Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down, out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; THERE SHALL BE NO MORE DEATH, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.’ Then He who sat on the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’ – Revelation 21:2-5a.
“No more death” is the official policy in Le Lavandou, France. Gil Bernardi, mayor of the French Mediterranean town has banned dying because their cemetery is full. They had been planning to build a new cemetery in a peaceful setting by the sea, but a court has ruled that they must find somewhere else for those who die. About his ban on death Bernardi says, “Initially, the decree has been remarkably well followed.” However, a homeless man has disobeyed the ban by dying and Bernardi is desperately trying to find a final resting place for him.
There is so much pain in this world with death and dying all over this world. My parents are elderly, and my wife’s parents are elderly with many health problems. It is a difficult time as we see them decline in health, and we know that the inevitable result will be death, and they will be gone from our lives for now. We think of the friends and others whose lives have been cut short by death and we grieve that such things could happen. Death has stalked mankind ever since Adam and Eve were kicked out of the Garden of Eden.
We have to applaud Gil Bernardi for his ban on death because we would all like to see a ban on death and the pain associated with it. We know that Bernardi’s ban is unenforceable, and people are still dying in his little town, just as they are all across this earth even as I am writing these words. But the good news is that there will come a day when God Himself will issue a ban on dying and there will be “NO MORE DEATH, nor sorrow, nor crying” and “there shall be no more pain.” I can hardly wait!
Having such glorious hope of the future helps us to endure the present world because we know that some glorious, wondrous day this world of pain will be gone, and all things will be made new. Until then let us stand firm and let nothing move us from our love for and labor for our Lord (1 Corinthians 15:58).
(Hope of the future helps us to endure the present world because we know that some glorious, wondrous day this world of pain will be gone and all things will be made new.)