Reincarnation: the idea or belief that people are born again with a different body after death.
I’ve been a Christian for a lot of years; almost 39. I’ve never believed in reincarnation once I became born again, and still don’t. But every lie, for it to sell real well, needs to have an element of truth in it. Maybe there’s something I’ve overlooked where reincarnation is concerned. Well?
My understanding of the subject is limited, I must confess. Here’s the extent of my knowledge.
Let’s say, for instance, I am a vacuum cleaner salesman. The job sucks, but that’s what I am. However, in my previous life (my most recent life) I was a homeless person. I made my living standing on a busy street corner with a “Need help. God Bless” sign, and my three-legged dog.
Before that, I was a ballet dancer in Vienna.
As the belief goes, my “karma” determines what I’ll be in my next life, and how well I’ll be treated. And I guess, according to the belief system, I keep getting reincarnated until I reach a level of perfection, at one with the Brahman (supreme being); Nirvana.
One thing I don’t understand: nirvana means different things to different religions. To some, it means to be blown away, or blown out; like a candle. The end of all suffering, is what others believe it to mean. Other interpretations, from what I can gather, seem to indicate nirvana means “at total peace” and “total calmness and liberation from cravings, lusts, and evil desires”.
I haven’t a clue how many lifetimes it may take to reach Nirvana. Part of me even wonders if it’s worth the effort!
Like I said before, I don’t believe in reincarnation. I have never been someone else. I have never had a past life. Not in a “reincarnation” definition of past life. Not going to be anyone other than who I am. In this body or out of it, I am me, only and forever.
But here’s the “element of truth” I referred to earlier. I am born again. I will have a new, different body after death. I won’t “come back” as a dog, or butterfly, architect, or even a televangelist! In fact, I won’t come back as a community organizer, a lawyer, or a politician; even if I’ve been real bad.
I will be back, though. I’ll be back with Jesus’ heavenly host as mentioned in the book of Revelation.
“They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.” (Revelation 17:14 ESV)
“Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.” (Revelation 19:11-16 ESV)
I am born again, and the life of God is in me.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” (2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV)
“Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’” (John 3:3-7 ESV)
“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.” (John 3:36 ESV)
“But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:12-13 ESV)
“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12 ESV)
I will have a new body when I die. But it will still be me, in my eternal body.
“For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened – not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.”
(2 Corinthians 5:1-5 ESV)
“I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better.” (Philippians 1:23 ESV)
I have only lived once. I never existed before I was conceived back in 1954. I never was once a fly, a fish, or a loon. I’ve been called a pack rat before, and also an ass; and even though I may have acted like one, it was still just good old me. No one or nothing else.
The same is true for you. You have never been a monkey, no matter how many times you’ve acted like an ape. You’ll never be a dragonfly, or a talking horse. You’ll always be you. One life. You begin with your physical body, and when that fizzles out, you have another one already prepared.
It DOES matter what you do in this life, but not because of “karma”.
Karma has nothing more to do with where you spend eternity than Caramel Corn has to do with how a movie will end.
Your eternity depends on who is the Lord of your PRESENT LIFE when it’s time for you to check out.
He who has the Son has life.
“…it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment.”
(Hebrews 9:27 ESV)