Death and Grief

Nothing impacts us like the death of a loved one. It is so final and strips our emotions raw. When our beloved is a Christian there are great consolations. To these we must cling and from them draw strength.

There is only one of three reasons Christians die.
1. They have finished the work on earth the Lord has for them and He welcomes them home to get their reward.
2. They die as Christian martyrs who by their death advance the cause of Christ.
3. They sin the sin unto death and their life is terminated by our standards prematurely. The sin unto death is noted in I John 5:16. It is any sin which destroys a person’s witness of which they adamantly refuse to repent. The death of such a person brings more glory to the Lord than for them to continue to live is an unrepentant state of disobedience. This person being a Christian, though disobedient, goes to heaven. Death is the discipline.

In the first two of these there is honor and dignity giving cause for celebration. The third is an object lesson for all.

When our loved ones die they go to be with the only one who loves them more than we. In that instant they are more alive than we. It is their induction to “The Society of the Just Perfected.”
The Lord gives
and the Lord takes away.
Blessed be
The Name of the Lord.

He gives far more than He will ever take away. He has given memory. As long as anyone who knew the beloved departed is alive, the gift remains.

Emerson wrote: “Let the measure of time be spiritual, not mechanical. Life is unnecessarily long. Moments of insight, of fine personal relation, a smile, a glance — what ample borrowers of eternity they are.”

The Lord takes away BUT it is not as though He is a ghoulish God greedily taking away from us. Rather, He is a generous God graciously taking to Himself.

God does not lose His beloved ones by giving them to us. We do not lose them by giving them to Him. We must reason out our brooding. Would we pluck the diadem of blessings from the brow of our beloved? Would we remove the palm of victory out of a hand that will never know pain?

Our loved ones go not to the grave but to glory. We can with confidence give them proudly to God. To resent their going is to resist the blessings they have coming. When our beloved are willingly given to God He heals the pain.

Job knew the extremity of loss, the extension of pain, and the exhaustion of grief. His classic conclusions give stability and strength. Make them yours.

First, he affirmed God knows me:
“He knows the way that I take: when He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).

Second, he asserted I know God:
“For I know that my redeemer lives. And He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth” (Job 1:25).

Third, he attested to their mutual commitment: “Though He slay me yet will I trust Him” (Job 13:15).

God knows you. He takes no pleasure in your grief but He will take a part.