How should a person deal with the loss of a friend or family member who didn’t believe in Jesus?

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How should a person deal with the loss of a friend or family member who didn’t believe in Jesus?

Post by Admin on Tue Jan 26, 2016 1:12 am

That is something genuinely to be mourned, because it means three things: (1) God in His own way displayed Himself to them (radio, TV, witnesses of others, etc.), (2) they refused His offer of salvation, which means (3) an eternity of separation from the presence of fellowship of God in hell. From our standpoint, we need to rest in the assurance of God’s love for everyone; Christ Himself makes that clear: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him—John 3:16-17. We see that passion beautifully portrayed by Christ as recorded by Matthew—within a very short time of His being worshiped and celebrated in His “triumphal entry” into Jerusalem (an event we call “Palm Sunday”). He was sorrowing over Jerusalem, and said: O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing—Jesus Christ, Matthew 23:37. Christ consistently showed this passion throughout His ministry; Matthew records an earlier moment when Jesus saw multitudes of people coming toward Him. Matthew wrote, When he [Jesus] saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd—Matthew 9:36. But despite His passion and desire for relationship, He does not sovereignly overrule our choices. He stands and the door and knocks; He doesn’t kick the door down (Jesus Christ, Revelation 3:20). He has the power, but that wouldn’t be love. What we do not know is what was spiritually going on in that person’s final mortal moments. We know that God is a God of grace and mercy who displayed His passion for us in the life and death of His own Son on our behalf. And we know that, as much as the Bible teaches that Jesus is the only way to heaven, rejecting Him is the only way one ends up in hell; again, as Jesus said: Whoever believes in him [the Son] is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son—Jesus Christ, John 3:18, a point underscored by John the Baptist, who said: Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him”—John the Baptist, John 3:36. Ultimately, we need to leave that person’s death in God’s hands, knowing that God is perfect in His love, but also perfect in His judgments. It should also drive us to do everything we can to impact the life of the nonbeliever, whoever they are, especially praying without ceasing for their salvation, always being ready to provide answers for their questions and, most of all, reflecting the love of Jesus in seeing them as God sees them, and treating them accordingly.

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