Summary: An All Saints Day sermon for believers to remind us there is life after death, and to help us see how we can celebrate ALL SAINTS DAY
What scares us about death?
Is it worrying that we will miss the person,
the good things about the person!
Perhaps we realise we haven’t told them something special,
or there is something we need to tell them,
like I love you, I forgive you, you are great, I am sorry!!
If that is the case then why not tell them now!!!
For many people death seems so finite.
It is the end!!
And yet God has message for you about death!
Listen to God speaking to us through St Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, chapter 15 verse 54 to 57.
When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
God says to us clearly, “I have won the victory over death!!”
So even though we may experience death on earth, here is still a future.
So probably a better way to look at death is that it is a setback, not the conclusion.
After death there is something more to come!!
Listen again to some words from John who God inspired to write the book of Revelation.
From Revelation chapter 21.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea
He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.
Even when death occurs Jesus can still do something.
Death does not restrict Jesus from working, even from using the life of a person to transform others.
I can recall following one funeral, being asked by one of the peope at the funeral to help them get to know Jesus better, because of what they heard at that funeral.
In today’s Gospel reading
For Mary and Martha it all seemed hopeless.
They felt there was no hope for Lazarus.
Listen to Martha in verse 39.
“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”
Ever felt like Martha in your life.
Ever felt there is no hope!!!
That nothing can happen!!
Each of us face many situations where it looks like there is no hope.
I invite you for a moment reflect on some of those situations in your life.
Now today’s Gospel reading encourages us when faced with such situations
To allow Jesus to do miracles, in his way, in his time.
To allow Jesus to create something better from such situations.
For many people nothing could be more final than death.
For many when death occurs, it appears nothing else can occur.
However for a Christian, the Good News is that death is not the end.
Death is merely the stepping stone into eternity.
Jesus made it possible for us to go through death.
To treat death as an interval in our life.
This year some of us have seen loved ones die.
Some of these people God has used
to introduce us to the Christian faith,
to help us explore the Christian faith,
to nurture us in the Christian faith,
and to encourage us in the Christian faith.
On this All saints day, there are two things I would like you to think about in relation to these people.
First thank God that He placed them in your life.
Thank God how they took the time to live and share the faith with others.
Secondly remember you will meet up with them again in heaven. Hold onto the fact that as Christians you will join together in heaven.
Now before I conclude listen to this little story, and think about how it may relate to our Christian life and our relationship with God.
One day a boy’s cat was run over by a car.
His mother quickly disposed of the remains before her four-year-old son Billy found out about it.
After a few days, though, Billy finally asked about the cat.
“Billy, the cat died,” his mother explained. “But it’s all right. He’s up in heaven with God.”
The boy asked, “What in the world would God want with a dead cat?”