Written by Jay Yeager
Monday, 18 November 2013 18:14




     There is some clarification needed that none would read the title and conclude that which is not intended.

      First, no one can escape physical death; from the very first breath we take we are traveling a road to the last. Ecclesiastes 3:2 is brief, pungent (sharp) and accurate. “A time to be born, and a time to die…” So I am not talking about exchanging death for more physical life, for each of us has an appointment with death (Hebrews 9:27).

      Second, exchanging death for life has a time limit involved. Every person is made in the image of God (Genesis 1:26), which means all of us have an eternal existence before us with two possible destinations, heaven or hell. If one is lost for all eternity they will most certainly exist, but the Bible never refers to that as life. Not at all, rather the terminology is bleak, hopeless and frightening.

  1. Everlasting shame and contempt (Daniel 12:2).
  2. The resurrection of damnation (John 5:29).
  3. Everlasting punishment (Matthew 25:46).
  4. Everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord (II Thessalonians 1:9).

     Once you leave this world there is no exchange possible. If Christ comes during your lifetime the time limit has expired. Now having said that, you can this day, at this moment in time, exchange death for life.

     The exchange begins with awareness; you cannot bring life where there is no recognition of death. Or if you please, you cannot save a person who does not realize they are lost. When God speaks of spiritual death there is no attempt to soften the language, to apologize for the consequences of our actions. God says your sins have separated between you and your God (Isaiah 59:1-2).

     It is not someone else’s fault. If it wasn’t for so and so… the devil made me do it… no sir, not at all. In a society where so few take responsibility for their actions, when it comes to sin there is no blame game!

     That does not mean you have to go and hide in a corner, afraid to show your face. For all are, or were where you are. “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23), “For there is not a just man upon the earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not” (Ecclesiastes 7:20). But you must open your eyes and see where you are and determine this is not where I want to be. I want to go from death to life, from lost to saved. When one reaches that point, and God wants each of us to reach that point, “Who would have all men to be saved, and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (I Timothy 2:4), “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (II Peter 3:9).

     God has an answer; his Son Jesus Christ is the only answer to sin (John 14:6; Acts 13:38-39). Jesus came to give us life (John 10:10). We can exchange death to life, but more than that, once we go from death to life, from lost to saved, we never have to die spiritually again (John 11:25-26). The life Jesus offers is eternal life (Titus 1:2)!

     Exchange death for life? Yes, you can! At what cost are we offered life? Only the most self -absorbed would not stop and ask “at what price?” Someone had to pay for you and me to exchange death for life, and you would be right.

     The price went beyond anything this world could offer. The Father sent his only-begotten Son (John 3:16) into the world that we might live through him (I John 4:9). The Bible tells us of the sacrifice, its scope, and cost that we might obtain life:

 “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:5-8).

 “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man” (Hebrews 2:9).

 “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from the vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as a lamb without blemish and without spot” (I Peter 1:18-19)

 The Psalmist cried out “What is man, that thou art mindful of him…” (Psalms 8:4). That’s general; we make it far more personal. “Who am I that God did that for me?” The answer is humbling; God did it because he loves us. “But God commended his love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

     The Bible speaks of those who are unthankful (II Timothy 3:2), those who have no desire to know God (Job 21:14-15). To such, this lesson would have little interest, the spiritual side of man, if not outright denied, is certainly not considered. But if you have come this far into the subject of “exchanging death for life”, you are not in that category.

     Maybe you have seen yourself dead in trespasses and sins, and know that is not where you want to be. Wanting and willing to exchange death for life, the only question left… is how?

     There is an obedience required, of course there is, no matter who says otherwise. Listen to the inspired Hebrews writer, “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; and being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” (Hebrews 5:8-9).

     There is a progression that leads to becoming a new creature in Christ (II Corinthians 5:17). It begins with faith. Everything springs from believing in God (Hebrews 11:6), Christ (John 20:30-31) and the Bible inspired of God (II Timothy 3:16-17).

     Faith has a single source, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17).

     You must believe that Jesus is the Son of God (John 8:24). God, knowing there would be no shortage of deniers offers no shortage of evidence:

  1. God verbally acknowledged from heaven that Jesus is his Son (Matthew 3:13-17; 17:1-5).
  2. The honest (John 9:35-38).
  3. His disciples (John 11:25-27; Matthew 16:16).
  4. The devils (Matthew 8:29).
  5. The indifferent (Matthew 27:54).
  6. Jesus himself (Mark 14:61-62; Matthew 27:43).
  7. John wrote a book to the end that we might know without a doubt. “And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name” (John 20:30-31).

     You must repent of your past sins. It should be obvious that you cannot remain in the very thing that brought about your spiritual death. You must repent (turn away from sin) and refuse to serve it ever again (Romans 6:16-18). The command, “I tell you, nay: but except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3). “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commands all men everywhere to repent” (Acts 17:30).

     You must confess Christ before men to be saved (Romans 10:10). The life that comes from being in Christ requires both conviction and courage. Paul spoke of living for him who died for you, “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

     There can be absolutely no shame in Christ or his teaching (Mark 8:38). You must confess him, to be confessed by him (Matthew 10:32-33).

     You must be baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins (Acts 2:38). It is nothing short of tragic that so many have been told it does not matter. Jesus knew that it did. Before departing Jesus said this to his apostles:

“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world” (Matthew 28:18-20).

 “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned” (Mark 16:15-16).

Now who said that? Jesus Christ did!!! Who is to say to the contrary? Who cares!

 Beloved, three quick reasons why baptism is absolutely necessary to salvation:

1.      Baptism is for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38; 22:16).

2.      Baptism puts one into Jesus Christ (Romans 6:3-5; Galatians 3:26-27).

3.      Baptism saves (I Peter 3:20-21).

 Are you in need of exchanging death for life??? There is a time limit, please do not miss it!