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how would YOU preach a funeral?

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#1
JohnDB

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...would you only observe their grief for their loss?

 

....would you capitalize on their truly facing death and mortality for a change and a chance to share the Gospel?

 

We are ALL priests of God in Christ (1 Peter 2:3-9, Revelation 1:6, Revelation 5:10) and are to be ready (prepared) to give an answer in season or out of season to every man a reason for the hope that is within us...

 

So... how would you personally preach a funeral if you were called upon to do so?



#2
LadyKay

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It would greatly depend the person who died. How they lived. What they did with their life. Who they helped. And most importantly rather or not they were saved at their time of death.  I say if they were saved at their time of death, then this should be a time to rejoice! For they are finely free from this crappy world and all its problems. And they are now in a place of peace and rest. While we morn over them because we will miss them. We know that someday if are hearts our right with God, will will join them again in that beautiful place where there is no hunger, no more pain, no more tears, and no more tax returns to fill out!

 

What I would say if the person was unsaved I have no ideal. I don't think I would be very good at that.  



#3
MissPlaced_56

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JohnDB,

many many years ago, i worked for a pharmacy, "doc" was the pharmisist , and wise...i was faced with going to my very first funeral and was very concerned about what to say to the grieving...more importantly what not to say to them....as i didn't want to make their grief worse if that was possible...

 

"Doc" bless his wise heart told me this "there are no right words at a time like this"nothing that you say is going to change the fact that their loved one isn't with them any longer

 As the years have gone by I have witnessed several funerals.....If the deceased loved one wasn't saved,it will only cause more harm to make an issue of this......remember their grieving for someone that they loved.

 

I have also witnessed how NOT to preach a funeral message,and i can tell you i wanted to jump those pews and smack that preacher!!!

 

by thetime that preacher was done,he had basically told the grieving parent's of this child that it was GODS FAULT that their child had died!...robbing those parents of the very source of comfort that they needed to cling to ...GOD

 

So you asked how would I preach a funeral.....

JohnDB, i would preach it with compassion,loving kindness and share their tears of grief.

 

GBU Brother!

