March 20, 2019 | by: 0 Comments|
Brothers & Sisters,
As we studied Deuteronomy 14 together recently, we learned that the ancient people of God were not to grieve and mourn like the peoples of Canaan and the surrounding nations. God’s people have always grieved with hope. What is more, in the last couple of weeks, a few members of our congregation have been touched by the death of close family members.
All of this reminded me of what I read recently in Vaughn Roberts little, but immensely wise book on assisted suicide. While the book is aimed primarily at the subject of assisted suicide, it addresses the subject of dying beyond that narrow scope. With respect to how we ought to engage others in the face of death, Roberts writes:
Engaging people who are dying will present an opportunity to share the Christian hope. We do not subscribe to the bleak worldview of a world without God—that when we are dead, we are gone. Nor do we cover over the reality of death with sentimentality. Death is real, because sin is real. And there is a judgment to face after death. But there is also real hope. Hope, because the suffering and death of the Lord Jesus Christ can bring us safely through the judgment. Hope, because Jesus rose from the grave on the third day and has defeated death. Hope, because he promises an eternity of joy-filled life to those who place their trust in him. The process of dying may still be bitter, and the heartache of those who suffer is real—but death has lost its sting. So Christians can face the grave with the certain hope of what is to come when Christ returns, “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away (Revelation 21:4).”
[Vaughan Roberts, Assisted Suicide: A Talking Points Book (Purcellville, VA: The Good Book Company, 2017), 61-62.]
This is our hope. May we graciously share it with all.
Warmly in Christ,