What Happens When I Die?

It is usually stated at a funeral that, “They have gone to a better place.” That raises a question. Why do people even think that there is a better place? Where did that thought come from? In addition, why do we assume they went to Heaven? Could it be because we think all good people automatically go to Heaven?

A CBS News Poll dated April 27, 2014 showed that 82% of people expect to end up in Heaven, and a 2011 Barna Poll showed that less than one half of 1% believe they will end up in Hell.

If we go to another country, do we expect the border patrol to let us in because we are “good people?” No, of course not! We need the proper credentials. So why do we expect to show up at Heaven’s gates and just stroll in no matter what we believe or what we have done? We all can imagine that Heaven is a perfect place. Why should we, who are not perfect, be allowed in? Most of us have a conviction that we need to be “good” to enter Heaven. From where did we acquire it? We must understand that being “good” is not the criteria for entering Heaven. Please read these passages to learn about God’s criteria for entering Heaven: Eph 2:8-9; Titus 3:5; John 14:6; Luke 13:3; Rom. 5:8; Rom. 3:23; 1 Tim. 2:5.

My book, “What Happens When I Die?” answers many of these questions. It cites what some of the world religions believe, and includes 34 true stories of people who have had near death or clinical death experiences and what they saw in Heaven or Hell. It is interesting that most believe in some kind of afterlife. An October 2013 Barna Poll showed that 81% of Americans believe in an afterlife. There is a hope in man that there is an eternal existence in a better place.

Some people do not believe Hell is a place of torment. Of those who do believe in Hell, many believe it is only temporary. There are even some Christians who believe hell is temporary, or that a person is annihilated if they deny Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior. Jesus said in Matthew 25:46, “These shall go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” When He spoke of eternal punishment and eternal life, He used the same word for “eternal.” Just as Heaven is eternal, so is Hell.

Let’s go to the source and see what the God of the Bible has to say about our entrance into Heaven. Who are those who enter Hell? Since He created all things, it would be prudent to consult the only true authority God’s Word.(John 3:36, 6:40; Rev 20:12-15; Rom 6:23; Luke 13:3; Mark 11:26; Matt 10:32-33.)

You might say, “Why should I believe the Bible over all the other religious books?” One reason is that no other religion claims someone died in our place for our sins and rose from the dead. Only Jesus Christ has done that; there is undeniable historical evidence of the empty tomb and over 500 eye witnesses who saw Him after His resurrection.

Dr. Simon Greenleaf, one of the greatest legal minds in America, concluded that “the resurrection of Christ is one of the best supported events in history according to the laws of legal evidence administered in the courts of justice.” {More Than a Carpenter, Josh McDowell, pg.94}

I would urge you to research this subject for yourself so that you can make an informed decision about the destination of your afterlife.