Many people today strongly believe death ends it all. Hence they don’t really care how they live. They have the mentality of, “Let’s eat and drink for tomorrow we die” (1 Corinthians 15:32 NIV). This mentality is not only wrong; it is far from the truth; it is a lie from the devil, the father of lies. He has an agenda. That agenda is to get as many people as possible to hell; after all why should he go there alone? He knows unbelievers are hell-bound. “Then he will say to those on His left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels’” (Matthew 25:41 NIV). So his goal is to deceive and draw many to hell with him. The truth about everything, including life after death is how it’s defined by the Bible. Until we discover God’s truth about issues we have no truth at all. So let’s see what the Bible says about the subject of life after death. The Bible says, “. . . man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment” (Hebrews 9:27 NIV). This is how it’s going to happen, “When the Son of Man (Jesus) comes in His glory, and all His angels with Him, He will sit on His throne in heavenly glory. All the nations will be gathered before Him, and He will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats” (Matthew 25:31-32 NIV). Right there, we see there will be only two groups; there will only be believers and unbelievers. There will not be an in-between group. So when this separation is made, where will you be? The believers get to inherit the kingdom of God and the unbelievers get to inherit hell (see Matthew 25:34, 41).
The book of Revelation talks about another kind of death. It is referred to as the second death (see Revelation 20:6). If there will be a second death, then natural death (1st death) does not end it all. There will be a second death which is referred to as the lake of fire. “Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death” (Revelation 20:14 NIV). The Lake of fire will be ongoing, it will never go out or go down in its intensity, and it will be forever. Each person needs to make plans for life after the natural death. Whether one believes there is life after death or not does not change what God says about it, and God will not change His word because somebody does or does not believe it. If there’s ever going to be a change of mind about any of God’s laws, it is definitely not going to be God’s. Each person can plan to go to heaven or face the second death. Each person has been given the right to make a choice. God will not be responsible for anyone going to hell, those who go will do so by choice. He said to the Israelites, “This day I call heaven and earth as witness against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live” (Deuteronomy 30:19 NIV). He also says, “For the wages (payment) of sin is death (the 2nd death), but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23 NIV). For God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16 NIV). The way God separates the sheep from the goats is to see whose name is or isn’t written in the book of life. “If anyone’s name is not written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire (2nd death)” (Revelation 20:15 NIV). Getting one’s name in the book of life is understanding and admitting that one is a sinner, and cannot save himself or herself. Believing in Jesus, asking Him for forgiveness, and surrendering to His Lordship ensures that one has passed from death to life. What are you going to choose?