What is the Good News of Great Joy with respect to Death?

What is the good news of great joy with respect to death?

The Son of God brought with him good news of great joy with respect to our harsh passage through the valley of tears (love is the "grease" that mitigates its harshness) and with regard to sin (forgiveness follows repentance). Did he bring any good news of great joy for us with regard to death?

All mortals know that death has an entrance. But, does it have an exit? We can get in but, after we enter, can we get out? Is death a trap? Whether or not death is a trap was an open question that had confronted humanity since the age of Adam and Eve - until the Resurrection of Jesus. We see people go in; but, we do not see people come out . Nobody emerges from the dead. But, Jesus did. That he emerged from the dead still alive is the proof of the power of Jesus. By emerging from the dead, Jesus demonstrated for us that death has an exit as well as an entrance .

Jesus found the exit. Can you? Do you think you will be able to find the exit from death on your own without his help ? Prudence suggests that we make our reservation with him now so he can guide us during for our trip through death before it is too late and we get shut out .

The good news of great joy with regard to death is that death is not a trap. Death has an exit as well as an entrance. We can find the exit and pass through it with God's help .

The Black Hole of Death

The Good News of Great Joy with regard to Death

We tortured and killed him. He suffered and died. We ignominiously stuffed him into the black hole of death. Nobody who enters the blackhole of death exits it alive. He did. Does not his emergence alive from the dead tell us something significant about the power of Jesus? Does an ordinary, mortal man have the power to escape from the dead? No. Ergo, Jesus was not an ordinary, mortal man. He was something else - something more.

Furthermore, he did not exit the black hole of death empty-handed. He smuggled out a gift. It was a precious gift. We are the unworthy beneficiaries of his gift given the evil we did to him. What was the gift that emerged with him from the black hole of death? The gift was his love for us. He did not stop loving us even though we tortured and killed him. He continued to love us nonetheless. His love for us stopped him from tearing the love note to shreds and stopped him from taking the invitation to come back to our home with him and his holy family off of the table. Does this not tell us that our conception of divinity as power is incomplete. Divinity is more than power. Divinity is also love.

In fact, divinity is head over heals in love with us.

We get a sense of the magnitude of his love for us by the magnitude of the price he paid out of his own pocket to produce the Crucifixion. He paid the price not from his unlimited divine resources. He paid the price from his limited human resources. He paid them all for us. He kept not a penny for himself. He has never paid more for anything else!

We get a sense of the duration of his love for us from its indestructibility. His love for us ought to have faded as we tortured him and ought to have died when we killed him . But it did not. It survived. Its survival is the proof that the duration of his love for us is forever. His love for us, like marriage, is indissoluble.

A glorious burst of epiphany accompanied his emergence from the dead. His love for us emerged with him from the dead like the dawn of a new day . It illuminated the nature of God. Our God is still alive and still in love with us despite the evil we did to him. His love for us did not fade as we tortured him and did not die when we killed him. His love for us survived the evil baptism into which we immersed him. How is this possible ? We impaled him on a tree bloody and alive with the same insouciance as the fisherman who impales a worm on a hook yet his most sacred heart stayed filled to the brim with love for us. Buckets of blood spilled through the wounds we opened in his body but not a drop - not a drop - of his love for us. Who is this God who clings to his love for us, holds tight and refuses to let go ? We did everything in our power to extinguish his love for us that burns like a bonfire in his most sacred heart. We not only failed to extinguish it, we failed to reduce it by even the slightest degree. The dial that controls his love for us is in his hands not ours. Moreover, it is set to the highest degree and is locked in place.

Wow!

His power made paradise. However, his love for us makes paradise sweet. The sweetness of paradise is the honey that draws the bees back home to the hive. Rational creatures seek the sweetness of paradise and flee the surness of godlessness. It is contrary to their self-interest to do otherwise. It is crazy to do otherwise.

Imagine the parable of the good Samaritan differently. Imagine the half dead man, wounded and stripped of his raimant as he went down from Jerusalem offering the gift of his love to the thieves. Thus you will understand the audaciousness of what Jesus is doing with us.

Rocket Man

The Good News of Great Joy with regard to Death

Death is the launchpad from which we make the great leap from time into eternity . Jesus impaled bloody and alive like a worm on a hook was hung from the gantry of the launchpad. There he died. His death initiated the countdown . Liftoff followed ignition. From the launchpad, he ascended like a shooting star into the night sky. He streaked through the darkness to illuminate our understanding of God in a glorious burst of epiphany. At the point of emergence from the blackhole of death, truth started to radiate like the dawn of a new day . Jesus did not exit the blackhole of death empty-handed. Important truths exited with him. Our job is to read and study the glorius truths that emerged with Jesus from the blackhole of death. Christians are scientists whose mission is to discover the truth about life and about God. The holy places that define the escape route from godlessness to paradise are the laboratories at which our scientific investigation takes place. At the laboratories, we find both God and the Church. The Church is the usher who shows us to our seats so God can put on the show. God, not the Church, is the star of the show.

P.S. All mortals know that death has an entrance. But, does it have an exit? We can get in but, after we enter, can we get out? Is death a trap? By emerging from it, Jesus showed us that death has an exit as well as an entrance . Jesus found the exit. Can you? Do you think you will be able to find the exit from death on your own without his help ? Prudence suggests that we make our reservation with him now for our trip through death before it is too late and we get shut out . The good news of great joy with regard to death is that death is not a trap. Death has an exit as well as an entrance . We can find it and pass through it with God's help.

What is My Pension Worth?

The Good News of Great Joy with regard to Death

What is my pension worth? My pension is a friendship with God. You tell me what it is worth. Let me tell you this: the closer I get to the hour of death, the more valuable my pension is worth.