“Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.”For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.”
Have you ever wondered what happens to us when we die?
The Bible teaches us in Ecclesiastes 12:7 that when we die, our body and soul will be separated. Our bodies will return to the dust from which it was taken. But our souls will not die with the body. Upon death, our souls will leave the body and appear before God. While the body disintegrates and disappears in the grave, the soul shall live before God to face His judgment (cf. Hebrews 9:27).
When the apostle Paul spoke of his impending death, he described it as him departing – “For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand… Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Timothy 4:6, 8).
As for the souls of all Christians, since their judgments have been borne away by Christ, there is a glorious hope. The souls of the dead believers will be with the Lord in heaven. Jesus’ words from the cross to the dying criminal, who repented and trusted Him, clearly affirm this truth – “Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43). As the criminal’s body lay dead, his soul went to be with Jesus in Paradise, for Jesus clearly meant that His human soul would be in Paradise when His human body died, hanging on the cross.
As Paul confidently declared, “to be absent from the body … (is) to be present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:8)! Amen.