 

~~~MISS~~~



#4
B3L13v3R

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Quote: JohnDB "...would you only observe their grief for their loss?"

Never, I always in the love of Christ, have their eternal souls in mind. Although recognizing their grief at the same time.

Quote: JohnDB "....would you capitalize on their truly facing death and mortality for a change and a chance to share the Gospel?"

 Always looking to present the Gospel in it's straight forwardness, as represented in the Bible.
When I have not spoken up directly, I'll stand outside, passing along Christian tracts with a sound Biblical message of repentance towards God, and Salvation being found in Christ alone.
The Christian tracts are especially helpful when I have come across funerals that have had Satanic New Age "Preachers."
I have been to three such funerals in the past, where the false preacher was a wolf in sheep’s clothing...

One particularly false preacher comes to mind, who, after the funeral, I presented the Gospel to him outside of the funeral home.
He then proceeded to flame me loudly, onlookers wondering what in the world was going on... :o
Demonic spiritual manifestation was what was going on... He then jumped in his SUV and sped off, making a point of stopping on the street and flaming me yelling through his window one more time. I simply spoke loudly in his direction: "Repent!" He then sped off...
Followed up with my family, praying again for all, asking the Good Lord to use the tracts, and save this false preacher.

Quote: JohnDB "We are ALL priests of God in Christ (1 Peter 2:3-9, Revelation 1:6, Revelation 5:10) and are to be ready (prepared) to give an answer in season or out of season to every man a reason for the hope that is within us..."

Indeed, as Christians we should all be ready to give that answer!

 Quote: JohnDB "So... how would you personally preach a funeral if you were called upon to do so?"

I was at a very difficult memorial not long ago, one that was done in an Episcopalian church setting.  After a grueling hour of liturgy, prayers to the dead, not partaking of the false Eucharist, and in light of many other devilish things, intact with a homosexual woman priest with her rainbow cross...
I finally got a chance to preach.  I looked prayerfully to reach out to all the lost in attendance, which as far as I could tell was nearly if not everybody.
Kept the message simple, noting that the deceased had made their decision and it was now permanent in the sense of eternity. I gracefully brought up a number of rightly divided Scripture verses expounding on the free gift of Salvation there for all in attendance, should they repent and believe on the True Gospel.
I thank God, the Lord's conviction was upon the majority in my hearing. Afterwords, a looong moment of silence.

Upon stepping down from the raised stage, the main "father/priest" of the false church had a look of hatred my way.
So goes the saying "if looks could kill..."

After the memorial, my family politely stood outside, passing along Gospel tracts to all who would receive one. :)



#5
shiloh357

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There is no formula for preaching a funeral in that it really does matter if the deceased is lost or saved.

 

If I were preaching the funeral of an unsaved  person, think I would say something to the effect of, "John has passed on into eternity and I believe if John could speak to us today, he would tell us that there is a heaven and there is hell.  And I believe that if John were able to say anything to us, he would tell us how important it is that each of here today make sure that we know Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior."   I would then use that as a platform to preach the Gospel for duration of my message at the funeral. 



#6
other one

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I think it would really depend on the person who died.....   if they were a Christian, I would basically preach it as a celebration for that person and speak of the things they had done and that if those in the room were born again they would see that person again.

 

If they were not christians then I would just point out their good side and try and make the family as comfortable as possible.   Funerals are really for the people who survive a person.

 

 

Then there are people like my Uncle Boug who was a low life dark side certifiably bad person.    The preacher at his funeral spoke the raw open truth about him and told his family and kids that there was no doubt in anyone's mind that old Boug was burning in hell and deserved all the pain he was going to receive........   he then told by name his kids and his wife and told them that if they did not change their ways and come to the Lord they would be joining Uncle Boug at their passing also.   I don't know for sure if my three cousins actually were ever saved, for we haven't been around each other much since, but everyone tells me that they change for the good that day.

 

I think if a person was going to preach a funeral I would think one should ask the Holy Spirit for guidance for what to tell the family.   Personally I don't like going to funerals that end up being a preaching service for everyone to come to the Lord.....    with very few exceptions.



#7
shiloh357

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A funeral is one of the best times to preach the Gospel.  You have a captive audience for one, AND they are all being reminded of their own mortality and that one day it will be them in that casket.  It is when people are faced with the cold hard reality of death that they are likely to be the most receptive to the Gospel.  Part of the Gospel is also the victory we have over death, that for the Christian death is swallowed up in victory.



#8
Cassandra

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By the life that they lived.



#9
kwikphilly

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Blessings to Everyone....

