Dust to Dust

Kevin DeYoung

READ : John 21:15-19

This he said to show by what kind of death he was to glorify God. (v. 19 ESV)

Jesus expected Peter to glorify him not only in living but in dying. The Bible never says we should like pain. Jesus didn’t like pain. If we liked it, it wouldn’t be pain! But God sends us pain, and ultimately death, that we might more fully glorify him. We are to be like those martyrs in Revelation who “did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death” (12:11 NIV). When we value faithfulness more than life, and knowing God more than compromise and ease, we show God to be supremely worthy of our affections and allegiance. This brings him great glory.

Don’t think the presence of suffering in your life means God is absent. Among other things, he is giving you an opportunity to honor him. I think of a dear man in our church with multiple sclerosis. He considers his disease a blessing because it has brought him so much closer to God. This man is a sweet fragrance to the goodness of the gospel because he loves God more than his own health.

The joyful life is not always easy, but it is always self-forgetful. Happiness is not thinking good thoughts about ourselves. It’s thinking about ourselves less and God more. Though dying, we yet live.


May dying be gain in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.