This is the recent funeral tribute for a Christian man who died suddenly of a massive heart attack.
+ + +
In the Name of The FATHER,
And of The SON+,
and of The HOLY SPIRIT.
+ + +
Greetings of love to each of you in the Life-giving Name of Our LORD JESUS CHRIST… the same yesterday, today, and forever… Who+ ever liveth to make intercession for us.
My relationship with Uncle Karl goes back about 69 years. He was staying with my family before I was born. Thus, our hearts were knit together for the rest of our lives.
During his youth, Uncle Karl would share things with me and I , with him. I would always give him bites of my popsicles… until my good aunts would chase him away!
He would call me to help him … yes, to help him skin all those rabbits he was so fond of shooting. “Here, hold these legs… now hold them TIGHT! ” he would insist. I would , but OH, how they stunk !
Through his young adult years, Uncle Karl had many hard knocks. He had some harsh experiences that left him broken-hearted and hurt.
Now Uncle Karl was a hard-worker all of his life. He lived with my family while he worked in our town on the railroad, away from his family. Uncle Karl did not have a lazy bone in his body.
Uncle Karl possessed another character trait.
That was HONESTY.
He was not a cheat.
And, he did not lie.
Uncle Karl carried his responsibility and commitments. He took care of what was entrusted to him from his own labors. But still, the hard knocks came.
One day, through his middle years, he looked into the mirror… the MIRROR of GOD’S Word. It stopped him cold. Because of his deep inner honesty, he saw himself as he REALLY was.
He saw that his own CHOICES produced the hard knocks. He could not blame GOD for them.
” I, I am wrong.
YOU+ are right.”
Uncle Karl said,
” I am the sinner.
have not mistreated me,
but I have
mistreated YOU+ . ”
And he bent the knees of his heart and heartily repented… ashamed of choosing sin… and very hurt at himself; Uncle Karl repented.
He pledged allegiance to JESUS CHRIST from that moment on. NOT to a LIST of Laws, but to The LORD JESUS CHRIST went his allegiance.
He yielded the CONTROL of his life unto the Savior+ of his soul.
Uncle Karl rose up from his knees and entered the cleansing waters of baptism. He was immersed and his soul was cleansed of sin.
And when he emerged from that sanctified water, The LORD did something to him:
HE+ made Uncle Karl
A New Creature in CHRIST!
MARVELOUS! MARVELOUS GIFT!
Now, how do we KNOW Uncle Karl became that New Creature in CHRIST?
Well, that was easy: we ALL KNEW that JESUS changed him !
First, he put away the booze bottles. He would not have that devil water in his house. He hated even the smell of it… because it had helped to ruin his life.
It is hard to ask the LORD’S blessing before you drink your beer, isn’t it ?
Then, he stopped gambling and throwing his money away on fine race horses. He stopped going to the race track.
” I+ don’t go there;
don’t you go there,
THAT is what a New Creature in CHRIST does.
Uncle Karl kept a clean heart and a clean house. He cleaned up his language… and kept it clean. He had no filthy magazines under his bed.
He forgave those who hurt him or ignored him or turned a cold shoulder to him. And he kept on forgiving unto his dying day.
Uncle Karl kept a reading rack in his bathroom. It had a Bible in it. A daily reading Bible, with portions for each day for a year. He read through it several times.
That is what a New Creature in CHRIST does !
He set his priority to keep his commitment to The LORD JESUS with at least as much diligence as he gave to his worldly jobs… and THAT was quite a lot.
Uncle Karl asked the LORD’S blessing over his food at home, and in public restaurants. He would NOT DENY CHRIST before men.
Uncle Karl developed a deep companionship with JESUS by doing these things.
As a result of his companionship with CHRIST JESUS, Uncle Karl grew tender-hearted toward those in need. He opened up his heart… and his pocketbook followed… to the hurting and hungry and handicapped.
He didn’t blow a trumpet before him, so we are just finding out now some of the things he did.
We discovered that he found a way to help the American Indians, a down-trodden people, the under-dogs… because he had been an under-dog for so many years himself and he never forgot the pain of it.
” This is what GOD
wants me to do. “
A Companionship with CHRIST is what he prayed for his family and friends and acquaintances he met in passing.
I hate to say good-bye to such a man as this: an elder in CHRIST, an excellent example.
So now, we have this confidence: because Uncle Karl was a New Creature in CHRIST, the LORD received him into His+ Heaven.
Yes, Uncle Karl IS absent now from the body, but NOW he is present with The LORD.
However, Uncle Karl will not ALWAYS be absent from the body. He is not in these ashes. He is alive in soul and spirit… the Uncle Karl we know … and in Heaven.
These ashes sitting here in this urn are going to be changed ! Uncle Karl will be restored — complete, whole, healthy, and happy — in his body, AT THE LAST TRUMPET!
In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye,
at the last trump:
for the trumpet shall sound,
and the dead shall be raised…
the DEAD shall
And those who follow JESUS in a daily, honest, and responsible companionship shall be raised from their graves too… with bodies glorified like unto our LORD’S glorified body, according to the working whereby, CHRIST JESUS is able to subdue all things unto HIMSELF+.
So… we say good-bye … just temporarily … to this dear man, as his spirit and soul enters into that Continuing City, whose Builder and Maker is GOD.
Uncle Karl cannot come to us … but we can go to him. I KNOW he wants to see you there, too.
In the Name of GOD the FATHER,
WHO created us —
and unto Whom we must give an account;
And in the Name of His Beloved SON+,
Who+ knows every little thing about us
… and still loves us…. enough to save us;
And in the Name of that Blessed HOLY SPIRIT Who+ sanctifies us by the BLOOD of JESUS CHRIST.
+ + +