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What happens to the body after death?

What happens to the body after death!

This cartoon illustrates the decay of the body after death.  We know about this, but it does not answer "What happens to ME when I die?" Nor does it answer "Will I need my body again, after my death?"

What happens at death?

Death is said to occur medically for many reasons: heart attacks, old age, motor accidents, diseases, etc, etc.  The Bible teaches that these are secondary causes.  The primary cause of all death is spiritual; it is SIN. Click this link for "What is sin?" - enjoy the illustration.

At death, the body processes of breathing, blood circulation, brain activity and cell metabolism all cease.  The body starts to decompose.  Yet our consciousness continues because as human beings, we not only have a body but also have a soul (or spirit) which is given to us by God.  Death can be defined spiritually as the separation of the soul from the body.  At death, the real part of us, the soul, leaves the body. The soul remains concious forever.

Questions arise and we all think about what happens after death?  Will I need my body again?  What if I can't get it back?  etc.  Let's begin to answer this mystery with things we already know deep inside:-

We all know everyone dies.

Everyone alive, sooner or later dies.  And experience teaches us, when someone dies they remain dead.  It is extremely rare to find someone who has been dead for a few days and is currently alive.

We know dead bodies must be disposed of.

wh_psDon't worry about your old body being cremated, you won't be there to feel anything. NO, you need to worry about being burned eternally in the flames of hell.

Experience teaches us that when a person dies, the body must be disposed of quickly to avoid the stench of decomposition and health issues.  Ordinarily the body is buried or cremated and the decomposition continues.  Cremation returns the body's component atoms and molecules to the environment more quickly than burial.  God's Word, the Bible tells us that the components of the flesh get re-cycled.... you will return to the ground from which you came. For you were made from dust, and to the dust you will return.  - Genesis 3:19

We know there is existence after death.

Everyone knows deep inside that death is not the end, there must be some continuance of my existence.  If you think this statement is incorrect, try resting from your busy life in a quiet place and listen carefully to your heart's deepest thoughts.  God has placed eternity in everyone's heart.... He has planted eternity in the human heart,...  - Ecclesiastes 3:11

Everyone knows God exists.

Psalm 19:1-4
The heavens tell of the glory of God.
The skies display his marvelous craftsmanship. 
Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known. 
They speak without a sound or a word;
their voice is silent in the skies;   
yet their message has gone out to all the earth,
and their words to all the world.

Everyone knows there is a God.  Again you do not need any Bible knowledge to know this fact.  God has placed evidence of Himself all around you.For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts.  From the time the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky and all that God made. They can clearly see his invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse whatsoever for not knowing God.   - Romans 1:19,20

What about ATHEISTS?

Atheists claim "There is no God" and consequently "Nothing happens after death".  God says that He is angry with these sinful people as they DO KNOW OF HIM but deliberately suppress this truth... God shows his anger from heaven against all sinful, wicked people who push the truth away from themselves.   For the truth about God is known to them instinctively. God has put this knowledge in their hearts.
Romans 1:18-19
... Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. The result was that their minds became dark and confused.  Claiming to be wise, they became utter fools instead.
Romans 1:21-22
They are fully aware of God's death penalty ...
Romans 1:32
Only fools say in their hearts, "There is no God."
Psalm 14:1   &   Psalm 53:1
.  They are also thankful and deceive themselves.

Everyone senses a judgement after death.

Everyone knows there will be a Judgement by God.  This also does not require any Bible knowledge, for God has placed this knowledge in our heartsThey (the Gentiles who do not know the Bible) demonstrate that God's law is written within them, for their own consciences either accuse them or tell them they are doing what is right.  - Romans 2:15, it's in our consciences.

Resuscitation, reincarnation and resurrection?

The options we have for living again in a body after death are resuscitation, reincarnation and resurrection.  The Bible says:- is destined that each person dies only once and after that comes judgment, Hebrews 9:27

Resuscitation is a good medical procedure to extend and value life, but it's limited.  It must be performed immediately after death, before the soul has left the body.  If the person's soul is gone, well it's like "Elvis has left the building".  Life cannot be restored.

