We are saddened at the death of another person, whether it is a friend or a relative we do not rejoice that a person has died. We grieve with those who are grieving, we enjoyed the companionship of the one who has died. And we will miss that person. We will no longer be able to have a conversation or have the companionship of that person attending an event; we will not be able to do anything good for that person anymore.

We feel the loss. If we are affected by the loss of a loved one or a friend, how much more is God affected by the death of any person. In Ezekiel 18:32 God says He has no pleasure in the death of anyone so people should turn and live.

The message is addressed to the people of God who were having difficulty accepting what God was doing in their life. They were living in the Babylonian exile because they had turned away from God. They accused God of not being fair, but He pointed out to them that if the righteous person turned away from his righteousness and sinned, he would die.

And if a wicked person would turn away from his wickedness and do what is right, he would live. God is fair. God is consistent judging people on the basis of their actions and then He added He has no pleasure in the death of anyone and that everyone should repent and turn back to God.

Keep in mind that God is the creator of all people. He has given life to everybody. Since He is the ever-living God, He does not create life so that it might die. And why did Jesus Christ die? Every believer in Jesus has the hope of eternal life not death. God gave His only begotten Son to die so that every person can have the opportunity to live forever.

God does not look forward to the death of the person so that He can condemn that person to eternal death in hell. God loves all people and wants them to live with Him forever.

That is why He urges people to repent and return to Him, to admit that what they have done is wrong and then what God has done is just and right. We are where we are in the condition in which we find ourselves by the will and the action of God. If we are not happy with the condition in which we find ourselves, we need to take a breath and reflect on what we have done so that we ended up where we are.

If our past behavior was not in agreement with God’s will, we need to admit it, and with confidence in the love of God return to Him. He rejoices over every person who repents. Read again Luke 15, fold your hands, and pray Our Father.

Elmer Schiefer
Pastor. Family of Christ Lutheran Church