I was recently at a store where two kids in their 20s were talking about being managers in their company. I wondered if they were old enough to drive.
Our culture glorifies youth and ignores its elders.
It does so to its own demise.
Part of the glorification of youth involves denying death by either mocking it, pushing it out of sight and mind, or taking a devil-may-care attitude towards it.
Our culture ignores death. Our culture mostly assumes that death is annihilation; therefore, enjoy life, when you’re dead, you’re dead. Period. End of story.
But Jesus destroys death, not by magically introducing a fountain of perpetual youth, nor by evacuating the chosen to enjoy pie in the sky, but by robbing death of its power, declawing it, rendering it impotent to hurt us. Jesus’ death and resurrection strip death of its finality and transform it into nothing more than a transition, a portal into eternal life.
To be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.
That is an interim place of peace. At Jesus’ appearing, we will be physically resurrected. Our new bodies will be eternal bodies that will never become ill or weak. Those bodies will be adaptable to the entirety of creation, no longer limited by time or space.
But, they will be real bodies. We will enjoy food and drink, know one another, interact with one another, learn, grow, explore, and live in the fullest sense of the word.
“Yea, though I walk through the shadow of death…” says the shepherd. A shadow has no substance. It cannot hurt you. The presence of a shadow necessarily implies light beyond. Death cannot hurt you. God is light.