Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. (II Corinthians 1: 3-4)
At the funeral of a beloved baby boy I read these two verses of scripture: "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and to the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation ,that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort of God." According to just such an experience of comfort to myself I offered to them these four things.
That this beloved baby is beyond all doubt in the loving arms of his redeemer. The psalmist David fasted and wept for his child until God took him home, then he cleaned himself up, nourished himself with food, and went on with his life in the confident assurance that he himself would be with him again in glory.
That the death of this child was not a senseless tragedy but is according to God's eternal purpose of grace. Every believer knows that all of his elect are predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will. (Romans 8: 28; Ephesians 1: 10-11)
Also, I offered this word of comfort: He is in a better place. This is a phrase often used in funeral messages that has no application to the deceased. But in this case it does. Simply leaving this world is no assurance that we are going to a better place. "It is appointed with man once to die and after this the judgment" It will be said to some, "these shall go away into everlasting punishment but the righteous into life eternal." (Matthew 25: 46; Hebrews 9: 27) "Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth" (Revelations 14: 13) What a glorious place: It is a place where God, himself, shall wipe away all tears. A place where there is no more sin, no more doubt, no more suffering or grief. It is a place where there is no more fear, no more death and no more deceit. Those who go to this place will never again know loneliness¸ heartache, envy, or hatred. Those who go to this place shall ever be with the Lord.
I offer you this comfort that those who truly belong to the Lord will never die. They may shed this tabernacle of clay for a season but their soul is as much alive and more than it ever was.
From one broken heart to another; I offer you the comfort which God, himself, has comforted me. Believe it, hope in it, rejoice in it and give praise unto him who giveth us the victory. - Darvin Pruitt
Darvin Pruitt is pastor of Grace Baptist Church, Highway 82, Lewisville, Arkansas. You may contact him by writing to P. O. Box 328, Taylor Arkansas 71861, by...