A friend of mine died this past Saturday and we celebrated his life today, February 22. He was a devoted Christian and went on mission trips to tell others about Jesus. He also was very opinionated and set in his ways, but we loved him. He was also selfless and would do anything for you if he could. The best part though was that he died exactly the way he wanted to, reading a book and then he went to sleep.
When he woke up, he was in the Presence of God with his family and friends who had gone before him.
Life has a way of throwing you a curve like that sometimes. My wife and I just went to see him in the hospital last week and he seemed to be doing really well, although I knew he was ready to be with Jesus.
I envy him in a way…because he doesn’t have to wear glasses anymore or take pills for his diabetes and for his arthritis. None of the health problems that he had here went with him. He has a new body and it is better in every way than the one he had here. God renews us when we die so that the body that we leave here and all of its problems and corruption stays here.
We don’t really understand death but it is part of life. Yes, doctors see death as a cessation of the body’s systems. Biologically, death fits that description of all body functions shutting down. The problem with our country and the world that we live in is that there are “cancers” growing in all areas of society which are targeting the Life giving Word and trying to silence it in one way or another.Many of these groups of “cells” are in an extreme minority of less than one percent of the population, though some may be as high as three percent.
But, the effect on society that they have is deadly to the well-being of the whole. Like a poison from a certain viper which can kill you with just a drop of its poison or just the touch of a poison-arrow frog’s skin. The point that I am trying to make is that, even in the time that Paul was going on his journeys telling people of the Christ’s saving grace, there were groups which opposed him in every town that he went to. The started riots and stirred up the people so that he was nearly killed more than once.
In our time, the news tells us of many threats to Christians from groups overseas, but there are threats here at home too. Legal threats coming in the form of laws to put buffers on what can be taught in our churches or to our children. The spirit of anti-christian groups and behavior is growing and it is gaining strength. We should be praying and seeking Jesus in church and in the Bible so that we can stand and give a testimony for the defense of our faith. The King is coming back and this time it will be as a judge and a Lion of Judah!