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Mourning for Those Departed (Genesis 23:1-2)

Introductory Thoughts

When a loved one passes away, mourning serves as an important part of the healing process. However, believers should never sorrow in the same fashion as the world (1 Thessalonians 4:13), yet mourning is acceptable and proper when grieving the death of someone. In Bible times, people seemed to take mourning very seriously. In fact, the initial mourning period at times was quite lengthy (Genesis 50:3; Numbers 20:29; Deuteronomy 34:8). There were even people whose purpose it was to assist in the mourning of those departed (Jeremiah 9:17). Grieving is a natural part of man’s process in dealing with the loss of loved ones. Failure to give time to properly mourn often prolongs the process and hinders the individual from dealing with the loss.

Devotional Thoughts

  • (For children): Mary and Martha were very sad. Their brother Lazarus had died. Friends came to comfort them. Jesus also came. Even though He knew He would raise Lazarus from the dead, He wept with them. He felt their sorrow. It is okay to cry when someone dies (John 11:19, 31-36).
  • (For everyone): Have you ever lost a loved one to death? How did you handle the loss? Did you take time to mourn? If not, did you find that the pain of the loss lingered over a longer period?
  • Why is it crucial that we take the appropriate amount of time to mourn the loss of our loved ones? How can God help us during the time of mourning?

Prayer Thoughts

  • Ask God to help you see the importance of dealing with death.
  • Thank God for the help He gives us in times of mourning.