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Grief and Hope

The Verdict / John Munro
The Truth Network Radio
August 30, 2021 2:25 pm

Grief and Hope

The Verdict / John Munro

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August 30, 2021 2:25 pm

Dr. John H. Munro August 29, 2021 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

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On Sunday, April 25, 2021, life for our family, the Monroe family, changed suddenly, dramatically, and profoundly. In a matter of a few short hours, our son Christopher, known to so many of you, died from COVID-19. And just a short distance from here at Atrium in Pineville, I stood that Sunday at the side, I stood at the side of my dead son and experienced a depth of emotion I had never known before. I had seen death before many times. Both my parents have died, two of my brothers have died. I've had many close friends, colleagues who have died, and I've lost count of the number of funerals I've taken. So, more than most people, I know about grief, I know about heartache, sorrow, bereavement, the shock at sudden loss, dealing in situations in life which just do not make sense. I've experienced much of that, but I've never experienced this profound grief. A whole remains which we know in this lifetime will never be filled.

Job writes in Job 7 verse 10, he says, he returns no more to his house, nor his place, no him anymore. Many of you know what I'm talking about. We miss his voice, his jokes, coming into our house and giving us a huge hug, lifting up his little mother, which he could do very easily. And many of you have experienced that pain, that grief, that loss, that devastation. What can I say to you?

Treasure those that you love. Many of you attended Christopher's funeral, which was held at Calvary just a few days later, and we have received a huge number of letters, cards, emails, texts, notes sent to us expressing your love and your prayers. Many of you have spoken to us personally about the passing of Christopher, and for all of your love, for all of your kindness, in so many ways, we are deeply, deeply thankful. And this community at Calvary has, in this time of devastating loss, has been of incalculable blessing to us.

The Bible says that when one member suffers, all suffer. And we thank you for suffering with us, not only with us, but many others in our life here at Calvary. And you have reminded us, and we needed to be reminded of the promises of Holy Scripture, not of cliches, but you have pointed us to the Word of God, and you have reminded us that our magnificent Lord Jesus Christ still stands as the resurrection and the life, that He is the resurrection and the life. And this book, the Word of God, has been our strong anchor, and to its pages we have turned over and over again. And as a preacher of the Scripture, I've tried to sort through my own thoughts and feelings, and with all of the implications of Christopher's passing. And I ask you to open your Bible with me to 1 Thessalonians 4, because what good may I, what many of you have experienced, is by no means unique. And I think how wonderful it is that Paul 2,000 years ago writes of this very subject.

And here it is in 1 Thessalonians 4, verse 13. He says, I don't want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep. A beautiful description of death for the Christian.

Death for the Christian is described as falling asleep. I don't want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. So, today, I want to speak about a profound grief, a living hope, and an eternal future. First of all, a profound grief. I want to say four things about grief. There are many, many things that could be said, but here are four at least.

There are many, many others. But four things that have impacted me as I've thought about this subject. And Paul says that we do grieve. First of all, grief is a reality of life in this fallen world.

Could you imagine being a parent of one of these fallen Marines, getting that knock at the door to be told that your son or your daughter had been killed in that suicide bombing? This is a reality of life in this fallen world. And many of you, most of you, have experienced grief, the death of a parent, the death of a child, a brother or sister, a close friend, a grandparent. Death is a reality in this fallen world. And apart from the return of the Lord Jesus, every single one of us sitting here will die. When I practiced law in Scotland, the Law Society of Scotland one year was encouraging people to make their wills.

And someone in the Law Society came up with this slogan, which I thought was very well done. It said, signing your will is not signing your death warrant. The person who came up with that slogan understood that although we understand that we're all going to die, it is very, very difficult for us to face the fact that we will die. Other people die. Other people get killed. Other people get COVID. Other people are in car accidents.

Other people have heart attacks, but not me. That's going to happen away in the future. And many people delay making their wills because they can't handle the fact of their own mortality. And when I was a student at Dallas Theological Seminary, I remember a professor talking about funerals and grief and saying to us that we had to face our own mortality.

And that's difficult, isn't it? Difficult to think that you will die. You may be a little boy. You may be in your 90s. But death is no respecter of ages. People of all ages die. Face your own mortality.

