Solomon wasn’t merely talking about falling trees when he wrote:
“and if the tree fall toward the south, or toward the north, in the place where the tree falleth, there it shall be.” Ecclesiates 11:3
For the very spiritual state in which we die, we shall remain for eternity.
This principle holds true for the unjust, as well as those who are living holy in Christ.
“He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.” Revelation 22:11-15
The Bible tells us that ” it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” Hebrews 9:27
The topic of a loved ones mortality, and life after death, and impending judgment, will likely confront every Believer at some point in time in their Christian walk.
As a Christian, it would be fatal to suggest to family members and friends that the deceased is “in a better place” if their life showed no evidence of living for God through Jesus Christ.
It is even more fatal for Pastors or Priests who perform a funeral service for a non Christian to multiply the deception, by suggesting that those in attendance at the funeral service, that they too can go on living unrepentant, unchanged lives, and that one day they too will see their departed loved one in that same “better place”.
One will not “rest in peace” apart from the hope of the resurrection unto eternal life with Jesus
This is extremely dangerous territory for Christians to tread upon by offering empty platitudes about an unbelieving loved one who has passed away with no evidence whatsoever of a life surrendered and yielded to Jesus Christ.
This is especially true given that the Scriptures are completely contrary to this very idea.
“Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat:
Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
Ye shall know them by their fruits.
Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit;
but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 7: 13-21.
As we continue to stand for the truth of the Gospel and for the authority of the Word of God, the way that leads to life will continue to narrow before us as friends and family members push further and further away from the very truths which unite those of us who are in Christ.
Christian fellowship jumps over all of the worldly barriers that separate us.
Christian fellowship even jumps over the barrier of death, which separates us from those who are not living their lives surrendered to the Lordship of Christ who have been born of water and of the Spirit.
There is one barrier that fellowship cannot jump over however, and that is the barrier of sin.
It’s devastating as Christians to lose those whom we love without the hope of the resurrection unto eternal life that would reunite us in Christ Jesus .
It’s also at the most challenging times in our faith (as in the case of standing for the truth in the face of the death of a loved one), which will define those who are truly in Christ.
Will we fear offending family and friends at those crucial times in our Christian walk and deceive them by lying to them?
Or will we fear God by standing firm in faith and love by telling them the truth?
“Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. “But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.” – Matthew 10:32-33
We will know the spiritual condition of a loved one by their words, and by their fruit.
One merely need to listen to them speak.
Do they, or have they ever spoken about Jesus Christ?…
If not, they deny Him before men.
Have they ever shared the gospel of Jesus Christ?
Have they ever made even a single disciple of Jesus, which is commanded by God as part of the great commission?
Are they even serving Him at all?
The Scriptures tells us that “for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” – Matthew 10:34 –
If you want to know what a persons spiritual condition is, listen to their words, or better yet, visit their facebook page.
If Christ is absent from their conversation, He is most likely absent from their lives as well.
There is no such thing as an “undercover disciple of Jesus.”
I want to encourage fellow believers to be strong, and to remember the words of Christ when He said:
“”Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.”
The truth of the Word of God will divide.
It will divide you from family, and it will divide you from friends.
And ultimately, at the end of life, it will divide believers from unbelievers, and it will separate unbelievers from God.
Jesus elaborated in His Dividing Word even further in Matthew 10 when He told us:
“”For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; “and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’
“He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.
“And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.”
Fellow Disciples, I want to encourage you to take up your cross and to follow after Jesus.
Even if it means that you end up finding yourself to be considered “as good as dead” by family members and friends.
After all, the cross that we take up will lead us to the place where we must die… to self, and to sin
Remember… For every death in Christ… there is a resurrection.
“Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.
For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil”.