Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Theme: Looking forward to the resurrection.
Object: None needed
Scripture: I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth. And after my skin has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes. Job 19:25-27a (NIV)  But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage, and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels.  They are God's children, since they are children of the resurrection. Luke 20:35-36 (NIV)

When I was a child, I was taught a prayer to say before I went to sleep at night. Perhaps you have heard it yourself. It goes like this:

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
If I should die before I wake,
I pray the Lord my soul to take.

Most of us don't like to think about dying, but it really isn't anything to fear, because the Bible teaches us that, for God's children, dying is like going to sleep. There are many verses in the Bible that talk about people who have died as being "asleep in Jesus."

Job was a faithful servant of God who went through much suffering and pain. His body had wasted away to the point that it was little more than skin and bones. Even though he was staring death in the face, Job was not afraid. "I know that my Redeemer lives," said Job, "and in the end he will stand upon the earth. Even though my body may be destroyed, I will see him with my own eyes." Job knew that death is not the end for a child of God.

Jesus taught the same thing. One day a group of religious leaders came to Jesus and were asking him questions about the resurrection. Jesus told them that in the end, those who place their faith and trust in God "will be like the angels and will be God's children, because they have been raised to life."

"Now I lay me down to sleep." For God's children, there is no reason to be afraid. Like Job, we can say, "I know that my Savior lives and one day I will see him with my own two eyes!"

Dear Father, for those of us who place our faith and trust in you, death is nothing more than a little nap. We look forward to the day when we will wake up to see you with our very own eyes. Amen.

Note: Some have expressed concern that this message might be too disturbing for young children and that it might cause children to be afraid to go to sleep.  It is here to give you something to think about, but use your best judgement as to whether it should be shared with children.

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