Describe the perception of death according to Christian faith
Explain the Christian perspective on death.
Death is inevitable, and daily deaths will continue. But where do individuals go when they die? Since the beginning of time, death has been a controversial topic. Distinct factors, such as cultural backgrounds, educational accomplishments, and religious connections, influence the attitudes and perspectives of various individuals regarding death. However, the majority of individuals look to religion to explain the concept of death. Regarding death and the hereafter, several religions, including Islam, Christianity, and Judaism, hold divergent beliefs. Reincarnation, enlightenment, paradise, and hell are central to the ideas surrounding the afterlife. Some religions are rigid and constant in their doctrines, whilst others are more open and give more space for interpretation, resulting in a diversity of beliefs among its adherents.
How then do Christians see death?
Survival after death
Christians have an uncommon perspective on death. According to the universal consensus, death is the conclusion of life. The common notion is that when a person dies, their existence vanishes. Christians, however, do not support this viewpoint. According to the Bible, there is life after death, and death is merely the beginning or departure for another existence, either in heaven or in hell.
Death resembles sleep
Christians view death as a “kind of slumber” in which the “sleeper” continues to exist while his body sleeps. The deceased will therefore continue to live despite their inability to connect with others. Similarly to how sleep is temporary, so too is death. The New Testament (4:14) refers to people who have died as “those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.” The state of the body at death is referred to as slumber in the Bible.
Return to Dust
The Bible also discusses the return of the body to dust through decomposition. As a result of Adam and Eve’s sin, they were deprived of access to the “tree of life,” and hence lacked bodily immortality. The book of Genesis declares unequivocally that man will return to the earth’s dust.
Judgment, Heaven, and Hell
According to Christians, not all deceased individuals go to the same destination. After death, we shall be evaluated based on how we lived. Those who live a godly life will die in Christ and get eternal life. In the heavenly kingdom, they will be united with other virtuous people and dine with patriarchs such as Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For sinners and the wicked, death also signifies the beginning of an eternity of misery in hell. (Psa. 116:3) “Those who have lived in disobedience to God will enter a spiritual condition marked by extreme pain, trouble, and suffering,” the Bible says.
Cavadini, J. C. (2018). Two Early Christian Perspectives on Suffering and Death Christian Dying: Tradition’s Witnesses, page 94.
Chukwuedo, M. U. (2019). The conundrum of life and death from a Christian standpoint. Mgbakoigba: Journal of African Studies, volume 8, number 1, pages 42-49.
Hastings, Timothy J. (2020). God’s Mission, Modern Science, and the Christian Faith
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