by Frans Bakker
Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried. —Ruth 1:17
Where do you want to be buried? Joseph did not want to be buried in the land of his birth. He wanted to be buried where God dwelt among Hs people. He wanted to belong to those who are saved and those who are with God. Do you want to be buried where God dwells among His people? And where will you be missed when you are buried? Will they miss you in the world? Or will they miss you in God’s church? The answer to that question all depends on how you now live.
Ruth also understood this and confessed to Naomi, “Thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried.” Ruth loved Naomi, but above all she desired to belong to the people of God and she wanted to be buried with the people of God. That is the desire of all God’s people. When you are buried, for what will your remains be waiting? Will it be for the day of the glorious resurrection or for the day of everlasting dismay?
People of God, you can be so occupied with receiving grace to die. On the one hand, you can never be occupied too much with this. For when death comes, you will experience the truth that due to your works, God is not indebted to you at all. It is, therefore, necessary to be occupied with your death. But to do that, you need to be occupied with your life. You need grace to live.
You need to seek a life that cleaves to the Lord. You would like to receive so much in life. You would like to experience and possess various things. But really, you only need one thing in life and that is to know God. You need God in your life. When God comes into your life, then you realize this is abundant life. In addition, you gain eternal life that can never die. Then, when you die, you will not meet someone who is strange to you. You will already be acquainted with Him because of the eternal life He has already given you. Eternal life starts here in this life.
Sadly, there is such a neglect of this close walk with the Lord. Let us realize that God is willing to give so much grace to live that there will even be a desire to depart and to be with Christ. For you learn not to desire the heaven of God but the God of heaven. You desire communion with God, you need His nearness for your soul. That is what all God’s people shall experience. They will die and be buried, but still: “I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the LORD” (Ps. 118:17).
From The Everlasting Word by Frans Bakker, compiled and translated by Gerald R. Procee. Reformation Heritage Books and Free Reformed Publications, 2007. Used by permission. For further information, click here.