Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Alarming and Anxious Thoughts About Death

A selection from a letter by the Welsh preacher, Thomas Charles, to Sally Jones, who would later become his wife. Many letters were exchanged between them that increased their understanding of one another and led to a deeper love, though he loved her long before she loved him. She had confided in him in a previous letter how alarming death was. He responded with Biblical counsel and a personal testimony. The letter was written March 1, 1780.

I feelingly sympathize with you when you inform me that the thoughts of death are alarming to you. It was the case with me for many sorrowful years. But, through the abundant goodness of my Heavenly Father, it is not generally the case with me at present. That Scripture, 1 Cor. 15:25, 26, was very remarkably blessed to me for the removing of all the very alarming and anxious thoughts about death which till then deprived me of lasting comfort. Death is considered there not so much our enemy as Christ’s, and he must reign till he hath put all enemies under his feet; and though death will be the last enemy, yet death must be destroyed.

I saw I had nothing to do but enjoy the victory, Christ is engaged to conquer. The victory is obtained by the arm of omnipotence, and we shall, ere long, bear the palm in our hands as a token of it. Till that happy time arrives may it be our constant care and study to live in the fear and to the glory of him who hath thus loved us, and vanquished our strong enemies for us.

The Christian Lover: The Sweetness of Love and Marriage in the Letters of Believers, by Michael A. G. Haykin with Victoria J. Haykin, Reformation Trust Publishing, a division of Ligonier ministries, 2009, p. 52.

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