That was wise advice. So grief is a normal part of life. You will not escape it. And can I say, it is not sinful to grief, to grieve. How could we not grieve over the passing of a loved one?

It's unimaginable. And I realize there are some Christians, I'm sure they're well-meaning, when someone dies you say, well, it's a great celebration. Well, I don't feel like celebrating. And so, rather than saying we have a memorial service, it's a celebration of life.

And I understand what that means. My mother died almost two years ago, and we did celebrate her life. She lived in 94. Last couple of years she had some dementia, and so we celebrated the fact that now her suffering was over.

She had said a few years ago she wanted to be with the Lord. She was a godly woman, and we celebrated that. But when people die young, and when it comes home, it's very difficult to celebrate, isn't it? Isn't it very interesting in the Old Testament? Have you noticed this when the patriarchs died?

Do you know what happened? They spent many days in mourning, and they took great care of the burial of their loved one. A few weeks ago, as we were going through Matthew, in Matthew chapter 14, remember the circumstances of the death of John the Baptist.

Evil Herod cut off his head, and we read in Matthew 14 verse 12 that when John the Baptist was executed by that evil king and beheaded, his disciples and how they must have loved John, his disciples came. Matthew says this, they came and took the body and buried it, and they went and told Jesus. I think that's beautiful. Isn't that what we do when a loved one dies? We take care of the body. We show respect. We mourn.

And what do we do then? We go and tell Jesus. Jesus loved John the Baptist. Jesus must have mourned the passing of John the Baptist. When Stephen, the first Christian martyr died, Luke records in Acts 8 verse 2 that devout men buried Stephen and made great lamentation over him. You say, but he was in heaven. He got this vision of Jesus standing to receive him.

Why weren't they celebrating? You know, sometimes I think we're more spiritual than the Bible. We grieve. Don't deny your humanity when a loved one passes away.

It's horrible. Many of you don't need me to tell you that. It's unbelievably devastating, and there is great lamentation. Yes, we rejoice that they're with the Lord. So Paul, as he writes to the Thessalonians, is not telling them not to grieve. Grief, number one, is a reality of life in this fallen world. Secondly, in our grief, we know our God loves us and is with us. If you're grieving, I want you to understand this. In our grief, we know that God loves us and is with us. As a wee boy, I was taught that God loved me. I still believe that. But that does not mean that life always goes the way that I want.

Often, it doesn't. But it does mean that the God who made me in his image and that the God who accomplished my salvation through the glorious work of my Lord Jesus Christ is a God who continues to love me. Yes, loved with an everlasting love.

Isn't that wonderful to think? That we are loved with an everlasting love, a love which will not let us go. And as Paul so brilliantly argues at the end of Romans chapter 8, he reminds us that there is no force in the whole universe, not all of the darkness, not all the foes of hell and of Satan, and of death itself can separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus, Christ Jesus our Lord.

We don't always feel it. But in our grief, remember, God loves you. And God will never leave me. Yes, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.

Your rod and your staff, they comfort me. In Psalm 46, that wonderful psalm, the earth may give way and the mountains be moved into the depth of the sea. Do you get the picture in Psalm 46? The psalmist's life has completely changed. The ground around him has crumbled.

It's falling into the sea. He paints this terrible, natural disaster, and yet he says this, God is my refuge and strength, a present help in time of trouble. God is our present help.

When we grieve much of it, we were on our own. People can't enter into it, but God is right there. He's a present help in trouble. Isaiah 41 verse 10, Christopher's favorite verse, which was tattooed on his wrist, and I'm not saying students go out and get a tattoo, but my son did it and he didn't ask my permission, but he chose a good verse. Isaiah 41 verse 10, fear not, for I am, what? With you. Nothing to fear, because God is with us. Hebrews 13, the Lord is my helper. I will not fear.

I will never leave you nor forsake you. In my grief, I remember this, that God loves me and that God will never, ever, ever leave me. Third, in our grief, we know that God is working all things for our good. This is hard, but it's true.

It's a promise. Romans 8, 28, Paul writes, and we know, we know. This is for followers of Christ. Perhaps you don't know, but for followers of Christ, we know that for those who love God, all things work together for good for those who are called according to His purpose. Now, Paul is not saying that everything in life is good. It's not. The death of a loved one isn't good.

