And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.
1 Thessalonians 4:17,18
In a popular comic, Hobbes the tiger and his boy Calvin are careening down a hill in a red wagon. As they unknowingly speed toward a cliff, Calvin yells out, “It’s true, Hobbes, ignorance is bliss!”
Ignorance can be bliss. Not knowing about a problem means you are not worried about that problem. Being ignorant about a problem means you aren’t trying to fix that problem. You are blissfully unaware.
But, as the Calvin and Hobbes cartoon illustrates, being ignorant about something does not make it go away. And, sometimes, being ignorant can have catastrophic consequences—like riding your red wagon off a cliff.
Death is one of those things about which people like to be blissfully ignorant. They do not know what will happen to them after they die and prefer not to think about it. They are blissfully ignorant. But, being blissfully ignorant does not make the reality of death go away. It is something we will all face.
Thankfully, the Bible has some comforting news about what happens when we die. It assures us that Jesus died for the sins of the world and rose again. And he promises he will raise all of these followers from the dead when he returns on judgment day. And just as sin and death can’t touch Jesus’ body anymore, so Jesus will change our bodies. We will be without sin, pain, or any disability. “And so,” Paul concludes, “we will be with the Lord forever.”
When it comes to death, ignorance is harmful, but the Spirit-imparted wisdom of Jesus’ resurrection gives us eternal encouragement and good hope.
Lord Jesus, because of you, I shall not die but live and proclaim what you have done. Amen.