     I lost my dad not long ago & I was lead (unexpectedly) to get up & give my dads eulogy ......I shared with everyone there things that no one knew about my dad & what he meant to me,how much he meant to others and what he contributed to everyone he met along his life's journey .I know it was the Holy spirit that gave me the strength to speak & the words to say..........(here is just what was said in closing).......................

     

     Hardly a day went by (my entire life) that I did not speak to my dad,& that is what I will miss the most,hearing his voice "Hi Babe"....Well ,these last months we had many a conversation about our Lord & Savior"Jesus Christ"-that is the Blessed Assurance that my father is now in the Presence of God.As I say "good bye",he is greeted by many of his loved one's who guide him to our Lord Jesus,,,,,,and through Him my father is gifted  eternal life....It should be a time for celebration but I am selfish,growing up i never learned to share my dad & so I will miss him so.......

     As long as each & every one of us knows Jesus then we can all one day be re-united.....IF NOT,then it is time to put things in order because our lives are"but a vapor"..............So,let's just say "farewell" for now & remember with reverence the great man that he was....and as he has influenced so many lives(family & friends)he will never be forgotten

    I'll see you soon Daddy...............

 

So,I believe God presents us with every opportunity to "preach"the Gospel......we only have to follow his lead,,,,,,there was not a dry eye there as his only child(me) gave his eulogy & Jesus Name was spoken in every conversation I had with each person that came up to me afterwards,the Holy Spirit was moving in a powerful way......I thank God for carrying me through that time,I thought surely I would fall apart at the seams but instead the Lord gave me His strength & used me to encourage others,comfort ,console them & receive His Word,,,,,Glory to God

                                                                                                              With love-in Christ,Kwik



#10
B3L13v3R

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Temporarily lost a friend and brother in the Lord recently. I'll be going to his funeral soon, looking to see God glorified. :)



#11
FresnoJoe

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Temporarily lost a friend and brother in the Lord recently. I'll be going to his funeral soon, looking to see God glorified. :)

 

Amen~!

Praying~!



#12
BeauJangles

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I have never been called to "Preach a Funeral." I would not find it an easy responsibility. I'm shy, introverted, and get stage-fright at the very thought of speaking before a group of people... Especially a funeral or memorial, for recent past loved-ones. However, I did feel obligated to stand and give words of sentiment and comfort, following the unexpected loss of my father at age 67, a best friend at age 53, and a cousin I had been close to, at age 46.

 

Sister Kwik called it a eulogy. That's it... Exactly right on the mark. Knowing in advance each service was giving opportunity for anyone to come forward to the podium, or stand where they were seated, and share what they had to say. I pondered in my grief, did I have anything to contribute at all? So I prayed... The best first choice. "What would I say, Lord? You know I'm afraid to speak before a crowd." And I waited for an answer.

 

What came to mind, was surprisingly simple... Just share what's in your heart. Recall fond memories. Tell about some special personal moments you've had. Express your sorrow, but remind those gathered, that you have assurance of where each of these loved-ones are. That they're in Heaven now, and you'll see them again... Never to depart. I had to remind myself, that the Lord was with me. Take courage and not be afraid. 

 

In each of the services, I sat through a bit anxiously anticipating the time for people to give their sentiments. At one point I felt, Okay, stand up, it's your turn now... You've got the floor. The moment I stood up, all fear and anxiety left me. I gathered the thoughts and gave what was on my mind and expressed the feelings in my heart... Other thoughts were given. It seemed effortless. I closed with a few more words and sat down. God had given me the strength. I was so thankful, knowing the Lord indeed was with me. 

 

Following each of these services, friends and loved-ones, even people I didn't know came up to me and personally thanked me, for what I had shared. So did the officiated ministers... And I said, "I'm a real shy guy. Only the Lord could have helped me to stand and speak before a crowd like this." After a lot of hugs and hand-shakes, I paused and again thanked the Lord, that He could in some way use me for His purpose to give comfort to those who were equally in grief, over their own personal loss.

 

So, I would say for anyone in a position such as this, pray and trust the Lord to back you up... Not only in this, but in all  things! 

God bless you,

Shalom

David/BeauJangles



#13
kwikphilly

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Blessings Beau,

      Amen Brother...............the Lord gives us strength we did not know could even be possible & that in itself gives Him Glory!!!!

                                                                                                                                                           With love-in Christ,Kwik



#14
BeauJangles

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Thank you, dear Sister Kwik... As I re-read first post, I wanted to express to you, my sorrow for the recent loss of your father. My father passed on a warm late October day, long ago with my sister, a nurse at his hospital bedside. I know the Comforter, Spirit of the Living God, is within you and surrounds you at this time... It took much wonder working power to officiate a truly beautiful eulogy, you expressed in your most excellent post. God bless you. David/BeauJangles



#15
kwikphilly

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Blessings Beau....

    Thank you ,your kindness is deeply appreciated ...........all the Glory belongs to God,I am continually in awe of Him!

                                                                                                                                               With love-in Christ,Kwik



