes the fairy-tale aspect of Heaven. Whether they realize it or not, scientists are proving the existence of God!

And finally, it adds a scientific confirmation to the belief that we as Christians hold, that there is life after death, and that God is fully capable of ushering us into a new reality called Heaven, where there will be no more death, no more sorrow, no more crying. He will truly make all things new. 

Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away."  Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." (Revelation 21:1-5)

Isaiah chapter 25 gives us a glimpse into this new reality that God has for us!

And when we are brought into that new reality, what will we say?

"Behold, this is our God; we have waited for Him, and He will save us. This is the LORD; we have waited for Him; we will be glad and rejoice in His salvation." (Isaiah 25:9)

Pastor Clay

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