Remembrance Sunday Service

By Rev Kofi Amissah on November 8, 2020–fxyD2mZM

Text: For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout….And the dead in
Christ will rise first…Therefore comfort one another with these words (1 Thessalonians

Reading: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

Hymn: O God, our help in ages past – StF 132

As we remember the falling heroes of previous and present conflicts, we cannot ignore the
martyrs of the COVID-19 pandemic, who fell at the sward of the virus in the front line of
duty. We pray God’s comfort and soothing presence upon their family and loved one. To us,
as to the Church in Thessalonica, Paul brings a message of assurance of hope in the
resurrection and in life beyond the physical, anchored on three pillars:

First, the resurrection of Christ gives us hope (1 Thessalonians 4:14). The resurrection of
Christ Jesus is affirmed, that Christ died, rose again, and revealed himself to many of his
followers (1 Corinthians 15). The hope we have as Christians is anchored on the fact that
though Jesus Christ died, he rose again in victory. So, in the face of death, we have hope that
we serve the risen Christ.

Secondly, the promise of the resurrection of our departed loved ones gives us hope (1
Thessalonians 4:16). The greatest worry of Paul’s readers at the time, was their departed
loved ones, whose death they feared, has been in vain. In response to this, Paul says: ‘…the
dead in Christ will rise first’. Thus, when Paul concludes with these words: ‘…comfort one
another with these words’, he anchored that comfort on the hope that the dead will rise

Thirdly, the second coming of Christ and spending eternity with him in heaven give us
hope (1 Thessalonians 4:17). We have hope also because Christ himself will come again and
we will be with him forever. It is also because those who believe in Christ, will enjoy eternity
with God in heaven. Jesus himself said he is going to prepare a place for us, and he will come
again to take us to that place, and we will be with him (John 14:1-6; 27).

Brothers and sisters in Christ, hope in this life is good, hope beyond this life is better, but
hope in life after death spent with the risen Christ is the best. So, as we mourn our fallen
heroes and remember them, even pouring out tears and feeling the fears for our loss. Yet we
can be comforted because of our hope in this life, our hope in life beyond this body and our
hope in spending eternity with Christ Jesus in heaven. Comfort one another with these words.

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