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Fear Not!: Death and the Afterlife from a Christian Perspective Paperback – March 20, 2010
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About the Author
Ligon Duncan is the Chancellor and CEO of the Reformed Theological Seminary System where he is also John E. Richards Professor of Systematic and Historical Theology. Prior to his appointment he was Senior Pastor of First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, Mississippi.
Top customer reviews
Fear Not! Death and Afterlife from a Christian Perspective
By Ligon Duncan with J. Nicholas Reid
This book tackles the sometimes-taboo subject of death and the afterlife. It is taboo for a lot of people because death is not something people like to think about, however as Duncan describes:
"every Christian should study death, and every
minister worth his salt wants not only to prepare
you for purpose in this life, but wants to prepare
you for death, as well. The moment of a
Christian's death is his passageway into glory
And so we must be prepared for that moment
Whenever it may come." Pg. 21
Death is the gateway into glory for the Christian, but sadly it is also the gateway to eternal judgment for the unbeliever. This book discusses what will happen at he final judgment. There, Jesus will separate those that have believed with those who have not. The sins of everyone will be laid open, which as Duncan says, "is the one thing that scares believers about the Last Day." (Pg. 70) It is necessary for the sins to be laid out for the unbeliever because there will not be any excuse left in them. Once their sin is laid bare they can only accept their eternal punishment. It is necessary for the sins of the believers to be opened so the full effect of Christ's atonement can be seen. Everyone will see the awesomeness of God's grace and everyone will understand that is was only through the sacrifice of Christ, and not by any work of man, that sinners can be redeemed.
Many have argued that it is unfair that a good God should send people to hell. Duncan rightly points out:
" If you want unfairness, if you want discrimination
I can give you that. That is called heaven by grace.
Heaven by grace is the unfair doctrine imaginable
Sinners deserving condemnation get heaven forever
Because the One who was without sin became sin for
Their reconciliation. That is unfair, but hell is the
Fairest doctrine in the world. In hell, you not only
Get what you want, you get what you deserve." Pg. 39
While the first four chapters of this book deal with the sobering realities of death, Christ return, and the final judgment; it ends with the glorious thought of heaven. Every believer ought to long for heaven. Not just because of the streets of gold or the River of Life, but because; "Heaven is where my Savior is. Heaven is where the One who has saved me and the One in whom I delight dwells." Pg. 88
This book should be bought in bulk by pastors so that they can always have a copy handy to give to parishioners who are facing illness, or have family facing illness. We need to be confronted with a biblical theology of death and this does it. Highly Recommended.
I recommend this book to anyone who wants know what the Lord says to him in his darkest hours, and to anyone who desires too be encouraged by what the word of God says to us regarding the gain of death.