The Northfield

  2535 Shore Road

  Northfield, NJ 08225

  (609)646-1181

Church of Christ

05/07/2014

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The Righteous Dead In A Blessed Place


"Then I heard a voice from heaven say, 'Write: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.'" "Yes," says the Spirit, they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them" (Rev.14:13).

A brother of mine in the Lord passed away this past Friday. For those of us who knew Steve, these are words of comfort, both for you and me... The apostle John heard the words found in today's verse while on the island of Patmos, as the Book of Revelation was given to him through spiritual inspiration. It tells of the blessed state that awaits those righteous people that have died. Losing the physical presence of someone we love can be a heart-wrenching time, especially when the passing is unexpected. We are sometimes haunted with the thoughts of the things we wanted to say to them that we did not. The comfort we find is in God's plan for those that die in His Son. The apostle Paul actually wrote of death as a net gain... "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain" (Phil.1:21). Paul was torn between continuing his present life on earth, and that eternal promise of life after death that awaited him. He said: "I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far... " (V 23) The spiritual part of Paul wanted to be with the Lord, even though he desired the physical part of life to remain with those he loved. He described the righteous dead as "asleep in Jesus, yet living with Him, and coming with Him..." He described Paradise (2 Cor.12:1-4) as now in the third heaven. (the presence of God) Death for the righteous now promises something greater than we can even imagine... We all want to cling to life, which is a completely natural thing. We all miss the presence of one that we loved, which is also natural... But the hope of our inheritance of living with Jesus is an awesome one. I will write about the imagery that consoles tomorrow. I am so sad that my brother Steve is no longer with me, but rejoice that he is in a better place...

Have a wonderful day... Make your little part of the world better... Love mark Phil.4:11

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