By Eld. Prasad
This year we have had quite a number of deaths involving family members and loved ones. We often shy away from death and would not want to talk about it. But death is inevitable and there is no escape from it. Death is no respecter of persons, be it babies, children, youths, young adults or old adults. Death is a painful intruder and comes unannounced, anytime and anywhere. Death should be important to all of us because death is the gateway to heaven and hell.
Losing a loved one to death is a painful experience inflicting us with a grieving, shattering heart. Lord Jesus understood the pain of losing someone close to His heart. In John 11:1-44, we learn that Lord Jesus lost a loved one named Lazarus. Lord Jesus was deeply moved and wept at the loss of His friend. This story, however, doesn’t end in tears. Lord Jesus knew He possessed the power needed to raise Lazarus from the dead. Lord Jesus said in John 11:25-26: “I am the resurrection and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die”.
Lord Jesus conquered death through His resurrection. It is comforting to know that death is not the end for those of us who believe. Those who accept Lord Jesus as their Saviour will have eternal life (John 10:28). God has prepared a new home for us in heaven, where there will be no more tears, sickness, death, sorrow, crying, or pain (Revelation 21:1-4). John 11:26 ends with a question from Lord Jesus: “Believest thou this?” An answer from Acts 16:31: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.”
Every grieving heart has a living hope and reason to rejoice because our Lord Jesus is no longer entombed but He lives. There is comfort in knowing that if our loved one was a believer then they are not dead but only asleep, awaiting the trumpet and shout of the archangel to awake with us and live and reign with our King, Lord and Master.
To lose someone who was not a believer is the saddest and hardest thing to come to terms with. Therefore we should be determined to be a better example and witness to those around us, the unsaved. To love and encourage them to receive the Saviour while they are alive and not wait till it is just too late.
While we are hurting from the loss of a loved one, God will comfort us, 2 Corinthians 7:6, “Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down.” The Bible tells us that God is the father of mercies and that He will comfort us in all our tribulations, 2 Corinthians 1:3-4: “Blessed be God, even, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort: Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.
Be assured that God loves us and that He understands how much we are hurting. God promises us in Isaiah 43:3 that when we go through deep waters and great trouble, He will be with us. When we go through rivers of difficulty, we will not drown. When we walk through the fire of oppression we will not be burned up; the flames will not consume us.
As brothers and sisters in Christ we are bound by His sacrifice to share one another’s burdens, pain and joy. Mourn with those who mourn and weep with those who weep! We are not alone, though not members of the bereaving family, but children of one body and one God.
Let us make the best of the days we have left in this world through loving and lifting one another up continually to become Christ-like.
Let us run to the shelter of the Most High where we will find sweet rest for we are told in Psalm 91:1-2: “He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.”
May we experience the peace of God, which surpasses anything we can understand, will guard our hearts and minds as we live in our Lord Jesus Christ (Philippians 4:7).
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.