The Bible Answers to Grieving

Isaiah 53:4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. 5 But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Lamentations 1:12 [Is it] nothing to you, all ye that pass by? behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow, which is done unto me, wherewith the LORD hath afflicted [me] in the day of his fierce anger.

Are you grieving? Do you experience a sense of abject depravity of comfort and consolation? When does this happen? In death, divorce and separation. Someone, some object, some internal idea or ideal life motive is shattered. Your life support that which has made your life worth living is gone. Read of some experience and examples:

David

2 Samuel 1:17 And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his son:

2 Samuel 1:23 Saul and Jonathan [were] lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions. 24 Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with [other] delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel. 25 How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! O Jonathan, [thou wast] slain in thine high places. 26 I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women. 27 How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perished!

Elijah

1 Kings 19:4 But he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a juniper tree: and he requested for himself that he might die; and said, It is enough; now, O LORD, take away my life; for I [am] not better than my fathers.

Disciples

Luke 24:21 But we trusted that it had been he which should have redeemed Israel: and beside all this, to day is the third day since these things were done.

The Lord to Be Your Comfort – On the Death of a Husband.

Dear Sister, A letter has just been placed in my hands from Sister G, giving an account of your bereavement. I deeply sympathize with you, my sister. If I were where I could visit you I would do so. I will say to you, my sister, the Lord would not have you grieve in sadness. Your husband has been spared to you many years longer than I supposed he would be. God has mercifully spared him, and mercifully, after much suffering, has let him rest in Jesus…. Your husband and my husband are at rest. They have no more pain, no more suffering. They are at rest. I am sorry, my sister, that you are in affliction and sorrow. But Jesus, the precious Saviour, lives. He lives for you. He wants you to be comforted in His love. Do not worry; trust in the Lord. Remember that not a sparrow falls to the ground without the notice of your heavenly Father. Be comforted, my sister, in the Lord. “Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us arm yourselves likewise with the same mind” (1 Peter 4:1). I urge you in your suffering to stay your soul upon God. The Lord will be your help, your strength, your comfort. Then look to Him and trust in Him. We must receive our consolation from Christ. Learn in His school His meekness and lowliness of heart. Let every word you speak show that you recognize the goodness, the mercy, and the love of God. Be determined to be a comfort and a blessing to all in the home. Create a sweet, pure, heavenly atmosphere. Open the windows of the soul heavenward, and let the light of the Sun of Righteousness in. Do not complain. Do not mourn and weep. Do not look on the dark side. Let the peace of God reign in your soul. Then you will have strength to bear all your sufferings, and you will rejoice that you have grace to endure. Praise the Lord; talk of His goodness; tell of His power. Sweeten the atmosphere which surrounds your soul. Do not dishonor God by words of repining, but praise Him with heart and soul and voice. Look on the bright side of everything. Do not bring a cloud or shadow into your home. Praise Him who is the light of your countenance and your God. Do this, and see how smoothly everything will go. {2SM 266.7}

A Supreme Example

Matthew 26:37 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. 38 Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me.

Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Matthew 27:50 Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.

This is your hour, and the power of darkness. Luke 22:53. {AG 169.1}

As the Son of God bowed in the attitude of prayer in the Garden of Gethsemane, the agony of His spirit forced from His pores sweat like great drops of blood. It was here that the horror of great darkness surrounded Him. The sins of the world were upon Him. He was suffering in man’s stead as a transgressor of His Father’s law. Here was the scene of temptation. The divine light of God was receding from His vision, and He was passing into the hands of the powers of darkness. In His soul anguish He lay prostrate on the cold earth. He was realizing His Father’s frown. He had taken the cup of suffering from the lips of guilty man, and proposed to drink it Himself, and in its place give to man the cup of blessing. The wrath that would have fallen upon man was now falling upon Christ. It was here that the mysterious cup trembled in His hand. {AG 169.2}

Jesus had often resorted to Gethsemane with His disciples for meditation and prayer. . . . Never before had the Saviour visited the spot with a heart so full of sorrow. It was not bodily suffering from which the Son of God shrank. . . The sins of a lost world were upon Him and overwhelming Him. It was a sense of His Father’s frown, in consequence of sin, which rent His heart with such piercing agony and forced from His brow great drops of blood. . . . {AG 169.3}

We can have but faint conceptions of the inexpressible anguish of God’s dear Son in Gethsemane, as He realized His separation from His Father in consequence of bearing man’s sin. He became sin for the fallen race. The sense of the withdrawal of His Father’s love pressed from His anguished soul these mournful words: “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death” (Matthew 26:38). . . . {AG 169.4}

The divine Son of God was fainting, dying. The Father sent a messenger from His presence to strengthen the divine Sufferer and brace Him to tread the bloodstained path. Could mortals have viewed the amazement and the sorrow of the angelic host as they watched in silent grief the Father separating His beams of light, love, and glory from the beloved Son of His bosom, they would better understand how offensive sin is in His sight. {AG 169.5}

All this is expressed in Jeremiah:

Jeremiah 15:18 Why is my pain perpetual, and my wound incurable, [which] refuseth to be healed? wilt thou be altogether unto me as a liar, [and as] waters [that] fail?

What is the remedy for grieving this shattering loss of everything that has made life worth living?

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

Jesus answers:

Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, 2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly.

