When a funeral can be better

This MFM’s title might astound you. Well, then, you will be more astounded by King Solomon’s words in Ecclesiastes 7:2-4

2 “It is better to go to the house of mourning than to go to the house of feasting, for this is the

end of all mankind, and the living will lay it to heart.

3 Sorrow is better than laughter, for by sadness of face the heart is made glad.

4 The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, but the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.”

Solomon is not saying that sorrow is always better than laughter or that feasting is always wrong. But he is making the good point that the earthly life of each one of us will end some day and that, therefore, you and I should not live as though our lives will continue on forever here. Don’t live a shallow life in which you don’t soberly consider what your end is — that’s one of the things Solomon is saying to you (v2). He also means that at times sorrow can be better than laughter, because being sad at times can help us to cling to the only lasting and ultimate hope after death (God’s heavenly inheritance in Christ). If you only: ‘eat, drink and be merry’ and ‘party, party, party’ then wise king Solomon says you are a fool.

We are all heading to death, so are you living in light of this fact? Or are you just blithely stumbling through life?

Most Australians don’t like to think about the fact that each of us will die one day, or think about life after death. But that is very unwise.

I’ve conducted two funerals in the last four weeks — and they are always and naturally sad and difficult. However, when Christians die, they die with the sure and certain hope of a bodily resurrection. So, for our departed fellow Christians we do “not grieve as others who have no hope” (1 Thessalonians 4:13).

Maybe you’ve never thought about how to prepare for death. Or, possibly you’ve recently been ‘forgetting’ to live in light of and in accordance with your future death. Well, put your trust, your hope, your faith in Christ’s death and resurrection for you — for he is the forerunner and model and guarantee of your resurrection to a glorious body, living forever with the God of all grace. So, why not read 1 Thessalonians 4:3-5:11 today?

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