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It is pretty difficult to come to terms with much of reality, yet it is. Death is indeed the most threatening, most terrifying factual monster ever in the life of anything ever to live on earth. It goes on to terrify us when it happens to people we are related to, close friends, and those who may be distant. The death of even an enemy will instinctively ignite a sense of mercy upon the dead. Death is the only effective controlling factor of human beings ever to be. Now the question props up; how does one find comfort when an unsaved loved one dies? Scripture in Psalms 24:1 says the earth is the Lord’s and all that is there in it. When either a saved or a non-saved loved one dies, I have to first understand it as a command by God which is punishment for sin of Adam and Eve. For a saved one, he/she suffers the death of the flesh, for the unsaved, he/she suffers the death of both; flesh and spirit. Being our fore parents (Adam and Eve), sin carries on to us with its punishment (Genesis 6:3). We are only free of it when we accept and allow Jesus Christ into our lives as Lord and Savior. Based on the fact that the earth is the Lord’s and all that is there in, the Lord is the Land Lord, He chooses to do how He wishes with His property. I will therefore accept everything on that account; that the owner has chosen to do what He wishes with his property. The above taking therefore calls for continuous vigorous spread of the gospel of truth to whoever, which is the assured way to go. Death is a factual monster; we can only reduce the degree of fear of it by accepting and allowing Jesus (the only one to have overcome death) into our lives. We should stand to preach as much as we can to lead people to the correct path of salvation. This helps to comfort us when our loved ones have died, on account that much as we may grieve at their demise, we are pretty sure that the fact that they let in Jesus, they have a good ending. However though, to have them accept is of the Lord’s. I will grieve for a lost soul, but I will not condemn myself. One of the ways in which I will get comfort after the loss of a loved one is the fact that there is one far much more above me in whose hands is everything (God). He will surely take care, He knows why He does what He does and at whatever time He wishes to do it. Job could only say: 21 …., Naked came I out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return thither: the LORD gave, and the LORD hath taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly. Job 1:21-22 With Christ, there is lively hope of life after death. Jesus died and rose again. This gives us confidence in Him. He did not only promise, He made sure He assures us of the promise by being the first man to die and rise again. On that account, when He promises us life after death, we do have a lively example in Him. It is pretty painful when we lose loved ones, much more so when they aren’t saved. In human terms, it is indeed not easy to come to terms with it. I had done all I could to lead my mother to Christ before she died. She refused and died unsaved. It devastated me and I was even much weakened and compromised in my Christianity. Despite all this, I only got a dream and saw her seated on a large frying pan with flames of fire under it. I was pretty assured that she had indeed ended up in Hades. I only came to terms by realizing that the earth is the Lord’s and all that is there in. I can’t go on to question Him. Flesh gives birth to flesh. If one dies, the living should never have anything any more to do with the dead. The spirit belongs to the Lord. In conclusive terms, I have to reach out to them and present them the choice of salvation. What more can I do other than that. Jesus is our only hope (John 17:6), (John 6:39), (John 18:9). I wish everybody could accept and allow Him into their lives. That is how best we can ever be comforted, even when we are faced with this factual monster.
My father who was a baptist preacher preached a lot of funerals for people he did not know. He always said, "We can not know whether a person has ever believed or not." If they have they will be in heaven, but if not, they will be in hell. But we always have hope that at some time in their lives they did believe the gospel. Second Timothy 2:13 says. If we believe not, He abideth faithful, He can not deny himself. Once a person has believed, they are sealed by the Holy Spirit unto the day of redemption. Ephesians 1:13 and 4:30. Born again, born of God. They may not even remember when they believed. But they are saved. On the other hand, a person may believe they are saved by how they live and what they do, but have never trusted Jesus as the only way of salvation. John 6:40 And this is the will of Him who sent me, that ALL that seeth the Son, and believeth on Him, may have everlasting life, and I will raise him up on the last day. John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave He power to become the children of God, event to them that believe on His name. First John 5:13 These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that ye may know ye have eternal life. So, we can not always know, but we can always have hope. Salvation is a personal one time belief in Jesus seals us forever as a child of God. If they have been living in sin, then they will have few rewards in heaven, but will be saved. John 6:47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that believeth on me HATH EVERLASTING LIFE. John 3:18 Believers are not condemned, but unbelievers are condemned already because they have not believed on the name of the Son of God. Anyone who has ever believed has eternal life. Whether they still believe it has no effect. No one has ever been unborn again.
Both of my parents and my older brother and my older sister all died without ever acknowledging Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior as far as I know. I proclaimed the gospel to each one, and none of them seemed to be interested. After my father died I was reading Matthew chapter 12 and I came across verse 20: "A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he has brought justice through to victory." (A quote from Isaiah 42:3). Now that is one of those verses that leaves you scratching your head wondering what the Lord is telling us, so I asked my pastor his opinion. He said a reed is a plant with a hollow core, and if disturbed it will bend over quite easily, but usually it will not completely break off unless it is further disturbed. A smoldering wick indicates that at one time the flame was burning brightly, but something caused it to die down to a smolder and is now in danger of going completely out. Some people hear the gospel but don't immediately respond, preferring instead to contemplate the consequences of making such a radical decision and "counting the cost" (something Jesus suggested in Luke 14:28) before going ahead, but later on after considering what awaits them if they procrastinate any longer (namely Hell!) receive Christ in private, but keep it to themselves due to any number of reasons. At some point they suffer a major problem in their lives (divorce, financial disaster, deadly medical diagnosis and so forth) which causes them to be "bruised." God understands this and He will not come along and sever it completely. Others received Christ at one point and were "on fire" for the Lord, then they suffer a major problem in their lives (divorce, financial disaster, deadly medical diagnosis and so forth) which causes their once bright burning flame to become a "smoldering wick." God will not come along and pinch that wick out. A little bit of faith in God is better than a lot of faith in mankind. Psalms 146:3: "Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings, who cannot save." Whether a person is a strong reed standing up strong and straight or a bruised reed bent over and hanging on for dear life, or they were at one time a bright flame that has now become a smoldering wick, God cares for them and is gentle with them, remembering their faith they had in Him, and He "will bring justice through to victory."
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