Ruth Wills Funeral Sermon – Revelation 21:3-7 February 9th 2024 / The Master’s Plan
Crescent Road Cemetery in Strasbourg, Saskatchewan / Rev. Howard Ulmer / Friday February 9th 2024: Season of Epiphany / Revelation 21:3-7 “Master’s Plan”
“I heard a loud voice speaking from the throne: ‘Now God’s home is with mankind! He will live with them and they shall be his people. God Himself will be with them, and He will be their God. He will wipe away all tears from their eyes. There will be no more death, no more grief or crying or pain. The old things have disappeared.’ Then the One who sits on the throne said, ‘And now I make all things new!’ He also said to me, ‘Write this, because these words are true and can be trusted.’ And He said, ‘It is done! I am the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. To anyone who is thirsty I will give the right to drink from the spring of the water of life without paying for it. Whoever wins the victory will receive this from Me: I will be his God, and they will be My children.’” (Revelation 21:3-7 GNT)
Dear friends in Christ, especially the family of Ruth,
Today we gather to remember a wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and a friend to many. Last Friday I shared this reading from Revelation with Ruth and the family at Regina Lutheran Home. The book of Revelation is full of powerful words of comfort, hope and promise. These words were important to Ruth as she trusted in Jesus, her Lord and Saviour. They also provide reassurance to you as a family.
As we remember Ruth, it is her faith and trust in Jesus that is most important. She also shared this faith with her family. What a wonderful gift! We give thanks to God for her faithfulness and loving care. Our loving God continued to care for Ruth even in the midst of her health challenges.
God has a plan for our world. He created the world and continues to care for it. He created his people and continues to care for them. Although we sin and rebel against God, he cared for us by sending Jesus to be our Saviour. Through the death of Jesus on the cross and his resurrection from death, we have forgiveness of sin and the promised hope of eternal life. God, in His plan, continues to call us to repentance and to trust in Him. He guides and leads us to follow in the path that He has prepared. We do not walk alone. He speaks to us in His Word, the Bible. He speaks to us through others in times of a Worship Service and also in personal visits. In prayer we speak to Him and He also speaks to us. May we always be open and receptive to God’s plan and His message to us.
The Apostle John received this revelation from God. The words provide assurance that God is with His people. Yes, “The old things have disappeared.” He also says, “And now I make all things new!” God in His grace and mercy does “give the right to drink from the spring of the water of life without paying for it.” God promises these gifts. He promises victory through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour, when we believe in Him. To believe in Jesus means that we recognize our sinfulness, that is, our rebellion against God. This may include when we do not love God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. This may also include when we do not love our neighbour as ourselves. God invites us to confess our sin and receive forgiveness through Jesus Christ. He has won the victory through His death and resurrection. His victory provides hope and assurance of eternal life. Today we are reminded of His victory for all His people.
God is our Father, who comes to us in our sorrow and grief to provide comfort, hope and peace through Jesus. He understands our struggles and our loss. Family and friends, God provides comfort, strength and hope. God says, “I will be His God, and they will be my children.” Amen.