Death, Dying and Life
This past two weeks I have gotten calls about four deaths. One was about a neighbor's dad who died of lung cancer, another about a young mother who died of breast cancer, another of an 18 year old whom we have known he and his family for a number of years who died in a car accident, and then of my mother-in-law who died after a 14 year battle with emphysema.
The Bible says that death is an enemy. I agree. Death stinks. It is reality, all of realize that. We know that none of us are immortal.
I have done a number of funerals over my 27 years of ministry. I have noticed over those years that I can usually pick out those who have hope and know of eternal life in heaven from those who don't. Its the eyes and face. The people who have hope and know of the promise of eternal life are those who believe that Jesus died on the cross for their sins AND that He rose from the dead and defeated death.
Just this past week I chatted with an elder from our church. He pointed out two verses that pretty much summarize the Gospel.
"Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints" Psalm 116.15
"I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked but rather that they turn from their ways and live Turn! Turn from your evil ways!" Ezekiel 33.11
Wow, what a concept. God delights when He sees a saint die. Not that He is happy about the grieving, mourning and takes a morbid joy in seeing people die. No, God delights knowing that that person is coming to Heaven and will be spending eternity with Him!
However, God takes no delight or pleasure in seeing a sinner die. He is sad because that person has rejected God and the Gospel and will spend an eternity totally separated from God and live in hell for eternity.
We don't like death, but know that God is pleased knowing when a believer dies, he/she will be with God forever!