April 18, 2006 (edited Dec. 2016)
The Land of the Dying
Owen, in his last hours, dictated a short letter to a friend. His secretary had written, “I am yet in the land of the living,” when Owen said, “Stop, change that. Write, I am yet in the land of the dying, but I hope soon to be in the land of the living.” - Source unkown
Romans 8:18-23 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. 19 For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. 20 For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected the same in hope, 21 Because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. 23 And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.
Truly we live in a dying world that is in bondage to corruption. Death and dying are as common as the vegetables and meat on our plates at dinner time.
Not long ago I was looking at a web site that showed a picture of a mountain in West Africa where a jeep two missionary doctors were traveling in rolled off the road and they were both killed. The writer (who later became my father-in-law) commented, "One would not think death could be so beautiful from a distance." And it was a beautiful mountain in a rugged sort of way.
And yet, think of this splendid, comforting thought: In spite of the dying state of the world we live in, how wonderfully beautiful it is! What beauty surrounds us - mountains, seas, skies, forests, plains, and even the austere beauty of the deserts. The ornamental plumage of birds, the fine architecture of seashells, the delicate coloring and structure of flowers all declare the tender care of a wise Creator. How gorgeously the Lord has arrayed this dying world, that He intended to be a living one! Think then what heaven must be like - the true land of the living!
Think what the Kingdom will be like! We are told the desert shall blossom as the rose,
Isaiah 35:1-2 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the LORD, and the excellency of our God.
Think of the new heavens and new earth. It defies the abilities of our feeble minds!
Revelation 21:1-3 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
As the children of the living God we are a living people with a living future! We will see what this glorious creation will be like when it is no longer under the bondage of corruption!
John 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
Job 19:25-27 For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me.
(First posted on this blog - 9/11/11)