It's bad. It's unbelievably devastating. Yet through the darkness, through the difficulties, through the disappointments, through the confusions of life, God is so great, God is so magnificent. He is the Almighty God that He takes all of the circumstances of life, even the bad, horrible things, and He works them for our good. See, not only is He a Father who loves me, He's a mighty God who can do all things, and He's so powerful, He can take these horrible situations of your life and work them for your good. And in our grief, we have to understand that He is God, and we are not.

He's God. Isaiah writes, Isaiah 45 verse 15, truly you are a God who hides Himself. And in our grief, it sometimes seems that God is hidden. We can't see Him. We can't feel Him. He may seem to have abandoned us.

He has hidden Himself. But although we do not understand all of His ways, we are to trust Him in the darkness, in the grief, in the confusion. He is my heavenly Father, and I am His child. And God has plans for my life and your life.

And can I say the obvious? God's much smarter than you are. God's much wiser, and His plans for us are perfect. And rather than seeking answers and explanations, and I like things to be explained, believe me. I like things to be said out in a logical way, so I understand them. But rather than seeking answers and explanations, God and I, we claim the promise of Romans 8, 28, that He is working all things for our good, in our grief.

Here's the fourth one. In our grief, we know God understands our sorrows and heals the broken-hearted. I found great comfort in the designation given by the Old Testament prophet Isaiah of the coming Messiah. Do you know how he describes the coming Messiah in Isaiah 53? He describes Him as the Man of — we sing it — Man of Sorrows. What a name for the Son of God who came. He says He's the Man of Sorrows and acquainted with Grief.

That's a strange thing to think. Nowadays, we would want the Man of Fun, the Man of Excitement, the Man of Charisma. Our Savior comes into this fallen, broken world, and He comes as a Man of Sorrows and acquainted with Grief. He takes our sorrows. He takes our griefs. Truly God and truly man. Luther said that no man ever suffered like Jesus.

Do you think your sufferings are bad? The sufferings of Jesus were much, much more than we have experienced. He grieved and He understands our grief and our sorrows. Remember that amazing scene in John 11 where Jesus is at the grave of Lazarus and He's with the sisters Martha and Mary. And we read that most poignant, the shortest verse in the Bible, John 11 verse 35, we read, Jesus wept. Did you see Him at the grave?

He's Almighty God. He's going to speak and Lazarus is going to come forth. But He grieves. He understands the pain and the sorrow of death. And in our grief, think of this, our Savior weeps with us.

He groans. He understands. He gave His only Son for us. The psalmist says, the Lord is near to the brokenhearted. Psalm 34 verse 18, and the Lord Jesus said in these wonderful words, blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. And in our deep grief, in our profound grief, God knows and God understands. Augustine says in his confessions, the tears stream down and I let them flow as freely as they would, making of them a pillow for my heart. On them it rested.

I like that. And God, the Holy Spirit is described as the comforter. And He strengthens us. He helps us. He comforts us. We appreciate the comfort of friends and our brothers and sisters in Christ.

That's wonderful. And that's one of the ways that God comforts us. But He also comforts us directly through the Holy Spirit who's the comforter and through the comfort of the Holy Scriptures. Yes, death is an enemy. But as we began by reminding ourselves that enemy has been defeated, that weeping may last for the night, but joy comes in the morning. We do grieve. The pain, the sadness are overwhelming at times. There is a profound grief. But secondly, our grief points us to a living hope. Let me read the passage there in 1 Thessalonians 4. 1 Thessalonians 4, I read with you verse 13. Let me read to the end of the chapter.

Follow it with me. We don't want you to be uninformed brothers about those who are asleep that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so through Jesus God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep. For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with a voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will always be with the Lord.

Therefore, encourage one another with these words. A living hope. We're people of hope.

Jesus Christ is coming back. Peter in 1 Peter 1 describes this hope as a living hope. Now you must understand what a biblical hope is. It's not a false hope. It's not wishful thinking.

It's not me saying I hope when Hurricane Ida hits the United States later today that there will be no loss of life. That's a hope. It's a good hope, but it's not necessarily based on reality.