#16
Macs Son

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...would you only observe their grief for their loss?
 
....would you capitalize on their truly facing death and mortality for a change and a chance to share the Gospel?
 
We are ALL priests of God in Christ (1 Peter 2:3-9, Revelation 1:6, Revelation 5:10) and are to be ready (prepared) to give an answer in season or out of season to every man a reason for the hope that is within us...
 
So... how would you personally preach a funeral if you were called upon to do so?


Hi John DB,
I just did this a couple of weeks ago. I have found funerals a place where we can reflect on the lives of others and they are a great opportunity to share the Gospel. Of course that is much easier to do when the person being eulogized is a Christian for that gives us opportunity to rejoice that they are absent from the body present with the Lord. But it is also a time where we can show great kindness and mercy towards family members who are grieving as well. When the Lord is present at the ceremony through the Spirit of God it changes everything and healing, hope and faith can help all those searching for meaning and truth for not a sparrow falls to the ground without our heavenly Father's knowledge. Let me know if you'd like a copy of my eulogy - it was my mother in law.
In Christ, Pat

#17
JohnDB

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In this hour of absolute certainty that we all will one day die, would you / could you deny the dearly departed their very last request?

 

The last request of a saved man we will get to in a moment, but to cover all bases let's begin with:

 

The last request of a lost dead man...

 

Luke 16:19-31 (NKJV)
19 “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day.
20 “But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate,
21 “desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 “So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.
23 “And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’
25 “But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.
26 ‘And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’
27 “Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house,
28 ‘for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’
29 “Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’
30 “And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’
31 “But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.’ ”

 

Proverbs 23:18 (NKJV)
18 For surely there is a hereafter, And your hope will not be cut off.

 

Job 19:23-27 (NKJV)
23 “Oh, that my words were written! Oh, that they were inscribed in a book!
24 That they were engraved on a rock With an iron pen and lead, forever!
25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth;
26 And after my skin is destroyed, this I know, That in my flesh I shall see God,
27 Whom I shall see for myself, And my eyes shall behold, and not another. How my heart yearns within me!

 

The last request of a lost dead man "do not come to this place of torment!"

 

The last request of a saved dead man, "I will be waiting for you in heaven. Be there!"

 

John 3:16-18 (NKJV)
16 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
17 “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.
18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

 

No fingers pointed at who was lost who was saved. Only the example of the last request of both.



#18
Willa

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Some of the people who have passed on that did come to know the Lord had a celebration of their life.  It was a great opportunity to preach the way of salvation.   But it helps to remember the good times even when they were hard hearted and hated Christians.  Sometimes the good times were hard to remember.  My hubby remembered wrestling on the floor with his dad.  And had they been allowed a short eulogy that might have been one that he would mention.  Hubby carried on the tradition with our kids and grandkids.  As it was, Dad thought he was just as good as the next guy so he would go to heaven.  The Masons declared him good because he had advanced a degree or 2.  The Elks said he had been in good standing.  The Episcopal church said he had been baptized so he was going to heaven.  Even the Mormon relatives called us and told us they had been baptized for him!   And hubby still hopes that he had time to repent and call on the Name of the Lord before he crashed his plane by flying into a mountain side.  

 

The thing that I hate about eulogies is when they rave about what a wonderful father someone had been when they were a dead beat dad who used drugs and never repented.  Some even had repeated a prayer once but never had a changed life or even changed attitudes.  To me, a total change in attitudes is the acid test.  

One lady who had led a sinful life was saved a year before she died.  Her goal was to read clear through the Bible before she died.  Her bones, brain and lungs were riddled with cancer and she was in excruciating pain.  Pain and narcotics slowed her ability to accomplish this goal..  But until the last few months she still came to church.  She was unable to be immersed with her colostomy bag, but they held a special sprinkling ceremony for her after church.  This lady's attitudes had totally changed and she really loved the Lord.  But her life was not a great testimony of good works---only that she no longer sinned or cursed and she loved fellowship with the Christians that she once mocked.  She constantly called upon God to help her endure the pain and testified how He made it possible for her to make it through another night.

 

It is not wise or kind to tell a family that has just lost a loved one that the person probably did not ever receive Christ.   It will almost always turn the family away from God.  It is better to preach the Gospel at a wedding or a baby dedication, or a baptism.  God does not use the Gospel to club them over the head.  It is good news of His unmerited kindness and love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 






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