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Saturday, September 23rd, 2023
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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John Gossner's Treasury
Devotional: September 23rd

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For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto him. Luke 20:38. Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labors; and their works do follow them Revelation 14:13.

Thus speak the Scriptures to us in regard to those who are dead. What better consolation could they give us? We do not, perhaps, in reality weep for the dead who live in the Lord, but for ourselves who are left in this life of death. For it would be foolish for you who still must bear the burden and the heat of the day to weep for him who has finished his day’s work and who rests from his labors and is at home with the Lord, where no heat shall fall upon him, where no sun shall strike him, where every tear has been wiped away for ever. It is not right to call them ’’dead. " They live; but we are still in this body of death. They live unto their God, and their God now lives wholly in them. For He is a God of the living who can and will preserve living forever those whom He takes to Himself. The thought of the departed ones who live with the Lord, ought consequently not kill you nor strike you to the ground; it ought to revive you and to raise you up. It ought not to bow you down into the grave to the decaying tabernacle of the departed one, but it ought to lift you above the grave and decay, to the land of immortality, to the bosom of the Savior, to the "mansions" of the Father, where they rest, live and are glorious, whence they beckon us and invite us to come where they are, encouraging us to remain faithful to the end, that we may join them and enjoy a like glory with them.

It is not death to close

The eye long dimmed with tears.

And wake in glorious repose

To spend eternal years.

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