Hank HanegraaffDear Partner,

You’d think it would end. But no such luck.

We could write it off to the dominance of scientific materialism today (matter is all there is).

Or we could attribute it to the noetic influence of sin (how the effects of sin tend to scramble our brains and distort our perceptions of reality).

But causal attributions aside, the tragedy continues regardless. And a true cynic might suggest that the likelihood of getting things wrong is directly proportional to their importance (the more important an issue is, the more likely we are to misread it entirely).

Take death, for example. A topic that most would prefer to avoid.

For millions of materialists, death is the absolute end of our conscious existence. Annihilation. Total oblivion. Nothingness. And it’s the prospect of that oblivion that drives many of us to engage in lifelong “mortality mitigation” projects to achieve symbolic immortality after we’ve returned to the dust.

The profound and utter folly is that millions of people will spend their lives

seeking to achieve an immortality they already have — but not remotely close to what they imagine.

That is, at death our bodies die, not our souls. Thus, contrary to our customary references to “mere mortals,” we are indeed immortal, but not in a way the materialist mind can comprehend.

That’s why Clay Jones’s new book, Immortal: How the Fear of Death Drives Us and What We Can Do About It is both timely and highly relevant. Especially for Christians.

Please click here for  excerpts from Immortal (in the description section), I’ll say just this much in passing. This book is important for all Christians everywhere because it speaks to the resplendent glory that awaits us. Not only in the intermediate state of life after death, but in our life after life after death, when our glorified resurrection bodies will last for eternity!

Second, as Christians seeking to be good stewards in a broken world desperately in need of healing, how we think about this world and the next matters deeply.  As C. S. Lewis put it in Mere Christianity,

If you read history, you will fi nd that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next.

Lewis continues,

The Apostles themselves, who set on foot the conversion of the Roman Empire, the great men who built up the Middle Ages, the English Evangelicals who abolished the Slave Trade, all left their mark on Earth, precisely because their minds were occupied with Heaven. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this.

Well, you’ve no doubt heard countless times that our mission at CRI is to equip Christians to ‘think and live Christianly.’ That fundamentally entails knowing that our lives don’t end at death, and that each day of our lives should be lived joyfully yet soberly in the clear light of eternity.

Let me encourage you to take a few moments to glance at the enclosed sheet of excerpts. Whether for yourself or for a friend or loved one, Immortal unpacks the insane lengths to which people will go to avoid death, while at the same time revealing the glorious riches of eternal life that await Christians in heaven!

For all that your faithful partnership means to the multitudes we serve each day at home and around the world, I’m more grateful than you may ever know.

…because Truth matters, and Life matters more,

President

P.S. Clay Jones quotes Irvin D. Yalom in Immortal about how making a difference can counter our anxiety about death:

“Of all the ideas that have emerged from my years of practice to counter a person’s anxiety and distress at the transience of life, I have found the idea of rippling singularly powerful. Rippling refers to the fact that each of us creates — often without our conscious intent or knowledge — concentric circles of influence that may affect others for years, even for generations.”

May God bless you for the ripples your partnership creates in and through CRI each and every day!