That's not the way the word is used in Scripture. This living hope, what is it? It is a sure expectation of what will certainly occur in the future.

How can you say that? Because the promises of God are always fulfilled. You make a promise, you can be well-meaning, but it may not be fulfilled. Circumstances out of your control may occur. That never happens with God. Everything is under His control. When God makes a promise, it is absolutely certain.

This hope, this living hope that we have is not diminished by difficult circumstances. Now some of you know I like British soccer, and somebody said, we're tired of your soccer illustrations. I mean, too bad, right? I mean, it could be worse. It could be baseball illustrations, right?

Sorry. Or even worse, basketball, right? So I'm talking about a great game. So I like watching British soccer, Manchester United in particular, but when the schedule is fixed, they don't consult with me as to the time of the games.

So rarely can I watch the game live. So what do we do? We record. One of the greatest devices of mankind, wasn't it? The DVR?

Give that guy the Nobel Peace Prize or some kind of prize. Watch it. And so supposing I record the game and I go home. Sometimes, even some of you here, please do not do this, want to tell me the score, right? I've even gone home and had a voice message, and I've foolishly listened to it, and the person is saying, oh, your team won or lost.

I don't want to hear it, right? But sometimes when I'm watching the game, which has been pre-recorded, I know the score, and I'm watching the game, and I may put it on, and my team may be playing terrible. They may be behind. They may be 3-0 down, but I know this, that victory is 100% assured because the game has been recorded. It will happen. However bad it seems at the time, victory is absolutely assured. And however bad it seems at the time, and however difficult life for you is at the moment, God has promised. His promises never, ever fail. And as we sang at the beginning of the service, this is our sure and certain hope.

You say, what's the hope? Jesus says in John 14, I will come again. One of our themes for this year is wait for the return of Jesus. Notice verse 16, Paul says, the Lord Himself will descend from heaven. The Lord Himself, not an angel, He's coming Himself for us.

He is coming back personally. The Lord Himself will descend from heaven. And then there's three supernatural sounds. He says, with a cry of command. John 5, Jesus says, don't marvel at this for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear His voice and come out. Think of this cry of command. All those who have died in Christ will hear the shout of command and will be raised from the dead.

Some of you have loved ones buried in magnolia gardens. I like to picture this, when that cry of command comes. Every one of them whose faith is in Christ will hear that voice and will be raised from the dead.

A cry of command. Secondly, verse 16, the voice of an archangel. When the poor man died in the story Jesus told at the end of Luke chapter 16, Jesus said He was carried by the angels to the side of Abraham. A believer dies and they're carried by the angels to Abraham's side, a picture of paradise. And perhaps here at the rapture, Michael the great archangel will organize all of the angels to escort believers in Jesus Christ through the territory of the prince of the power of the air to meet Christ in the air. There's a third sound.

What is it? A cry of command, the voice of an archangel and with the sound of the trumpet of God. If the cry of command is for believers who have died and the voice of the archangel is for angels, this trumpet is the signal for all believers in Jesus Christ who are alive when He comes. Now, I love the trumpet.

Isn't it a beautiful instrument? Can you imagine hearing the trumpet of God? The trumpet of God, which all believers in Jesus Christ will hear.

Why the trumpet? The announcement that the Lord Jesus Christ is coming back as He said, I will come again. And notice what happens. The dead in Christ will rise first. I'm often asked what happens when a believer in Jesus dies.

Well, their body is buried in the ground. They have fallen asleep in Jesus, but their soul spirit goes immediately to be with Christ. Jesus said to the thief on the cross, today you'll be with me in paradise today. So death for the believer is away from the body, absent from the body, and at home with the Lord. But when this happens, Christ followers who are presently with the Lord, their soul spirit, their bodies, yes their bodies, await this great day of resurrection. And then verse 17, then we who are alive, wouldn't it be wonderful to be part of that group, who are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. That is, there is a generation that will not die.

We will go directly into the Lord's presence without dying. I'm sure the disappearance of millions of followers of Christ throughout the world will be explained away. There's all this talk nowadays about UFOs. Perhaps people say, well, they disappeared in UFOs, or the aliens got them.

