The whole of Romans 6 is worth reading. Do not just stop at vv. 3,4,8 & 9! Here Paul speaks about the reality of Baptism and what it should mean to the Christian. Christians should only fear death if they have unrepented sin in their hearts and then they should be running to embrace the death of Jesus on the cross that is the forgiveness of our sins! The price of sin in the Old Testament was the life-blood of an animal. The larger the sin, the more costly the sacrifice that had to be offered at the altar in the Temple.

Jesus’ death on the cross atones for all of our sins in one act that is forever efficacious and sufficient. What a tremendous price, the life of the Son of God that was paid to reconcile us with the Father! We are no longer talking about mere animals from the fields, but God sending His own Son to redeem us in person! This is an utterly singular event in all of the human history of religion. I am aware of no other example of God sending His Son to redeem a created people who had gone astray. Our God is indeed like no other God, slow to anger and rich in mercy and love.

On the Feast of All Souls it is to this richness of love and mercy that we entrust our loved ones who have passed from this life unto eternal life. We cannot be absolutely certain about their fate, however, we have every reason to trust that the best has happened to them if they have lived a good life in obedience to God’s word. Yes, they may have been sinners, but this is what we all are and this is the reason God sent His Son to redeem us. When we sin we always have the opportunity before us to repent and turn back to God. If we deliberately fail to do this out of pride, self-sufficiency or arrogance, then we have a lot to worry about regarding our salvation! The meek and the humble, those willing to repent and desiring to live a good life should be able to firmly believe and trust in God’s mercy?

I do not mean to scare anyone. It is important that we are all aware of the truth. After that there is no excuse. As they say in the movies: “you make your own bed and you sleep in it.” Meaning, if that is what you choose to do, then you must be willing to live with the consequences. If not, then do not do it in the first place!

How seriously do I take the truth that all my actions have consequences for which I am responsible?

Jesus, help me to realise what the consequences of sin really are. Help me to have a healthy fear of the possibility of eternal life separated from you. Grant me the grace to deny the temptations that sin sends to me and to embrace your will more fully each day.