For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. Phil. 1:21-22, NKJV
Alive, I’m Christ’s messenger; dead, I’m his bounty. Life versus even more life! I can’t lose. As long as I’m alive in this body, there is good work for me to do. If I had to choose right now, I hardly know which I’d choose. Phil. 1:21-22, The Message
To Live is Christ
“To live is Christ.” What does this mean? It means that we’re here to reflect Christ, every single day that we walk this earth. It’s why we’re here!
Being a Christian is not just telling people, “I’m a Christian.” Being a Christian is not just getting into our church clothes and going to church on Sunday. Being a Christian is not even going to church twice on Sunday and once on Wednesday! No. Faith in Jesus is not a religion. Faith in Jesus is a lifestyle.
Being a Christian is how we live. To live is Christ. That’s what it is. It’s a walk that we walk, and we walk it every single day. If you’re living now, you are being Christ. You will be Christ as long as you live.
Sometimes we fail at it. Sometimes we do really well! And sometimes we’re just okay. We’re going to have good and bad days just like everybody else. God knows that, which is why He gives us grace.
To Die is Gain
“To die is gain.” What does this mean? It means that as long as you live for Christ, then when you die, you will gain heaven. You will gain a life that will be so much better than the one you had here.
As long as you’re here, you’re representing Him. And once your life is over, you no longer have to represent Him, because you gain Him. Whether you die for Jesus, or whether you die of old age, you will gain Christ.
You’ll find yourself in the throne room with God! You’ll get to hang with Him. You’ll get to sit with Him, and walk with Him, and laugh with Him. You’ll hang with the angels and worship Him! In death, you will gain everything. There will be no more fear. There will be no more death and disease. There will be no more lying, betrayal, or mistrust.
You will gain so much when you die. Eternity is so much better than what’s here on earth.
Life Versus Even More Life!
You can see why Paul says that if the choice were his, he wouldn’t know what to do! Life is awesome, because we get to reflect Christ. Death will be awesome too, because we get to hang out with Him. We can’t lose!
So as long as we’re here, let’s live for Christ. We’ll gain a lot when we die, but let’s not waste our time here. Life is awesome because to live is Christ. There is so much good work for us to do. Let’s not sit around and do nothing. Let’s make an impact for the kingdom. Let’s do as much as we can while we’re here!
This is not a works-oriented mentality. Works will not gain the love of Jesus. Works will not gain heaven. Paul isn’t saying that. He’s saying that we get to make our time on earth worthwhile. We get to reflect Christ!
I know that when I die, I’ll gain the kingdom. I will gain my time with the King. I’m going to gain so much when my time here is up. But as long as I’m here, I want to make an impact for the kingdom. I want to make an impact like Christ made, in the hearts and lives of other people.
I’m going to live as Christ, because to live is Christ!
See you Friday.