There’s a lot happening in the world today. Even the most stouthearted person can be overcome by fear when watching the news. “Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God” (Psalm 43:5). Christians need to remember that no matter what happens in the world around us, our Hope is with Jesus.
The first Christians faced deadly persecution because of their faith, but they wouldn’t allow government oppression to stifle the truth of the Gospel. Many Christians were martyred, but wouldn’t allow fear to stand in their way of spreading God’s truth. Aside from fear, there’s always been grief that can shatter our faith. Even though we know that our Christian friends and family have gone to be with Jesus, there’s still emptiness and sorrow when a loved one dies.
Horatio Spafford was one who felt terrible grief and sorrow over many events in his life. Mr. Spafford had been successful in business, but lost a great deal of money in 1871 because of the great Chicago fire. The death of his young son brought much sorrow, and he and his wife decided to take their four daughters on a vacation to England. His wife and daughters sailed first, and he would follow on another ship after taking care of some business. The ship his family was on sank, and his four daughters drowned. His wife survived, and I can only imagine her grief. When he heard the news, he sailed right away to join his wife. Because Mr. Spafford was a Christian, he found comfort in Christ.
As the ship he was on passed over the spot where his daughters drowned, words of comfort came to him from the Holy Spirit. From those tragic events came a song that can bring comfort in our troubled times. Horatio Spafford wrote the words, and Philip Bliss wrote the music to “It Is Well with My Soul.” In the trying times in which we live, we can find truth and comfort in the words.
When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Who among us has never felt sorrow? My first brush with the loss of a loved one came when I was six years old. My 14-year old brother was killed in an automobile accident. I woke up one morning and was overjoyed to see that my grandmother was there. My joy soon turned to sorrow as she took me on her lap and explained that my brother had died. My grandmother, a lovely Christian woman who found strength through Christ, was able to help me that day and taught me a lesson that has strengthened me through many loses. She told me about Jesus and about Heaven. My brother was with God, and one day we would be together again.
No matter what we face in life, we can always trust Jesus to see us through. Whether we’re in a time of great joy and have peace like a river, or if tragedy and sorrow weigh us down with grief, if our faith is in Jesus, we can say “It is well with my soul.”
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
Satan is our enemy, not people. He will take every opportunity to use fear and sorrow to make us question whether or not Jesus really cares. Don’t let that evil creature twist God’s words or confuse your mind. Jesus cares more than we can imagine. He willingly died on the cross and shed His own blood in order to save us from damnation. That’s perfect love. He never said that accepting His sacrifice for salvation would make life easy. In fact, He said we would have troubles.
“These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
Jesus had just told His disciples that He would soon be crucified and that they would face persecution and hardship. He comforted them with the knowledge that He wouldn’t leave them without help in their time of trials.
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth; it is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you” (John 16:7).
The Comforter is the Holy Spirit. When we accept Christ’s sacrifice, the Holy Spirit is sealed within us. Our true Home is in Heaven, but while we live in this fallen world filled with sorrow and fear, the Holy Spirit will guide and comfort us. The uncertainty of tomorrow can make today very worrisome. Fear and sorrow can cause us to forget that God is with us. Satan uses that to destroy our confidence in Jesus. We need to let the blessed assurance of our faith in Jesus control our thoughts.
My sin – oh, the bliss of this glorious thought –
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
Let that sink in. Every sin that you or I will ever commit was upon Jesus as He hung on the cross. Jesus paid the full price for our redemption. That’s a debt that only He could pay. He is God. Only His blood, untainted by the curse that Adam’s sin infected all of creation with, could be the perfect sacrifice to take sin away. Jesus was fully God and fully human. His mother, Mary, was nothing more than a human. Because of that, Jesus was a fellow human and qualified to be our Kinsman. He had no human father; He was conceived by the Holy Spirit. Because God was His Father, His blood wasn’t tainted by Adam’s sin. This qualified Him to be our Kinsman Redeemer. He shed His blood for you and for me and was the final sacrifice to take our sin away.
The Law of Moses was a shadow of the sacrifice of Jesus. “But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year. For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” (Hebrews 10:3-4). Jesus fulfilled the Law and the Prophets and redeemed us through His sacrifice. Faith in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ takes our sin away. “By the which will [by this will] we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all” (Hebrews 10:10). When a person finally understands that sin separates him or her from God, and accepts the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for salvation, what joy! Praise the Lord for His love! Praise the Lord, I’m forgiven! Praise the Lord, O my soul!
For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
Most people fear death because they’re uncertain what will happen when they take their final breath in this life. A non-believer has much to fear. By rejecting Christ, they choose eternal damnation. For a Christian, death in this life only means we’ve stepped into eternity with Jesus. There should be no fear. “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21). God is with us always. When a loved one dies, we feel deep grief, but if that person has accepted Christ while in this life, we should find comfort in knowing they are in the presence of their Redeemer.
But, Lord, ‘tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!
Not everyone will see death. “Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).
What a blessed hope that is! Whether we die before the Rapture or are called Home before we see death, our blessed hope is in Jesus. At that time, we’ll no longer face temptation to sin, we’ll have no fear of what’s happening in the world, and there’ll be no more aches, pains, or sorrow that trouble our mortal bodies. “Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (for we walk by faith, not by sight:) we are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord” (2 Corinthians 5:6-8). What a day that will be!
And Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.
Those of us who study prophecy are very excited. Prophetic events are rapidly being fulfilled, and it won’t be long until Jesus calls us Home. Soon our faith will be sight! If you think prophecy doesn’t matter, or that it’s too confusing to understand, then you need to think again.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
The study of prophecy can relieve many fears. A few short years ago, there were many prophecies we couldn’t understand how they would come about. Now it’s becoming clearer every day. There’s talk of a one-world religion, one-world government, one-world currency, and the technology for the Mark of the Beast is in place. The prototype of it will be in the form of the vaccine that Bill Gates is concocting for the Corona virus. No, that shot isn’t the Mark described in Revelation chapter 14, but it will evolve into it. They want to implant a microchip in everyone to make sure they’ve taken the vaccine.
End-time events are quickly coming into focus, but it is well with my soul because I know that before any of the seals are opened and before the four horsemen ride to begin Daniel’s 70th week, Christians will be raptured. Praise the Lord for that blessed hope and the promise that we will not be on earth for God’s wrath.
If you’re filled with fear about the riots, the hatred, the threats of war, and all other headlines that fill news reports, stop and ask yourself where your hope lies. Is that fear because you allow Satan to rule in your life? Stop fearing and start trusting Jesus. Jesus is the Christian’s hope.
If you haven’t given your life to Him, you have a lot to fear. If you die without giving your life to Jesus, then the troubles of this life will seem mild. Eternal damnation by your own choice is what awaits you after death. Only accepting Jesus Christ as your Saviour will allow you to spend eternity with Him. By trusting Him you’ll also find that wonderful peace that passes all understanding while living in this world.
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:7).
It’s a choice you have to make; and if you die before making the choice, you won’t get a second chance.
It is well with my soul
It is well, it is well with my soul.
Find His peace today. Only then can you say “It is well with my soul.”
God bless you all,
Ron and Nathele Graham’s previous commentaries archived at https://www.raptureready.com/featured/graham/graham.html
All original scripture is “theopneustos” – God breathed.
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