Author: David Wilber
There is perhaps no experience more painful than losing a loved one to death. What does the Bible say about finding comfort and hope in these difficult times?
And Sarah died at Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan, and Abraham went in to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her. (Genesis 23:2)
Abraham’s life consisted of many challenges. His walk of faith began with God calling him to leave behind everything he knew and journey to the land of Canaan. Since then he faced famine, war, conflict, and heart-wrenching tests of faith involving his own son. You would think that someone like Abraham—someone who has been through so much and is regarded in Scripture as a man of tremendous faith—wouldn’t be that affected by death. And yet, the Scriptures say he wept over the death of Sarah. Indeed, it doesn’t matter how strong you are. Losing someone you care about is intensely painful and difficult.
Abraham wasn’t the only man of great faith to be deeply affected by the death of a loved one. Even our Messiah Himself, the King of the universe, was affected emotionally by this experience. The Scriptures record that Yeshua wept over the death of His friend Lazarus:
When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in his spirit and greatly troubled. And he said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus wept. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!” (John 11:33-36)
“Jesus wept.” What a profound statement. These two simple words speak volumes to the character and love of our Messiah. When Yeshua saw the pain of all those affected by the death of Lazarus, He was moved to the point of tears. Interestingly, Yeshua already knew that Lazarus would soon be raised from the dead (John 11:11,41-44). Knowing this, why did He weep? Because in His great love and compassion for us, God took on our sorrow as His own:
Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. (Isaiah 53:4a)
Death is not the end for those who know Yeshua. Like Lazarus, those who have fallen asleep will rise again. There will come a day when God will set everything right and wipe the tears from our eyes. And in that day death will be no more (Revelation 21:4).
In the meantime, you can take comfort in the fact that God understands your pain. In your moment of immense grief and heartache, God is weeping with you. The Bible says God is near to the brokenhearted. If you’ve lost someone you care about, you are not alone. God Himself gave His Own Son to die for us. So as you weep, draw near to God for comfort. And remember that through Yeshua’s resurrection, death is conquered once and for all.
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