I don't know. But what I do know is this, not one authentic follower of Jesus Christ will be left behind. We who are alive will be caught up. Think of this, we'll be united with all of our loved ones. And you're looking forward to that. I look forward to seeing again my parents, my brothers, my grandparents, friends, certainly our son Christopher. What a reunion that will be.

Can you imagine the joy? People say, well, we know one another, of course we'll know one another. We'll be much smarter then than we are now. And Paul is writing this in 1 Thessalonians 4 to encourage people. It wouldn't be much of encouragement if you're kind of an amorphous spirit up there. No, our bodies are resurrected, our individuality and our individual identity is preserved for all of eternity.

We're caught up. And this is why these verses are such an encouragement to us. We'll rejoice that never, ever, ever again will we part.

Never again will we be separated. This is our living hope, profound grief, living hope, third and eternal future. You say, do you believe this John? I believe this with all my heart.

Did you get the last verse there or verse 17? We'll meet the Lord in the air and then says Paul, so we will always be with the Lord. Or so we will forever be with the Lord.

Forever with the Lord. Our Savior who loves us with everlasting love. Our Savior who died on the cross for our sins. Our Savior who rose again for our justification. Our Savior who is our great high priest who presently is interceding for us right now at the throne room of God.

This one is coming back for us. And for all of eternity, we will always be with the Lord. When we've been there 10,000 years, bright shining as the sun, there'll be no less days to sing His praise than when we'd first begun. We will be in a new heaven and a new earth. Turn to Revelation 21 and a few comments about heaven.

I have four of them. First, heaven is the very presence of God. One of the things that happens when a loved one dies is that we think much more about heaven, don't we?

We think, what like is it for them? What actually is going on in heaven? Well, heaven is the very presence of God. Revelation 21 verse 1, I saw a new heaven and a new earth for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and the sea was no more. I always wonder about that because I love the sea.

But it does say that. Perhaps there's water and it's called something else. It's difficult for me to think of it without no sea, but there we are.

Sea in the Scriptures often presented in a negative way. But verse 2, that was a digression. Verse 2, I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them and they will be His people and God Himself will be with them as their God. Many questions about heaven, but this we do know that heaven is the very presence of God. And in the new heavens and the new earth, God will dwell forever with His people. Remember Jesus said to His disciples in John 14, where I am, there you may be also. He tells them, I'm going to come again so that where I am, heaven, there you may be also. So heaven is wonderful.

It's glorious. Number one, because God is there, the very presence of God. Secondly, heaven is the removal of all evil. Verse 4, He will wipe away every tear from their eyes and death shall be no more. Neither shall there be mourning or crying or pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.

Life as we know it on earth, with its heartaches, with its sorrows, with its tragedies, with its grief, with its bereavements, with its viruses, with its funerals, with its disappointments, will be eternally gone. Fear, worry, anxiety, death are forever gone. Heaven is the removal of all evil. Everlasting joy, Isaiah says, will be upon their hearts. Sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

There'll be neither grief nor pain nor cry to cast a shadow over the eternal day. Heaven is the removal of all evil. Third, heaven reveals the glory and the beauty of God. Revelation 21 verse 10, He carried me away in the Spirit to a great high mountain and showed me the holy city of Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper clear as crystal.

Verse 23, and the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives its light and its lamp is the Lamb. Think of the beauty of heaven. You know, this world, this fallen world is breathtakingly beautiful, isn't it?

You travel. Every country's got its own beauty. And whether you think of the beauty of a small flower or looking at the expanse of the ocean or the stars or the mountains or the beauty of a newborn baby, this world is beautiful, but it's fallen.

It's not perfect. Can you imagine what it was prior to the fall? And can you imagine the beauty of the new heavens and the new earth? Verse 16, the city, this is the new Jerusalem, lies foursquare, its length the same as its width, and He measured the city with His rod. Twelve thousand stadia, its length and width and height are equal. So, the new Jerusalem, which is part of the new heavens and the new earth, is a cube. And twelve thousand stadia amount to approximately 1,400 miles. Can you imagine a cube 1,400 miles, 14 by 14 by 14?

If you go up high to go into space, as a few billionaires have done, that's only 62 miles. Can you imagine going up high 1,400 miles, 1,400 in width, 1,400 in length? Amazing. The beauty is described here in Revelation 21. And you say, well, is this just a description? What will it be really like?

