For my fellow atheists that are not familiar with the story of Exodus in the bible I will give you a quick and brief synopsis of the most ridiculous elements of this story. The first thing God wanted to do was to introduce himself to his people through Moses. Why he did not do this personally is beyond me, and only illustrates even further the mythological origin of this and similar stories.
The next thing he wanted to do was send Moses to Egypt on his behalf to demand that he free his "chosen people" from slavery. Of course Pharaoh did not have a snow balls chance in hell of doing this because according to Exodus 11:10
"And Moses and Aaron did all these wonders before Pharaoh: and the LORD hardened Pharaoh's heart, so that he would not let the children of Israel go out of his land." Because God had the need to show off as usual he did so at the expense of Pharaoh and the Egyptians.
After God finally obliterates most of Egypt with various plagues and even the murder of every first born son in Egypt and the firstborn livestock and cattle in the land Pharaoh decided to let the Hebrews go. What most people don't know is that God had them roaming the desert for 40 years and that most of the original followers died in the desert. And the reason the bible gives for this is that God was tired with their constant complaining and lack of faith.
So according to the biblical narrative he killed over a million of his followers for complaints and disobedience. What a great father we have in heaven!! When the Hebrews finally reached the so called promised land on the other side of the Red Sea they were not told till then that they had to slaughter and dispossess all of the current inhabitants of the land. It's funny how the bible teaches that we were made in God's image, but when we act like him we were punished or murdered by the good Lord himself in the O. T.
Along the way every little offense was punishable by death, courtesy of God himself. He killed his so called chosen people by the thousands, and they followed him because they feared him. Fear is an important component of religious beliefs today, without it and its consequences (hell) no one would have a reason to accept these ridiculous beliefs in the first place. The people of the O.T. were terrified of being smitten with death all the time.
Torment in the afterlife is in and of itself more fearful than physical death itself, and the bible makes sure that you know this. The theme of fearing the Lord is carried out throughout the N.T. as well, just read Matthew 10:28 "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell."
Without fear or the promise of eternal joy and happiness to those that are faithful and obedient to the word of the Lord Christianity as a whole loses its bite. The thing that religious folks don't seem to see is how irrational and unhealthy this fear is. Death is a very natural and imminent event that no living organism on this planet can escape. So, my view regarding death is that you should not fear the inevitable.