We are admonished to look to Jesus for the relief of abject internal loss.

We need never feel that we are alone. Angels are our companions. The Comforter that Christ promised to send in His name abides with us. In the way that leads to the City of God there are no difficulties which those who trust in Him may not overcome. There are no dangers which they may not escape. There is not a sorrow, not a grievance, not a human weakness, for which He has not provided a remedy. {MH 249.1}

There we receive a mind exercise that eclipse grief of loss.

The Lord will work for all who put their trust in Him. Precious victories will be gained by the faithful. Precious lessons will be learned. Precious experiences will be realized. {MB 11.1}

Our heavenly Father is never unmindful of those whom sorrow has touched. When David went up the Mount Olivet, “and wept as he went up, and had his head covered, and he went barefoot” (2 Samuel 15:30), the Lord was looking pityingly upon him. David was clothed in sackcloth, and his conscience was scourging him. The outward signs of humiliation testified of his contrition. In tearful, heartbroken utterances he presented his case to God, and the Lord did not forsake His servant. Never was David dearer to the heart of Infinite Love than when, conscience-smitten, he fled for his life from his enemies, who had been stirred to rebellion by his own son. The Lord says, “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.” Revelation 3:19. Christ lifts up the contrite heart and refines the mourning soul until it becomes His abode. {MB 11.2}

But when tribulation comes upon us, how many of us are like Jacob! We think it the hand of an enemy; and in the darkness we wrestle blindly until our strength is spent, and we find no comfort or deliverance. To Jacob the divine touch at break of day revealed the One with whom he had been contending–the Angel of the covenant; and, weeping and helpless, he fell upon the breast of Infinite Love, to receive the blessing for which his soul longed. We also need to learn that trials mean benefit, and not to despise the chastening of the Lord nor faint when we are rebuked of Him. {MB 11.3}

“Happy is the man whom God correcteth: . . . He maketh sore, and bindeth up: He woundeth, and His hands make whole. He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee.” Job 5:17-19. To every stricken one, Jesus comes with the ministry of healing. The life of bereavement, pain, and suffering may be brightened by precious revealings of His presence. {MB 12.1}

Follow Jesus ye who carry this state of oppression:

It was through suffering that Jesus obtained the ministry of consolation. In all the affliction of humanity He is afflicted; and “in that He Himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succor them that are tempted.” Isaiah 63:9; Hebrews 2:18. In this ministry every soul that has entered into the fellowship of His sufferings is privileged to share. “As the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ.” 2 Corinthians 1:5. The Lord has special grace for the mourner, and its power is to melt hearts, to win souls. His love opens a channel into the wounded and bruised soul, and becomes a healing balsam to those who sorrow. “The Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort . . . comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3,4. {MB 13.1}

None need abandon themselves to discouragement and despair.

Let us learn a lesson of courage and fortitude from the last interview of Christ with His apostles. They were about to be separated. Our Saviour was entering the bloodstained path which would lead Him to Calvary. Never was scene more trying than that through which He was soon to pass. The apostles had heard the words of Christ foretelling His sufferings and death, and their hearts were heavy with sorrow, their minds distracted with doubt and fear. Yet there were no loud outcries; there was no abandonment of grief. Those last solemn, momentous hours were spent by our Saviour in speaking words of comfort and assurance to His disciples, and then all united in a hymn of praise. . . . {2SM 268.1}

Jesus is worth living for. He will never be abandon you. You will never need to succumb to grief and remain and be in a state of grieving.

I address you and your children. I sympathize with you in your bereavement at this time. If I were with you, I could speak words of comfort to you, but as I am not, I can only trace a few lines, and let you know that I do not forget you in your affliction. . . . {TDG 34.2}

We are in the evening of this earth’s history, and we may lay away our dead, knowing that they are hid for a little moment until the indignation be overpast. We need not mourn for them as those who have ho hope; for their life is hid with Christ in God. We have every reason to rejoice. . . . {TDG 34.3}

The difficulties which those who put on Christ and keep His commandments must undergo, are not of Christ’s designing. “If any man will come after me,” He says, “let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me” (Matthew 16:24). The duty of intelligent souls is to hold to the truth, to practice virtue. We are born with a disinclination to both. It is sad to find in one’s own constitution an opposition to virtues that are commendable in the sight of God, as submission, charity, sweetness of spirit, and patience that will not be provoked. Say to yourselves, dear children, I am weakness, but God is my strength. He has given me my post of duty. The General whom I serve bids me be an overcomer. . . . {TDG 34.4}

Let the affliction that has come to your family circle be a blessing to you all. Our dear sister, your mother, loved Jesus. Her warfare is ended. You are to remember that she rests in hope. “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him” (Colossians 3:4). Let the peace and comfort of the Holy Spirit come into your hearts. Open the door of your hearts, that Jesus may enter as an honored guest, and you will have a Comforter. “This is my commandment, That ye love one another” (John 15:12). Let the hearts of the living draw close to one another. Let each try to be a blessing to the other, and not a hindrance. . . . {TDG 34.5}

Let us prepare for the coming of the Son of man. Let us be true to God, and we shall receive the crown of life.–Letter 10, Jan. 26, 1898, to Brother Hare. {TDG 34.6}

Amen.

Posted on October 28, 2012, in Short Studies. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

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