Stella Rogers died at age 99…and…two-thirds. At 99, that “two-thirds” part is important, you know!
Physical death did not come easy for Stella. She often asked others why Jesus had not yet taken her home to heaven. The answer we are given in the Bible is that God has a purpose and a time for everything and each of us. His work in Stella and His work through her was not yet complete until June 12th. With Stella’s earthly life complete, eternal life with her Savior and Lord Jesus Christ began the same moment. Stella’s soul was set free from a physical body that began decaying 100 years ago. We don’t often think, or even like to think, of death beginning at our physical birth, but it does.
In the last weeks, Stella asked her granddaughter Sherry to bring her favorite Bible, which was an interesting request since Stella couldn’t see. Although, she could see enough to know that Sherry brought the wrong Bible. What was in that Book that was so important to Stella, that even though she couldn’t see the words to read it, she wanted it nearby?
That Book tells us about death—it is an ugly picture—repeated on nearly every page of the sacred text. The Bible also tells us about life which lasts forever beyond this earthly life. This eternal life is only available from Jesus Christ. What does this precious Book say that led Stella to hold these truths so dearly? Below is my growing collection of “end of earthly life truths necessary to believe before the end of life in order that eternal life with Jesus Christ begins.” I reviewed these truths at Stella’s memorial service for the encouragement of other believers and for examination by those who do not yet believe.
Stella believed, as the Bible teaches us, that at the moment of physical death her soul and spirit would immediately be welcomed into the presence of Jesus Christ.
Stella believed, as the Bible teaches us, she would not be in His presence because of luck or because of the kind of woman she was in this life but simply because she believed what Jesus said is true. Jesus said, “I am the Way, and the Truth, and Life, no one comes to the Father except by Me.”
Stella believed, as the Bible teaches us, that “Salvation is all of God.” Stella believed the only thing of her very own which she contributed to her redemption is the sin from which she needed to be redeemed.
Stella believed,as the Bible teaches us, that anyone who trusts Jesus Christ and nothing else, no one else, not even one’s self to save from our sin will also be forgiven and redeemed.
Stella believed, as the Bible teaches us, that anyone who has been forgiven and redeemed by Jesus Christ will at their earthly death immediately begin to enjoy the same eternal life she is now experiencing.
Stella believed, as the Bible teaches us, that anyone who has not been forgiven and redeemed by Jesus Christ will at their earthly death immediately begin to endure eternal life apart from the presence God.
Stella believed and continues to believe, as the Bible teaches us, that one day Jesus Christ will resurrect a perfect and sinless and eternal body to reunite with her soul and spirit.
Stella believed these truths taught in the Bible. Do you believe them, and subsequently, believe Jesus Christ? What additional truths would you include?