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Home Sections Obituary-Memorial Park Fernando Gonzales (1930-2010): His Son Examines Death from the Bible’s Viewpoints
Fernando Gonzales (1930-2010): His Son Examines Death from the Bible’s Viewpoints PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - Obituary-Memorial Park
Written by Ramon Gonzales   
Wednesday, 29 December 2010 09:33

 

By Ramon Gonzales

 

Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for a moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations – George Bernard Shaw

 

My query now, should we the so-called Christians 'Pray for the Dead' (Ecclesiastes 9:5)?

 

To others, prayers on behalf of the dead have no meaning, for nothing can be changed by them. God's Word shows that the dead no longer have any physical or mental activity (Psalm 146:4; Ecclesiastes 9:5 and10). Each person who dies sleeps in his grave in unconsciousness until the resurrection (John 5:28-29; Daniel 12:2; Job 19:25-26; 14: 12-14; John 3:13; Acts 2:29). Clearly, prayers should be for the living while there is still hope of repentance, not for the dead, who can do nothing.

 

Predominately of our dear friends and relatives who prayed that the departed "soul" of my father, Fernando Gonzales, be spared some of its suffering. However, the Bible says that the soul itself can die (Ezekiel 18:4, 20; also, compare the last parts of Genesis 2:7, 17).  In addition, Solomon says the human spirit returns to God, not to some place of punishment (Ecclesiastes 12:7; see Job 32:8). God preserves the spirit until He can return it in the resurrection from the dead when eternal judgment – to either eternal life or eternal death – is determined (see Ezekiel 37:1-14; Revelation 20:14-15; 21:6:8).  

 

God promises to resurrect those who have died before being called and offer them salvation.  This includes most of humanity!  In the future, God will resurrect to physical life the billions of people from all of earth's history who have not had their minds opened to the truth of God's way of life (Revelation 20:11-13).  For the first time, these people will be able to accept or reject God's gift of eternal life.  God's Plan to convert humanity is so much more hopeful and loving than the traditional belief of an ever-burning hell as the destiny of those ignorant of Him and His Word!

 

Fernando's Wishes for his Burial

 

In view of the foregoing observations, my father used every appropriate opportunity to state his earnest desire that when he dies, he be buried by his close friends and family. To him, did he earnestly desire that people desist from taking him to a building mistakenly called a "church" for a "funeral service"? I still remember what he previously said to me that there is to be no such "service" – only a gathering for the burial.

 

He further desired that at his burial, there be absolutely no person with the title of "Bishop", "Pastor", "Reverend", "Father", or any other religious title officiating, because for him, such titles influence against the doctrine of the profession of all true believers. In this way, I hope and pray before he passed away this 28th of December at 5:00 p.m. in our conversation (between dad and son) to contribute to a return for him to the true Scriptural thought and practice about death.

 

He had already made his wishes known to the denomination Roman Catholic Church to which he had been closely associated. 

 

What then Will the Gonzales Family Do?

 

In this illuminated area, it is evident that God has created us as eternal creatures. What we can choose is where to spend eternity – with God, or separated from Him.  He has given His Son to die and resurrect for us, so that if we commit our lives wholly to Him, He will lead us into eternal life in His very presence with our resurrected and glorified bodies on the new earth. However, if we reject this offer, we thereby choose the second death, that is, the lake burning with fire and native sulphur (sulfur) – an eternity separated from the Source of all that is truly good: "Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of Him.  For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he has done, whether it be good or bad" (2 Corinthians 5:9-10).

 

Although biblically, He, the 'Lord Jesus Christ' existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, Philippians 2:6-10 NASB

 

Please pray for my father to his Rest In Peace (RIP).  In the mighty name of Jesus, AMEN! # # #

 

E ditor’s Note: Brother Ramon Gonzales is a Filipino expatriate presently based in the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. He is very active online and posts frequently religious articles in several e-forums. He has contributed some articles to this website. We send to him and the Gonzales Family our most-sincere condolences and prayers for his late father.

 

 

 

 



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Comments (7)
1 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 10:07
Dear Brother Ramon:

We took the literary initiative of publishing in our website's Obituary and Memorial Park Section your piece on the death of your beloved father. Here is the hyperlink:

Fernando Gonzales (1930-2010): His Son Examines Death from the Bible’s Viewpoints

URL: http://www.mabuhayradio.com/obituary-memorial-park/fernando-gonzales-1930-2010-his-son-examines-death-from-the-bible-s-viewpoints

We invite you and your family members to send us more details about your late Dad, so that we can publish an article about him in a forthcoming book, "Wisdom of, and Lessons from, Filipino Fathers" (new tentative title) as explained in this article,

Wisdom of our Filipino Fathers (Without Apology to Tim Russert)

URL: http://www.mabuhayradio.com/obituary-memorial-park/wisdom-of-our-filipino-fathers-without-apology-to-tim-russert

We send to you and the Gonzales Family our most-sincere condolences and prayers for his late father.

In solidarity,

Bobby M. Reyes
Editor
www.mabuhayradio.com

In a message dated 12/28/2010 4:33:09 P.M. Pacific Standard Time, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it writes:

My dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

Sadly, my 80 years old DAD passed away this 5pm.

I wish to quote: "Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got hold of for a moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations." - George Bernard Shaw

My query now, should we the so-called Christians 'Pray for the Dead' (Ecclesiastes 9:5)? <<(Snipped)>>
2 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 12:48
Dear Ramon,

My condolences...

According to some, 'death may be an end that becomes a memory'...

Jamima
3 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 12:50
Brother Ramon Gonzales;

Our deepest sympathy. We will extend our deep and solemn prayers for the repose of the soul of your father.

Ramon " Monching" Bunag
4 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 12:53
My prayers for the repose of his soul and for your family in this hour of grief.

Vicky G.

Victoria P. Garchitorena
President
Ayala Foundation, Inc.
Philippine Development Foundation USA
5 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 13:17
My prayers are with you during your hours of sorrow. May your father's soul rest in peace.

Eddie
6 Wednesday, 29 December 2010 17:58
I am sorry to hear the death of your father. My most profound condolence to you and your family.

Roberto
7 Thursday, 30 December 2010 05:03
Please accept my most heartfelt sympathies for your loss.
My thoughts are with you and your family during this difficult time.

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