Memorial Services are in reality for the living and on such occasions they serve a three-fold service!
I. REMEMBER THE DEPARTED
II. COMFORT THE BEREAVED
A.There is always comfort in the remembering how
of how the ones we love have touched our lives and made it different.
B.There is comfort in remembering that death is not the end.
"You see death is not death if you know the Lord. It is merely a change of place, a change of state, a transfer from one realm to another.
Death is not death, if it kills no part of us, except that which hindered us from the perfect life.
Death is not death, if it raises us in a moment from darkness to light, from weakness to strength, from sinfulness to holiness.
Death is not death, if it perfects our faith by making it sight, and let’s us behold Him in whom we have believed.
Death is not death, if it rids us of doubt and fear, sickness and disease, of sorrow and sadness.
Death is not death, if it gives us to those we loved and lost, fro whom we lived, to whom we long to live again.
Death is not death, for Christ has conquered death for Himself, and for those who trust in Him." [Death is not death, if it kills no part of us, except that which hindered us from the perfect life.
[Charles Kingsley - Sermon III - "The Victory of Life" - The Project Gutenberg EBook of The Water of Life and Other Sermons by Charles Kingsley -
C.There is comfort in knowing that __________had
established a relationship with Christ through faith.
D.There is comfort in knowing that you can see _______ again.
E.Our greatest comfort is found in Christ.
Jesus said, “come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest.”
Jesus has promised through the writer of Hebrews, “I will never leave you ..nor forsake you.”
And it is through a relationship with Christ that we are able to say as the Psalmist, “though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.”
III. PREPARE THE LIVING
We are not given a choice about whether to met death, or even when to meet death, only how to meet death.
A.REASONS WHY WE SHOULD PREPARE
1.The Brevity of Life.
Both Scripture and experience tell us that life no matter how long we live is brief.
Scripture compares life to a shadow (Job 5) or a vapor (James 4:14).
Life is short when compared with eternity, yet we have plenty of time to prepare for death.
2.The Certainty of Death
The fact is that we may not remain here the question is where shall we go! Soon or late it is certain that we all will meet death.
3.The Fact that this is the Only Time We Have To Prepare.
That fact should cause to examine our lives.
With a look back.
What has your life been up to this point? Are you satisfied with it in the face of eternity?
With a look forward.
On what do you place your hope for the future? In what are you trusting today? If today were the final day of your life, would you be ready?
B.HOW ARE WE TO PREPARE?
1.Realize that Life is a Time of Choice.
There are two place to spend eternity.
Heaven and Hell both are equally real!
“Let not your heart be troubled. You believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, so that where I am, you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know. Thomas said to Him, Lord, we do not know where You go, and how can we know the way? Jesus said to him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father but by Me.” (John 14:1-6 MKJV)
There are two ways to meet Jesus.
As Savior in this life or as Judge in the next.
“Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life! He who believes in Me, though he die, yet he shall live.And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26 MKJV)
But be assured you will meet him.
2.Realize that God is Always Seeking to guide our choice.
a.He gives us the Bible.
b.He gives the church.
c.He gives us a conscience.
d.He gives us the prayers of family and friends.
e.He gives us the Holy Spirit.
to convict us of sin, righteousness & judgment to come.
f.He gives us the cross.
With these God seeks to guide our choice and indeed, we must climb over all of these obstacles to remain lost.
3. We Must Face the Challenge.
“Be ye also ready for in such an hour, as you think not, the son of man cometh” (Matt 24:44)
The hour of death is coming for each of us. It can’t be long it may be soon.