Basic Principles About Death From the Rich Man and Lazarus in Luke

A small cross on a grave with the sky visible in the background.

Over the past several months, many have dealt with friends and family becoming ill from COVID-19. While I expect a number of them have recovered, I'm sure that some died from it, or complications related to it. Even more have passed away from other health problems too. Of course, the eventuality of death is something that all of us have to face. It is the great equalizer.

Sheep and Goats, or the Two Ways of Matthew 25

A shepherd is with his sheep. He is standing in front of a fence with dozens of sheep behind him. A barn or farm house can be seen on the other side of the fence. Some trees are visible further down the fence line. At the left side of the image the sun is peeping over some mountains on the horizon.

What can we expect when Jesus comes in His glory and sits on the throne of His glory? Many things, but one of them is division! Matthew 25:31-46 provides an incredible and terrifying glimpse of the judgment to come. In the passage, Jesus separates people from all the nations as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. This will be great from some, and horrible for others.

The Two Gates and Ways of Matthew 7:13–14, and the One That Leads to Life

A path through a forest with trees on either side. The photo was taken in autumn, so there are no leaves on the trees.

Jesus begins this portion of His sermon by exhorting His hearers to enter through the narrow gate. For years, I felt like that was a surprising way to start the thought. Especially since He immediately changes His topic to the gate and way that we should not travel. As I reflect on it further, it actually does make sense. The reason is because the consequences of not entering by the narrow gate are horrible.

The Way of the Righteous and the Way of the Wicked in Psalm 1

A black and white photo of two paths in a park or forest. A lot of trees are visible throughout, and a park bench is on the side of the path to the right. It curves to the right, while another path at the left goes straight.

One common aspect of the Bible is its contrasts. Many passages speak of only two positions. A well-known text that presents such a division is the first Psalm. It describes the contrast between the righteous and the wicked. I think it will be beneficial for us to explore these two different types of people so we are encouraged to go in the way of righteousness.