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What Happens Right After We Die?

There isn’t a lot of info about Heaven, but the Bible gives us some great insight about what happens after we die!

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The question has probably crossed your mind before: what happens when we die? Where do we go? What happens to us?  

Perhaps these questions come while sitting at a funeral or lying awake in the middle of the night. But where do you turn for answers? Instead of searching YouTube or TikTok, let's look at what the Bible says about what comes next.   

What happens when we die? 

When you die, your body decays and returns to the ground. That part is obvious. In fact, Ecclesiastes 12:7 says we “return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.” There is an essential part of us - you can call it a soul or a spirit – that continues on and joins up with God.  

The night before he died on the cross, Jesus talked about his own death. He said he was going to prepare a place for us (John 14:1-6). When we die, we are brought to that place – God’s presence, or heaven. Like going to sleep and waking up the next morning, your next conscious thought is heaven.  

What is heaven like? 

The book of Revelation describes heaven as built on a foundation of jewels (Revelation 21:19), with streets of gold and gates made of pearls (Revelation 21:21). Ultimately, these are symbolic descriptions, not literal accounts. We can’t comprehend what heaven will look like. We’ll see wonders beyond even the most beautiful sights here on earth. 

What we do know is that, in heaven, God will bring an end to all our suffering. Revelation 21:4 says, “he will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” 

Essentially, our existence in heaven will be the way God always intended it! Us, his creations, living in his presence. 

How do I get there?  

The truth is, not everyone will experience heaven after they die – but the path to get there is simple! If you trust Jesus as your savior and decide to follow him, you will go to heaven (John 3:16).  

You might be wondering, though, why God doesn’t just let everyone into heaven? Why is it that only people who believe can go? After all, there are plenty of people who have heard of Jesus but decided not to follow him. 

This is actually a great example of God’s character. He doesn’t force his will on anyone. God didn’t create robots that do everything he says. Instead, he gave us free will so we could respond to the love he offers us. Love isn’t really love unless we have the ability to walk away...and that’s what some will do. 

What happens if I don’t want to follow Jesus? 

Some people who will decide in this life that they want nothing to do with God. That’s a choice we have the freedom to make, and God will honor it.  

Those who refuse God’s grace will walk away from what God has offered and spend their existence outside the presence of God in a place the Bible refers to as hell. Despite what we’ve seen in pop culture, hell isn’t full of horned devils and pitchforks. Hell is the absence of God’s presence. 

God doesn’t want anyone to be sent to hell. In fact, Jesus went so far as to even suffer the wrath of God so we wouldn’t have to. God went to the furthest extent to rescue us – even while we were still sinners Christ died on the cross for us (Romans 5:8). 

If you are uncertain about where your eternal home will be, maybe now is a good time to make sure you put your trust in Jesus and His work on the cross. If you’re thinking about trusting Jesus, let us know – we'd love to answer your questions and walk alongside you in this decision! 

The bigger picture 

The big story about heaven is that humanity started out there, and we are headed back there. In the garden of Eden, God’s presence was among his people. As a result of sin, we ran away from God’s presence. The history of humanity we see in the Bible tells the story of how God chased us and sought to redeem us. 

One day, God will bring heaven back to earth and return us to the purpose he originally created us for: to enjoy our relationship with him face-to-face and begin the adventure for which we have been created. 

And what does that look like? 

“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him. (1 Corinthians 2:9

There is a lot to look forward to if you decide to put your trust in Jesus


LCBC stands for Lives Changed By Christ. We are one church in multiple locations across Pennsylvania. Find the location closest to you or join us for Church Online. We can’t wait to connect with you! 

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