#blacklivesmatter; that's right...................
#whitelivesmatter; that's true too.................
#alllivesmatter; that's better!
No matter the reasoning behind any of these notions, one must agree wholeheartedly with the last one, most of all! Yes, the lives of black people DO matter, the same as those of white people, yellow people, brown people & red people ( in no particular order ). The lives that anyone lives in this biology, no matter their race ( aren't we ALL members of ONE race, the HUMAN race? ), color, sex or religion, is a Gift from the Creator, not something to be taken lightly; no matter how one looks at it, we are ALL children/creations of our Heavenly Father & He doesn't do things 'willy-nilly', there is Purpose in everything He creates ( even the lowly mosquito )!
The subject of the 'after-life' is one that cannot be ignored: in this biology, death, or the cessation of life, touches us all! Do what we may, we cannot escape its clutches; it overtakes every aspect of biology at some point. This is how the human race was made: it was never made to endure forever. Some may argue this point, however, insisting that it was the disobedience of Adam & Eve that brought biological death into this world. One has to ignore Science, however, even Biology itself to faithfully assert this. You may have heard the term 'biological clock'; this is a metaphor, of course, for the fact that this biology, our individual body in particular, was not made to last more than a generation or so. Depending on the care one takes of his or her body, or as most Christians would say, 'the time allotted to us', we are granted a certain length of time, or existence, in this biology.
The 'Eternal Life' of which Scripture speaks, that which was Promised from the Beginning, was not, contrary to popular opinion, biological life! Although in a sense, one might say that, through what is called the Circle of Life, this biology will persist, this is not what Jesus meant when He told the sister of Lazarus, 'whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die' ( John 11:26 ). The long life-spans recorded in Scripture are taken at face value by most Christians, but it can be fairly easily proven that the writers of Scripture used a much different literary style than we are used to in the West. For a man to live for nearly one thousand years, as our western mindset tends to read Scripture, is so ridiculous as to be almost absurd, unbelievable at best. It is interesting & another indication of the ANE ( Ancient Near East ) literary style, that no women are mentioned as having lived this long!
A man or women is known by his or her spirit: the manner in which he or she lives out their existence in this biology is a product of the life-force that empowers them! According to Scripture, those with the Holy Spirit within do good deeds & those with an unholy, or evil spirit, do wickedly. There is much evidence, among certain people especially, that these different spirits can be 'felt', in other words, that one can tell what sort of spirit empowers one, even before they do anything, good or bad. Whether one chooses to recognize what is called 'paranormal activity' or not, as 'they' say, 'the truth is out there'; ample evidence exists that certain things occur apart from a biological explanation. One can even find 'evidence' of this in the pages of Scripture; the resurrection of Jesus, for instance!
Scripturally speaking, the biological resurrection, both of Jesus & others before Him, is undeniable; that Jesus returned to this biological existence in the self-same body which had ceased to function biologically is without question: the question is whether this was simply a sign of the times, or whether this signified a universal truth for all generations! Spiritually speaking, Jesus never died. As the Creator of Heaven & Earth, come in the flesh, or incarnate, the body that He inhabited while He walked this earth died, but His Spirit never did. This is not to say that the expiration of His biology had no effect, for it served the Purpose for which it was sent; the point is that, although Jesus was known by the deeds which He accomplished while in this biology, His identity was the Holy Spirit within Him!
Like Jesus, as stated earlier, human beings are known by the spirit they possess! We are most usually known by the deeds we do, the way we live out our biological existence, but our identity is not wrapped up in biology, rather, it is the Spirit Within which proves our existence. When individual, biological bodies cease to function, in essence, die, then the spirit, according to Scripture, returns to the One who gave it ( Ecclesiastes 12:7 ). What happens to that spirit beyond that is pretty much a matter for conjecture, although there are several theories out there, some more or less tenable than others. Whether or not the spirit endures after this biology ceases to function, one thing is fairly clear, there is much evidence out there that seems to point to the 'paranormal!
'Eternal Life', then, the 'everlasting life' ( John 3:16 ) that Jesus promised is not a reference to this biology, it refers to the Life of the Spirit, to 'the spirits of just men made perfect' ( Hebrews 12:23 )! An argument could be made, corporately speaking, that, in the Great Circle of Life, this biology will persist, but it is abundantly clear that the Life of the Spirit is wrapped up in the Creator. Individually speaking, though, in this biological body, we are given but one life to live & according to how we live that life, we will have either a blessed or cursed existence!
Depending, again, on how we take care of this 'shell' we are blessed with & barring any 'accident', our individual biological bodies are built to last for a relatively short period. We may do certain things to insure that we live out our years in more comfort, or live in such a way that we enjoy this existence more than some, but it is sure & certain; no matter what we do, this body will perish! Scripture asks this question ( I Corinthians 2:11 ), 'what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him?' For a man or woman to truly know themselves, they must search their spirit to understand why they do or don't do certain things. When their spirit is bent on evil, they will do evil, but if their spirit is good, good will come of it!
Life Matters! The Creator has blessed us with this biology & He doesn't make mistakes; every human being on the face of the earth was put here for a purpose. That purpose may simply be to smooth off the rough edges of a diamond, or it may be to shine like the stars of heaven, but ALL lives matter! In this life, some people become so attached to this biology that they become almost inconsolable when it passes away: this is not to say that we should ignore our feelings when we or a loved one arrives at the end of our biological existence, but, especially as Christians, we should remember that this biology does not define our life; our Life is in the Spirit & that Life never ends!
Charles Haddon Shank