Most Blessed Forever
‘Thou hast made him most blessed for ever, Thou hast made him exceeding glad with Thy countenance.’—Ps. xxi. 6.
PROBABLY every one who reads this has at least one of those golden links to heaven which God’s own hand has forged from our earthly treasures. It may be that the very nearest and dearest that had been given are now taken away. And how often ‘no relation, only a dear friend’ is an * only’ of heart-crushing emphasis!
Human comfort goes for very little in this; but let us lay our hearts open to the comfort wherewith we are comforted of God1 Himself about it.
There is not much directly to ourselves; He knew that the truest and sweetest comfort would come by looking not at our loss, but at their gain.
Whatever this gain is, it is all His own actual and immediate doing. ‘Thou hast made him’ (read here the name of the very one for whom we are mourning) ‘most blessed.’
1 2 Cor. i. 4.
‘Most!’ How shall we reach that thought? Make a shining stairway of every bright beatitude in the Bible, blessed upon blessed, within and also far beyond our own experience. And when we have built them up till they reach unto heaven, still this ‘ most blessed’ is beyond, out of our sight, in the unapproachable glory of God Himself. It will always be ‘most,’ for it is ‘forever’—everlasting light without a shadow, everlasting songs without a minor.
No more death, neither sorrow nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain.1 ‘And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick.’2 No more sunsets, no more days of mourning. The troubling of the wicked and the voice of the oppressor ceased for ever.3 No more memory of troubles; no more tears. No more anything that defileth! All this only the negative side of our dear one’s present blessedness.
Then, the rest for the weary one, the keeping of the sabbath that remaineth, and yet the service free and perfect and perpetual. The crowns of life, of righteousness, and of glory. The great reward in heaven, full of love-surprise to the consciously unprofitable servant. The far more exceeding weight of glory4 borne by some to whom the grasshopper had been a burden.5
The scene of all the blessedness,—the better country, the continuing city, the King’s palace, the Father’s house, the prepared mansions (perhaps full of contrasts to the past pilgrimage)—all summed up in the transcendent simplicity and sublimity of His words, ‘That where I am, there ye may be also.’
1 Rev. xxi. 4. 2Isa. xxxiii. 24. 8Job Hi. 17, 18.
* 2 Cor. iv. 17. * Eccles. xii. 5.
The music ! What will all the harps of heaven be to the thrill of the One Voice, saying, ‘Come, ye blessed of my Father!” and, ‘ Well done, good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.’2 Our dear ones have heard that! and that one word of the King must have made them most blessed for ever.
But more yet. ‘Thou hast made him exceeding glad with thy countenance.’ ‘Hast,’ for it is done. At this moment they are exceeding glad, and the certainty of it stills every quiver of our selfish love. The glory and joy of our Lord Christ are revealed to them, and they are ‘ glad also with exceeding joy,” rejoicing together with Jesus.
How can they help reflecting His Divine joy when they see it no longer by faith and afar off, but visibly, actually ‘ face to face ! ‘* nay, more, ‘eye to eye,’ that very closest approach of tenderest intercourse too deep for words. They see Him ‘as He is;’ in all His beauty and love and glory; through no veil, no glass, no tear-mist.
The prayer for them, ‘The Lord lift up His countenance upon thee,” is altogether fulfilled, and they are ‘ full of joy with Thy countenance.’ And every other prayer we ever prayed for them is fulfilled exceeding abundantly, above all we asked or thought. We may not pray any more for them, because God has not left one possibility of blessedness unbestowed.
‘Breaking the narrow prayers that may
Befit your narrow hearts, away
In His broad, loving will.’
—E. B. Browning.
1 Matt. xxv. 34. 2 Matt. xxv. 21, 23. * Luke xv. 6.
* 1 Cor. xiii. 12. 6 Num. vi. 26.
God Himself, their exceeding joy, has done and is doing His very best for them. ‘Even so, Father!”
For I know
That they who are not lost, but gone before,
Are only waiting till I come; for death
Has only parted us a little while,
And has not severed e’en the finest strand
In the eternal cable of our love:
The very strain has twined it closer still,
And added strength. The music of their lives
Is nowise stilled, but blended so with songs
Around the throne of God, that our poor ears
No longer hear it.