Dying with Christ, Living with Christ

David Bast

READ : Romans 6:1-5

If we have died with him, we will also live with him; if we endure, we will also reign with him . . . (2 Timothy 2:11-12)

I was watching an interview with a journalist who had terminal cancer. The interviewer asked the man about his future: “What do you think will happen to you after you die?” “Nothing,” the man replied. “The worms get you.”

Nothing more clearly separates Christian believers from the children of this world than our attitude toward death. This is a sure saying, Paul tells Timothy; here’s a truth you can trust to the uttermost: “If we have died with Christ, we will live with him; if we endure, we will reign with him.” You can be absolutely certain of this: death is not the end for Christians. Rather, it is our entrance into glory.

But there is this one thing. Though the saying Paul quotes is trustworthy, it is also conditional: If we have died with Christ we will live, and if we endure we will reign with him. To die with Christ means by faith to identify with him in his death and resurrection. To endure means to be faithful to him to the very end. The promise of life isn’t to those who start the Christian race, but to those who finish it.

PRAYER

Lord, may I run with perseverance the race of faith, and receive the victor’s crown.