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The great Charles Spurgeon told a story that demonstrated a person’s concern for an unsaved family member. A rather young girl in Spurgeon’s congregation who had a terminal illness approached her pastor one day with thoughts about her upcoming funeral. She spoke of her father, who was an unbeliever and who had never accepted an invitation from her to go to church with her.

"Pastor, you will bury me, won’t you?" she asked. "My father will have to come to my funeral and hear you speak, and you will speak the gospel. Please speak it clearly. I have prayed for him a long time. I know God will save him."

According to Spurgeon, the father came to her funeral and was indeed converted. The girl did not die in her father’s place. Of course, she could not because Jesus is the only one who has died to save sinners. But she had a heart of sorrow and love for the lost in that she was willing to die if her death might cause the conversion of one close to her whom she loved very much.

(From a sermon by Freddy Fritz, "Responding to Rejection of the Gospel")

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