Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins


The pains of death surrounded me, And the pangs of Sheol laid hold of me; I found trouble and sorrow. (Psalms 116:3 NKJV)

Life is full of Sorrow!
Recently I received news of a young married mother who had died from cancer.  She and her family were close friends in my younger years. That family is filled with sorrow as they grieve their loss.  My closest friend recently died from cancer.  One of the elders in our church died from cancer a few years back and shortly after his widow remarried, she died from cancer.  Today, there are people who got up healthy this morning who will die today.  Many of them will die from accidents or war and many of them will die unexpectedly.   They will leave behind family and friends who will be filled with sorrow.  Sorrow or grief is going to affect all of us at some time in our lives. 

Why is there Sorrow?
Adam and Eve lived in paradise.  They had it made, but they were told that there was just one thing that they could not do.  They were not supposed to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that was in the garden.  They had only one command, but they disobeyed.  Because of that they lost their place in the garden.  Eve was told that she would bear her children in sorrow.  Adam was told that that the ground was cursed because of his disobedience.  He was told that he would eat of it in sorrow (or the newer translations say trouble).  All they had to do was obey one command, but they were convinced by the serpent that they were being cheated by God when they couldn’t eat of that tree. 

Adam’s nature has become the nature of all of us who are born into this world. Tell a two-year-old not to touch the hot stove and they will most likely touch it to see for themselves if it is really hot.  They will likely only touch it once.  Tell a teenager not to smoke and they will have to try it.  The same is true of all of us.  If we are told not to do something, we rebel at the idea of not being able to make our own decisions; and to prove our independence, we generally do what we shouldn’t do.  Often the result is trouble and sorrow. 

One Command
The Bible has really given us one command.  That command is to believe on or trust in the Lord Jesus Christ. We need to do that because we have all been found guilty of sin.  In John 3:18 we read, “He that believeth on him (that is the Lord Jesus) is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”  Now I know that unbelievers think the Bible is full of rules and they do not want to submit to those rules.  But really there is only one rule that if broken brings heartache for all eternity.

The Cost of our Command
Adam was a man of sorrows.  But so was the Lord.  Isaiah says prophetically in chapter 53:3-5, “He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.  Surely, he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

The Lord became a man of sorrows in order to bear the consequences of our sin which includes sorrow, trouble and grief.  I am glad that there is a day coming for those who have obeyed that one command to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ,  when “God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away (Revelation 21:4).”

What Makes Sorrow Bearable?
The Lord says in John 14:1, “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.”  The Lord is the solution for a troubled heart.  Many people believe in a God, but to be prepared for the sorrows of life and to be prepared for a home in heaven one must “believe also in me.”

My friends who have died left clear testimony that they had “believed also in me.”  While we grieve and have sorrow here because they are gone, we would not wish them back from the bliss they are now enjoying.  However, what will it be for those who lose loved ones who have not believed on the Lord Jesus?  What must their grief be like?  I don’t even want to think about it.

Bruce Collins

Meditation for the week of January 19, 2020

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