Man is the only creature who knows he’s going to die, and he’s trying desperately to forget it. Fear of death keeps people in bondage. But Jesus came to deliver you from that fear. You’re not ready to live until you’re no longer afraid to die. If you’re a child of God, He will be with you (Hebrews 13:5). The child of God can smile at death.
We’ve learned in our current series “Practicing the Presence of God” what a great man Joseph was. He lived to be 110, but like everyone, came to the day when he died (Genesis 50:22-23). But before he did, he said to his brothers,
“Take my bones with you when you go. Carry me out of Egypt back home to Canaan”
Was this little statement important? It was. When the New Testament comments on his life, that one statement put him in Hebrews chapter 11, the “faith Hall of Fame.”
Would you like to have the assurance Joseph had? Three thoughts to remember:
Remember God’s unbreakable promises.
You’ll not have any peace in death until you get the promises of God down in your heart. Joseph’s faith was rooted in an unbreakable promise God made 300 years beforehand to Abraham, and Joseph knew it: After 400 years, God’s people would leave Egypt and return to Canaan (Genesis 15: 13-14). Joseph could say “Take me with you” because the Word of God was written on his heart.
Do you want to have God’s presence at the time of death? You cannot do it without faith.
What is faith?
Faith isn’t naming it and claiming it. You can’t claim it until God names it. Faith isn’t positive thinking, following a hunch, hoping for the best, a feeling of optimism, self-confidence, or wishing on a star. Hebrews 11:1 tells us, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hope in the Bible means rock-ribbed assurance. Faith is getting a word from God and believing it.
Faith is absolute assurance based on the Word of God, and He cannot lie. Joseph had soaked his soul in the unbreakable promises of the Word of God (Romans 10:17).
Rest in God’s unshakeable power.
God’s promises without His power mean nothing. How could Joseph be so sure God would return them to Canaan? Because He is all-powerful Almighty God.
Faith isn’t shaken by appearances.
When Joseph quoted this promise, from all appearances there was no reason to think of ever leaving Egypt. They were in a place of privileged position.
Faith isn’t shaken by human reason.
Don’t ever re-examine the Word of God in the light of present-day circumstances. God’s Word surpasses human reasoning.
Faith isn’t shaken by human emotions.
Emotions don’t matter when it comes to God’s Word. Feelings come and go—they’re deceiving. Never consult your emotions about a promise of God. Put your confidence in the His unshakeable power.
Faith isn’t shaken by delay.
Joseph stood on a promise that was already 200 years old. It would be another 200 before it came to fruition. Faith can wait. When God says He’s going to do something, it may take five hundred years, but He will do it. Delay means nothing.
Receive God’s unmistakable peace.
Joseph’s success in Egypt meant nothing. He wanted to be a part of what God was doing. His faith was rewarded; he was buried near Abraham in Shechem (Joshua 24:32).
A great resurrection lies ahead for Joseph and every person who dies in Christ. (Daniel 12:2-3, John 5:28-29). One day the trumpet will sound, and the dead in Christ will rise first (1 Thessalonians 4:16).
If you know the unbreakable promises and unshakeable power of God, you will experience His undeniable peace when you come to die.
Friend, the Bible says, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring forth” (Proverbs 27:1). Every casket you see, every funeral you attend, reminds you today is the day of salvation. Give your heart to Jesus, and you can smile at death.
Have you given your heart to Jesus? We’d like you to discover Jesus & find Him as your Savior. Click here to follow Pastor Adrian Rogers in a prayer to give your heart to Jesus.
In 2020 especially, give those you love the personal touch only a hand-signed Christmas card provides. And while you’re at it, send a card that speaks to the world’s greatest need, the love and salvation found only through Jesus Christ! INSIDE THE CARD: The real wonder of Christmas is that the answer to our most difficult questions came to us as a child. Jesus is the answer. He is the greatest Love worth finding.