Abraham and Sarah had came to the land of Canaan about sixty two years previous. For twenty five of those years they had waited for the promised son, Isaac. They had been through much together.
Almost from the first day they arrived in the land a severe drought had struck the land, famine had set in, and they went to Egypt leaving the place of promise which had been given them by God [YHWH]. In Egypt they would have probably “picked up” Hagar, and Egyptian slave girl. The sovereign hand of God is seen in every element of the decisions which they made together. The LORD of all has a way of teaching us dependency upon Him.
For sixty plus years they had walked together, suffered doubts and fears together, believed together, grew together, and now with Sarah being one hundred and twenty seven years of age, her aged body dies.
We must remember; death is not a friend; it is the fruit of sin, or its wages as Paul says in Romans 6:23. Death is the enemy of mankind. God [YHWH] created us for eternity. He created us with an eternal soul that yearns for Him. It is a longing that far too many fight and struggle against by denying the existence of God. Denying the existence of God is almost like denying yourself. You exist, and since you exist means that you had a designer, builder, Creator, and His name is Jehovah [YHWH].
“And Sarah was an hundred and seven and twenty years old: these were the years of the life of Sarah. And Sarah died in Kirjatharba; the same is Hebron in the land of Canaan: and Abraham came to mourn for Sarah, and to weep for her.” Genesis 23:1-2 (KJV)
One of the things which Genesis is clear about is our life and death. It begins with creation and a garden, and ends with a “coffin in Egypt.” From creation to the grave. It is a sad commentary on the beginning and end plight of mankind. It reminds us that we have an eternal destiny, and that GOD is the one who is in charge, sovereignly guiding, the affairs of all people, and nations. We see that more clearly through all of Scripture.
Death is not a real pleasant thing to talk about. With some people you don’t even want to use the word “D-E-A-T-H”. Let’s be true and faithful about death. As I have already mentioned it is the enemy (1 Corinthians 15:26), and it is the “last enemy” to be destroyed; and that destruction will be by the appearing of Jesus Christ in His glory.
It doesn’t appear that Abraham or Sarah had a fear of death. The reason for that being their faith in GOD. It has been through the life, faith, and testimony of Abraham and Sarah that Jesus Christ has come into the world to save condemned, dying sinners from our plight. We are born spiritually dead – that means no relationship with God and thus no fellowship with God, because of sin. Because of the work of Jesus Christ, ie., His death on the cross, burial, and resurrection we can be “born again” into relationship, enabling our fellowship with Him; and receiving eternal life, living for Him now, and eternally with Him.
The follower of Jesus Christ need have no fear of death because of the cross of Jesus Christ, and His resurrection. The resurrection of Jesus proves without doubt that the enemy of death has been defeated. All who are in the faith of Jesus Christ will be raised to life.
Even Sarah, Abraham, all the patriarchs; and those who were before them; and all who came after them unto the cross of Christ will be raised to life again. All those who have believed following the death of Christ on the cross will also be raised to life. WOW!!! What a glorious day that will be.
It is a wonderful and glorious thing to know that though Genesis ends with that “coffin in Egypt”, the Scriptures end back in a garden, and in the presence of the LORD in glory – Heaven.
“Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost…” Titus 3:5 (KJV)
The faith of Abraham and Sarah was looking to the One who would come, die for the sins of mankind, be buried, and rise again from the grave. Believe Jesus and be delivered from death, and its fear.
-Tim A. Blankenship