He who overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.”
The Crown of Life comes to those who lose their life daily in order to gain His Life daily. Overcomers cannot be hurt by death because they have already died – not once, but thousands of times: taking up the Cross daily, denying Self, and following the Lord. Thus, the highest call is not to lay down our physical life as a martyr, but to lay down our Self life as a disciple.
We can lay down our physical life in an instant, but to take up the Cross daily is the truest test, and much more difficult. It requires us to be “faithful unto death.” This is the secret of the Overcomers.