Last Words of SaintsAn old hymn says:
Teach me to live that
I may dread; The grave as little as my bed;
Many times the dying words of believers have been
recorded by family members and biographers. These
expressions of faith and trust illustrate the mighty power
of God at a time when human resources have been drained. In
the sixteenth century there was a bloody purge of Christians
in Scotland who died for their faith. Thousands of ministers
and laymen suffered for Christ's sake. Many were hanged on
the gibbet or slaughtered in cold blood. Some of these
believers endured the torture of burning at the stake or
being beheaded. The last words of these heroes and martyrs
prove the truth of Christ's promise He made to His
disciples. He warned them, "I am sending you out as sheep
among wolves.... Yes, and you must stand trial before
governors and kings for my sake. This will give you the
opportunity to tell them about me, yes, to witness to the
world" (Matthew 10:16-18, LB).
As Martin Luther was dying he repeated
We do not know whether we will suffer for the cause of Christ. But throughout the world today there are people who are enduring cruelties and persecution because of their Christian faith. We must pray for them, and for ourselves, so that in our own dying hour God will give us grace to endure until the end, anticipating the certainty of His glory to come.
Our Patient Merciful God
The Bible and the Gospel speak of God's great mercy for us ...
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“Enter his gates with
thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him
and praise his name.