Well, the description is unbelievably beautiful. And we, who are followers of Christ, through His grace, we will be there. There's going to be the reign of a thousand years and a millennium, when we will reign with Christ in my own little way, I think, during the millennium. I hope God, I know He's gracious, I want Him to give me just a little part of a Scottish island to reign over. And I picture walking with Christopher.

He loves Scotland, I don't know why, but He loves Scotland. Perfect temperature, low seventies. God doesn't ask me the temperature, but I think it'll be low seventies.

The sun in the morning, light drizzle in the afternoon, right? Perfect walking. And just think of the communion that we will have. Just think of the love that you have for your husband, your wife, your son, your fiancé, your friends. But think of that love perfect. Think of perfect love.

Think of perfect joy. Think of perfect peace in this unimaginably beautiful new heaven and new earth. And through the grace of God, this is our eternal future.

Here's the fourth one about heaven. I'll mention before I conclude, in heaven we will see His face. Chapter 22, verse 3, no longer will there be anything cursed, but the throne of God and the Lamb will be in it, and His servants will worship Him. They will see His face, and His name will be on their foreheads, and night will be no more. There will be no need of light or of lamp or sun for the Lord.

God will be the light, and they will reign forever and ever. In heaven, we will see God and know God. Heaven is where the glory of God shines in blazing and brilliant fullness. Think of the glory of God.

We sing about the glory of God. As people looked at our Savior, they saw something of His glory in His incarnation, but think of being in the presence of God and seeing the glory of God. But even in heaven, we will not be able to comprehend the infinite glory and beauty and majesty of this great God who loved us. But, says John, we will see His face. We will see His face. Peter says, whom having not seen, we love, in 1 Peter 1. I've never seen the face of God, but I'm going to see His face.

Think of this. What grace is this? That God not only in His grace saves us, God not only in His grace forgives all of our sins.

That's incredible. Totally undeserving based on the death, burial, and resurrection of our glorious Savior. God not only forgives our sins, God is going to take us into His own house, into His own house, into the Father's house, into His very presence, so that we will see His face.

What grace is this? John says that when He comes, we'll be like Him, for we will see Him as He is. Once we are converted to Jesus Christ and saved by His grace, God through His own Holy Spirit begins to work on us, doesn't He? And step by step, we're becoming more and more like Jesus.

I trust that's true. That's called our sanctification. But we are far from perfect.

But one day, we will see Him and we'll be like Him, we'll be glorified, and we will see the face of God. An eternal future. History is rapidly moving to the greatest of all space flights.

And this space flight is not reserved for a few billionaires who don't know what to do with their money. No. This is for every believer in Jesus Christ. Jesus is coming. He's coming quickly. He's coming like a thief in the night. I ask you, are you ready?

Are you ready? Thomas Watson says, eternity to the godly is a day that has no sunset. Eternity to the wicked is a night that has no sunrise. For all of eternity will either be in that eternal day or in that eternal night. In the eternal day, there is no sunset. In the eternal night, in hell itself, there is no sunrise. I have to ask you, are you ready to meet God?

Are you? Do you know Christ? You say, well, I've gone to church. It's wonderful to go to church. You say, well, God's answered my prayers in the past.

That's great. God is very gracious. I'm asking you, do you know Jesus Christ personally? Has there come a time when you've repented of your sin and come to Christ and received Him as your Savior? A profound grief, a living hope, an eternal future. And so we are encouraged. And so we stand strong in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and saying as the Bible ends, even so come, Lord Jesus. Father, thank You for Your grace.

There's so much that we don't understand about our own lives, about our own lives, about You, about our future. But we thank You for what You've revealed in Your precious Word. And we thank You that You so loved the world that You gave Your only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. And Father, comfort, the sorrowing.

We think of the families even at Calvary, that we've mentioned, draw close to them. May they know the reality of this living hope. May they look forward to this eternal future.

And we anticipate that day when we will be in that great city, that beautiful city. Meantime, Father, You're with us. You strengthen us. You help us. Bless us. In Christ's name. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-09-12 07:22:16 / 2023-09-12 07:36:56 / 15

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