Thursday, August 30, 2007

Conversation regarding death...

I had a discussion last week with several people. It began by an innocent comment involving the timing of a person's death. Now, I don't mean to step on anyone's toes at all. That is not my intention. The woman who made the surprising comment is a godly woman who I admire greatly and respect her even more. It had never dawned on me that she held this particular viewpoint. What is it you ask?!

The comment which had been made was, "Well, if our son were to die over in Iraq then I know that he would have died that same moment here at home. The Lord would have just used a different medium to accomplish His desired will." My friend then responded, "Well, God knows when you are going to die but I don't believe He has planned it. Since He knows the beginning from the end He knows when you are going to die."

I asked her if she had any Biblical support to back up her reasoning. She never really shared any, other than she did mention Hezekiah asking the Lord for 15 more years at the time of his near death. Of course, I had intended to use Hezekiah for one of my sources. :) (2 Kings 20:5-6)

I thought for a minute as other people were throwing out questions. Then I shared, "It seems to me that God Who, according to Acts, has "determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live," [Acts 17:26 NIV] would be in control of the times people die. Furthermore, I do believe that in Psalm 139: 16 it states very clearly, "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." I went on and shared that God is so precise to know the number of the hairs on our head (Matthew 10:30) why wouldn't he also determine the day of your death?

The more I thought about it the more convinced I became. After all, God is not a god of confusion. Why would He be so careful about where you live, how many hairs He places on your head but not care about the detail of your death? Finally I thought, "God planned His own Son's birth thousands of years before He was ever born and prophesied when that would be. He also planned His exact hour of death. If God planned His birth and death why wouldn't He plan our births and deaths? Ours just aren't prophesied like Jesus' was."

I guess the above is why I believe that it isn't cancer that kills someone, nor is it a car crash, or war or any other act that is so often associated with death. When a person dies it is their appointment with God. God may have used the car crash, or the cancer or the "whatever" to accomplish His divine will, but He alone is the one who calls us before Him.

That for me, brings such comfort. However, I can understand why some people may not be so comforted with these thoughts. Hebrews 9:27 makes it very clear that it "is appointed to man to die once and then comes judgment..." My friend, if you are one who has not trusted Christ for your future won't you please do it now?

8 comments:

Dave said...

I'm not sure where I am on this but thank you for provoking the brain juices to flow! LOL!

Becky said...

Death is a difficult subject for most people to talk about. Recently I listened to a missionary sharing the stories of people in an African country, whose life expectancy is no more than 40 years. She said that these Christians sing about death with joy, they talk about death and they are ready to die. It is their way of living. Thanks for the good thoughts.

Goldwings said...

I agree with you 100%...when your time in this world is up, there's nothing you can do to prolong it.

I lost my mom very suddenly 1 1/2 years ago. She literally went from being a reasonably healthy person to "gone" in less than a week. It was her time - plain and simple. God had called her Home.

You are quite right...that thought is very comforting.

Just because God granted our family "the peace that passes all understanding" doesn't mean that we miss her any less. It just makes it a lot easier to deal with.

Felisol said...

Dear Pilot Mom,
thank you for being such a dear friend. A friend with whom I can share thoughts, ideas and pain. A friend who is soon to react when needed. I just spoke to Serina and told about you and friends and family in Norway who are praying for her.
It seemed to cheer her up,-
and I also always thought it to be important to let her know that the Almighty is involved.
Now I plan to go to bed. Hope we all can have a good night's sleep. Say hello to Pilot Dad from me, will you?
Hope his appetite is back by now.
Yours Felisol

passing-thru said...

GOOD STUFF

G~ said...

hmm.

first i need to clarify to know if i am "getting" the first comment...

in other words, this person is saying 'we're going to die when God appoints our time, no matter where we are--in a deadly battle zone or lying in our bed at night. when God calls us, then we'll go!'

i don't believe that anything is a surprise to God. He knows it all and Jeremiah says this in

10:23
O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

and how can you NOT believe God has our entire life 'written' in His mind when you read this also in Jeremiah--

29:11
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

expected end. God KNOWS else how could He expect anything???

i have to say, claire, that i don't even "get" her comment.

i mean, it sounds as if she's agreeing with you. ??? maybe i'm missing the emphasis or tone...

her saying [quote]Well, God knows when you are going to die but I don't believe He has planned it.[unquote] is like she is contradicting herself in one sentence.

if He knows *and i am as certain of this as i am of any other thing* when we are going to die, then why in world (for lack of a better expression right now) would she say "but I don't believe He has it planned"? if God has seen us eons before our ancestors were even born, He has known that our eyes would be blue/brown/green and we will have X-number of hairs and will have a tendancy to be headstrong/bashful/reckless/etc... then to say God hasn't planned the exact time He will require our presence before Him, in my very humble but firm opinion, is just silly!

as to the last sentence of her comment [quote]"Since He knos the beginning from the end (?) He knows when you are going to die."[unquote] i assume she's just restating her opinion. ?

here is definition of plan from the MW dictionary :::

====
Main Entry: 2plan
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): planned; plan·ning
Date: 1728
transitive verb
1 : to arrange the parts of : design plan a new layout
2 : to devise or project the realization or achievement of planned their escape
3 : to have in mind : intend plans to leave soon
intransitive verb
1 : to make plans plan ahead
2 : to have a specified intention —used with on plans on going
— plan·ner noun
====

to my mind, as Creator, if God knows then He HAS to have planned our lives. yes, we stil have free will, but God knows all the unwise decisions we will make. AND HE HAS 'PLANNED FOR' THOSE STUPID MISTAKES WE MAKE! God is never surprised.

and i don't **THINK** that's what anyone is saying here, but *shaking head to clear the confusion* i will never understand someone saying they don't believe God has planned our deaths or anything else!!

that's like saying (again i **THINK**) that God has us all planned out except our death. huh?

*sigh* well, it's taken me two days to get this written cuz i kept having to get up and go do something else, so i hope you can at least sorta understand what i'm saying.

and i apologize in advance for the scatteredness of this comment.

God bless!!

Saija said...

scripture has always taught that "our times are in God's hands" ... and i believe wholeheartedly with you, that God knows how, where, when, why and EVERYTHING in between about our departure from this earth ...

and like you, i am more concerned about the heart issues of man ... our bodies are dust - we occupy them for such a miniscule moment in time - our spirit/soul is forever - and where we spend FOREVER, is far more important than how we get to that destination ...

blessings to you ...

LJ Ducharme said...

Another way to phrase the question would be: What does God not know?