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All Saints Day

Ray Pritchard pastored in Los Angeles, Dallas and Chicago. Married to Marlene for 38 years, he enjoys being a husband, a father and a grandfather, riding his bike, and playing with Dudley and Gary, beloved basset hounds.

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This is All Saints Day, one of the finest, most joyful days of the Christian year. It’s the day when we remember and give thanks for all true believers around the world, especially those who have gone before us into heaven. Evangelicals often pay little attention to the Christian year (for various reasons), but this is one holiday that should really be a “holy day” for us. Think about the believers you know who are in heaven today. Do you have loved ones and friends who died in the Lord? Think of those saints of God who have passed from earth to heaven in the last 12 months. Remember them. It is biblical and right that we should not forget those who have entered the “Church Triumphant.” Give thanks to God for their life and testimony. Let the memory of their faith inspire you to serve Christ today.

Along those lines, I realized that my dear friend John Sergey is now in heaven, having passed from this life into heaven last January at the age of 91. Shortly after we moved from Oak Park in 2005, John called to see how we were doing, to say that he loved us, and to assure of his continued prayers. At one point he mentioned that every night before going to bed, he prayed through his entire prayer list. “It must be a mile long,” he said. Then he added these words, “When I come to your names, I feel warmed in my heart as I think of you and Marlene, and I feel as if I can meet you at the throne of grace.” Now he beholds the face of Jesus before that very throne. 

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I ran across this thought that seems fitting for this special day: “A world without saints forgets how to pray.” We don’t pray to the saints or through the saints and we don’t pray for the saints (they’re already in heaven and don’t need our prayers–we’re the ones who need both to pray and the prayers of others), but we let the memory of their faith inspire us to pray and serve the Lord today.
I found this brief meditation by A. W. Pink on “Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15). Here are three sermons that will help you focus on the promises of God that go beyond death:
At Home With the Lord: What is the Christian View of Death?  
Acorns to Oak Trees: How are the Dead Raised?  
Inside the Pearly Gates: What Will We Do in Heaven?  

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