This book can serve to re-calibrate according to a biblical framework our thinking about suffering. If you are seeking to work through your understanding of theology to come to terms with where suffering and grief fits into a biblical worldview, and how Scripture’s writers regard suffering, this is a go-to book. Allow me to quote from it at length:
“Death is not simply something that happens to me. It happens to me because I am a sinner. In that sense I have caused death; I am death’s subject, not just its object. In my transgression I have attracted the just wrath of God. […]
“I do not wish to be misunderstood. I am not saying that it is wrong to rage against death, or that Paul is wrong to treat death as ‘the last enemy’ (1 Cor. 15). The Bible everywhere assumes that those who are bereaved will grieve, and their grief is never belittled. Job grieves unbearably at the loss of his ten children (Job 1:20; 2:13); so does the widow of Nain who lost her son (Luke 7:11-13), and she attracts Jesus’ compassion. And to our grieving minds there seems an inequity when wicked men live out their seventy years while little children perish.
“It is essential to grasp the theological point that stands at the heart of our lostness, and therefore of our redemption: death is, finally, the result of our sin, and therefore rage directed against God, as if he were unfair for passing the sentence that our sin deserved, is inherently foolish, as foolish as criticizing a judge for passing a just sentence on a bank robber. Our rage is better directed at the ugliness of death, the wretchedness of sin, our sense of betrayal and self-betrayal. It may be a venting of our profound loss and frustration. But thoughtful Christians will never lose sight of the origins of death, and therefore will not, at least on this ground, rage against God himself.”
“How Would You Counsel a Couple Curious about IVF?” by C. Ben Mitchell (see also: “An Interview with John Feinberg on Ethics for a Brave New World,” by Justin Taylor )
These resources are available to help those who are learning about IVF and considering the facts surrounding this process.
Here is a quote from the sermon:
‘“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.” (Rev. 7:9)
Notice that the distinct identity of every person in this vast crowd is maintained. They are from every tribe, nation, and language. The distinct individuality of every one of God’s people is preserved. What makes us different no longer divides. There is not a hint of conflict or tension. Truly, in the presence of God, “out of many, God’s people will be one.”
This speaks directly to the question: Will we know one another in heaven? Let me give you a one word answer, and then seek to support it from the Bible. Will we know one another in heaven? Yes! You will be you. I will be me. We will all be like Christ, but each of us will reflect his likeness through our own individuality.’”
Jonathan Edwards provides an illustration and explanation about how to think about God “permitting” evil and pain in this world. This subject can weigh heavily on our hearts and minds. So, if you wade through these words, I think they will bless your soul.
Here is this article’s introduction: “Have you ever felt guilty for experiencing grief? It might seem like a strange question — why would you feel guilty for grieving? But sometimes Christians do feel guilty, precisely because we believe in Jesus. Belief in Jesus, so it is thought, should remove any reason for grief. Jesus loves me. Jesus died for me. Jesus is in control. Jesus raises the dead. With such beliefs, how could any real Christian give in to grief? Believers commonly subscribe to this equation. But this equation is completely wrong — as seen in the life of Jesus himself.”
These links were originally published at Hope Mommies.