That’s an important question because the answer affects each one of us who believe on the Lord Jesus as our savior.  1 Corinthians 15:31 says, “I protest by your rejoicing which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.”  The KJV is not the best translation for this verse.  I hesitate to criticize the KJV, but looking at the Greek, it becomes apparent that the thrust of what is being said is not adequately captured in the KJV.  I want to quote from the J.B. Phillips translation; a little known but accurate translation.  That says, “I assure you, by the certainty of Jesus Christ that we possess, that I face death every day of my life!”  In this chapter, the Apostle Paul is defending the truth of the resurrection of the saints.  He pointed out in verses 29-30, “…if the dead rise not at allwhy stand we in jeopardy every hour?”  If there was no resurrection for us after death, why would the believers of that day (and our day) risk their lives to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ?  Considering the context of this chapter, we can see the accuracy of the Phillips translation in this portion.

Paul had said earlier in 1 Corinthians 15:16-19, “For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.”  This very clearly shows the importance of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus.  If Christ was not raised, we are not saved; we are still in our sins.  If that is true, then we believers are the most miserable people on earth.  We live our lives in jeopardy of being hated, being persecuted, and even being killed.

Because the Lord Jesus was raised again, and because all the saints who experience death will be raised again, Paul could then say, “I face death every day of my life.”  We can face persecution and death when we realize that death is only an instrument that will usher us into the presence of God.  We learn in 2 Corinthians 5:8, “We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”  When a believer passes from this scene, he immediately comes into the presence of the Lord, waiting with Him until the day that He comes for His church to rapture them out of this world.  We read of that day in 1 Thessalonians 4:15-17, “For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent (precede) them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”

The realization of these precious truths should take away all the fears we might have about being hated, being persecuted, or being killed.  We can say as the psalmist did in Psalm 118:6, “The LORD is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do unto me?”  Paul was confident of the resurrection.  He was not anxious about facing death each day.  The Lord wants us to be the same way.  In 1 Corinthians 15:58 we read, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.”  (185.7)