The Gospel and Grief

The Bible is the definitive guide to grief. Unflinchingly honest, the Scriptures tell us about the roots and realities of life in a ruptured world. It provides solace in our suffering and resources to persevere in the face of seemingly unbearable circumstances.

At the heart of divine revelation stands the gospel of God: the good news of a suffering God on a tree, an empty tomb, and an exalted King. It is this message that provides the greatest power and hope amid tragedy.

To begin with, the gospel is about rescuing us from the ravages of sin, death and the evil one. It is our only hope for a renewed world, healed relationships and mended selves.

The cessation of pain is a future reality guaranteed by the work of Christ. He became the man of sorrows to rid us of sorrow. He died to end the reign of death. He suffered to extinguish suffering. For the Christian, grief and pain are a temporary state of affairs. This future hope gives us courage in our pain and grit as we hold to God’s promises.

The gospel that saves us also shows us the nature of God. The person and work of Christ are the clearest display of the character of our Creator. In him, we see compassion embodied. The number one emotion attributed to Jesus in the New Testament is compassion.

The language of compassion repeatedly applied to Christ literally refers to the bowels or inner-parts. It refers to a deep, visceral response to the pain of others. When Christ encountered pain he engaged from his gut with grace, love and grief.

It has been said that compassion is love as it encounters pain. The idea of compassion is to “suffer with” another person. We see this in Jesus. He grieves with those who grieve. He weeps, sighs and aches when encountering hurting humans.

The gospel of Christ displays a God who comes near, enters the fray and suffers with and for us. God is present to us in our pain. Presence may be the single most comforting and important thing we can provide when others are grieving.

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2 comments

  1. I do believe that Jesus was and still is the son of God, the Creator. The idea of a trinity is incorrect. Jesus said that he had made know the Father’s name. What name, you might ask. Psalm 83 gives the answer.

    1. I would encourage you to explore the passages below.

      1. Matthew 3:16

      “After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him.”

      2. Matthew 12:28

      “But if I [Jesus] cast out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.”

      3. Matthew 28:19

      “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit . . .”

      4. Luke 3:22

      “And the Holy Spirit descended upon Him [Jesus] in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, “You are My [the Father’s] beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased.”

      5. John 14:26

      “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My [Jesus’] name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”

      6. John 15:26

      “When the Helper comes, whom I [Jesus] will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me . . .”

      7. Acts 1:4

      “Gathering them together, He [Jesus] commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, “Which,” He said, “you heard of from Me . . .”

      8. Acts 2:33

      “Therefore having been exalted to the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He [Jesus] has poured forth this which you both see and hear.”

      9. Acts 10:38

      “You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.”

      10. Romans 1:4

      “Who was declared the Son of God with power by the resurrection from the dead, according to the Spirit of holiness, Jesus Christ our Lord . . .”

      11. Romans 8:9

      “However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.”

      12. 1 Corinthians 6:11

      “Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.”

      13. 2 Corinthians 13:14

      “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.”

      14. Galatians 4:6

      “Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”

      15. Ephesians 1:17

      “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him.”

      16. Ephesians 2:18

      “For through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father.”

      17. Ephesians 2:22

      “In whom [Jesus] you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit.”

      18. Titus 3:6

      “Whom [the Holy Spirit] He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior.”

      19. Hebrews 9:14

      “How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without blemish to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?”

      20. 1 Peter 1:2

      “According to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: may grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure.”

      See also 1 Cor 12:4–6; Eph 1:13–14; 4:4–6; Jude 20–21.

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