Photo: Billy Graham preaches at his Queens, New York crusade in 2005.
By Will Graham
On the morning of February 21, 2018, my grandfather slipped silently and sweetly into the presence of Jesus. He was called home in a manner that was fitting for a servant of Christ who had uncompromisingly served his Lord for the better part of a century.
He closed his eyes in the earthly realm, only to open them once again in Heaven.
I believe it was something that my grandfather anticipated with great joy and peace. Why? Because he knew—with no doubt in his mind—that it wasn’t the end. Death for him was just a door that must be walked through in order to get to his real and true home.
On the other side of that door was his dearly beloved wife (my grandmother Ruth), his parents and two siblings, and many wonderful friends and partners in ministry who had gone on before him. Most importantly, the Savior was there with arms open wide to welcome His good and faithful servant.
Many people have a fear of dying because they don’t know what is in store for them. They want to get to Heaven but don’t know if they’ve done enough good things in life to warrant their place. They feel like there’s no way of knowing until they die and their tallies are counted.
Others openly admit that they don’t believe in a God or in Heaven and hell. In their view, there’s nothing on the other side of that final breath. You live and then you die. You cease to exist.
My friends, if you hold one of these two views, it makes complete sense that you are afraid of dying. If you can’t say with certainty that you know Heaven awaits you, it probably doesn’t.
If that describes you, please hear what I have to say next. Rather than fearing death, you can consider it your friend!
Since Christ has conquered death, it is now subservient to Him. Death has lost its sting (1 Corinthians 15:55). For those who call on the name of Jesus as Savior and Lord—like my grandfather—death is now the friend that opens the door and introduces us to eternity with Jesus in Heaven.
Therefore, the real question isn’t about life and death; it’s about Jesus and what you’re going to do with Him.
It’s not a matter of being good enough. The Bible says that we’ve all fallen short of God’s perfection (Romans 3:23). No amount of good works can change that.
Rather, it’s a matter of accepting Jesus’ free gift of salvation, paid for by His sacrificial death on the cross (taking your sins and mine) and then His victory over the grave. Ask Christ to forgive you of your sins and be the Master of your life.
Like my grandfather, you can have the peace of knowing that when your time on earth is done, you will be in Heaven and see Jesus face to face. Don’t wait another minute—surrender your life (and death) to Him today.
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Will Graham is the Vice President and Associate Evangelist at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. For more information on the BGEA, visit https://billygraham.org. This article was reprinted with permission.