Reincarnation proposes the continuation of the soul after death by being re-born into a new body.  The above Bible verse (Hebrews 9:27) teaches us that reincarnation does not happen.  We each only get one go at life on earth!

This leaves us with the possibility of resurrection, restoring the body from component parts and bringing the spirit or soul back inside the body.  The Bible leaves us with no doubt that Jesus Christ lived on earth, died on a cross, then rose from the dead!  Death has been beaten.  The proof of life after death in a physical body exists.  We have the written testimony from many reliable witnesses... God raised Him (Jesus) to life three days later. Then God allowed Him to appear, not to the general public, but to us whom God had chosen beforehand to be his witnesses. We were those who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead.
Acts 10:40, 41
He was seen by Peter and then by the twelve apostles. After that, he was seen by more than five hundred of his followers at one time, ...  Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. Last of all, I (Paul) saw him, too, ...
1 Corinthians 15:5-8 
 that Jesus had a new body, one that will last for eternity.  It was also a physical body.  Jesus is alive today, just ask any real Christian.

Resurrection, the Christian hope after death

crossAT EASTER, Christians all over the world celebrate the fact that Jesus is risen.  His resurrection proves that DEATH has been beaten!

1 ... when we die and leave these bodies - we will have a home in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God himself and not by human hands. 2 ... we long for the day when we will put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing. 3 For we will not be spirits without bodies, but we will put on new heavenly bodies. 4 ... We want to slip into our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by everlasting life. 2 Corinthians 5:1-4

The thought of gaining new eternal perfect bodies is absolutely wonderful!  Who would want their old earthly body?  Maybe it had a wooden leg, maybe the eyesight and hearing were failing, along with one's mental capacity.  God has revealed a perfect solution to all these problems - completely new eternal bodies from Him that will never wear out or decay!  But note carefully, the above promises are for the followers of Jesus Christ, who has beaten death and already has His eternal body.

All people will be resurrected, but for what?

The Bible tells us that all people will be resurrected "or raised up". All will see Jesus when He returns.

... the time is coming when all the dead in their graves will hear the voice of God's Son,  and they will rise again. Those who have done good will rise to eternal life, and those who have continued in evil will rise to judgment. John 5:28-30

... everyone will see Him ... Revelation 1:7

When Jesus returns, people's lives on earth will be totally exposedThe day will surely come when God, by Jesus Christ, will judge everyone's secret life. ....
Romans 2:16
and they will be sentenced before allAll the nations will be gathered in His (Jesus') presence, and He (Jesus) will separate them as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. ...
Then the King (Jesus) will say to those on the right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.  ...
Then the King (Jesus) will turn to those on the left and say, 'Away with you, you cursed ones, into the eternal fire prepared for the Devil and his demons!
Matthew 25:32, 34, 41.
.  This will show God's holiness and justice to all.  The followers of Jesus will pass this judgement and go on to heaven with new bodies.

Gain new life now and a new body after death

  • After you die, you will not need your old body again.
  • Your spirit/soul continues to exist after death.
  • If you follow Jesus Christ, then you will be given a new resurrected body to enjoy forever.
  • Everyone's main priority in this life must be to gain peace with God who gives access to eternal life (with a new body) through Jesus Christ.  This must be done now, before the opportunity closes.

The Bible clearly tells us, "There is life after death!"
Click this link to for more about Life after Death.
Click this link for what happens when Jesus returns

We pray that you are helped by the information on this page.


Click here to find more about Life after Death.

home page ...
Life after Death in new bodysinloadSatisfaction and Expiation ...
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Produced by Monash Christian Fellowship, Melbourne, Australia.  Author Pastor Bill Wheaton 2010.  This document may be freely reproduced and used for non-profit evangelism provided that it is unchanged and carries this credit.  Scriptures are quoted from the New Living Translation of the Bible.