怀念Dale Ward (五): 死亡观

WCB_logo_03 (159 x 160)2006年10月10日凌晨4点钟, Dale Ward,平安地断了气,离开了这世界。他是生命之光广播电台的节目部经理。

在很多方面Dale逝世很不平凡。我所说的不平凡并不是因为他发生什么意外,好像车祸或飞机失事等。我所说的不平凡并不是因为他太年轻—他62岁。不是因为他去世很突然—他养病养了几年。(事实上他进去医院那天,我们没想到他会走那样快。)我用“不平凡”这个词,意思是Dale在医院时,他所作的,他所说的,他的为人,他的想法,他面对死亡的态度,都是我们很少见到的。

虽然我是基督徒,又是基督教会传道人,虽然多年来我见过几位正在面对死亡,即将要离开世界的,但是我很少见到一位象Dale这样。Dale没有因为将要离开世界而生气,没有因为大夫不能治好他的病而埋怨大夫,没有因为见不到孙子、孙女长大而向上帝不满,没有因为他的生命快要结束而失去他的信仰。Dale只说:但愿主耶稣实行他的旨意在我的身上;愿神的旨意在我的生命上显得完全。Dale脸上有微笑,有时候他会开开玩笑。每次我去看望他时,他都请我给他念圣经,为他祷告。

Dale还表现什么样的态度呢?Dale牵着耶稣的手走上世人最后必须走的路。如圣经的作者大卫王所说的,“我虽然行过死荫的幽谷,也不怕遭害,因为你与我同在”,Dale完全信任他在天上的天父神。Dale祷告时,有信心,说话时,对未来有保障,深信天上的神会为他预备最好的。耶稣基督是他的力量,他的拯救,他的安慰。Dale把自己交托给神,因为知道在神的面前和怀抱里一天,远超过在受痛苦的身体里一千天。从小Dale信仰耶稣基督,所以躺在床上,准备面对死亡的时候,Dale内心深处就有神所赐的平安。Dale拥有“那超越人所能理解的平安”,就是“藉着基督耶稣来保守[基督徒]的心怀意念”的平安(腓立比书4:7现代中文译本)。

Dale Ward02 (200 x 250)Dale在医院的态度就体现了基督徒人生观。大夫们,护士们,医院工作人员,包括送菜的和管理卫生间的都认为Dale的态度和一般病人的态度不一样。

Dale这不平凡的态度来自他的信仰。Dale是一名基督徒;他信仰耶稣基督。Dale知道耶稣爱他,关心他。知道耶稣已经走过万人必定走的路,耶稣早接受了痛苦,被钉十字架上,死了,所以耶稣完全明白我们的痛苦。Dale也知道耶稣从死里复活了,他从坟墓里出来了。因为耶稣胜过死亡,所以他把复活的盼望给他的门徒。Dale是耶稣的门徒,所以Dale心理有永生的盼望,永生的应许;他对未来有把握。

从Dale Ward入院一直到他平安地离开了人间时,他活出了基督徒的人生观,信仰观和死亡观。他一直把握着基督徒的复活观。

如果您羡慕Dale的人生观,请您跟他一样认识耶稣基督,成为基督徒。请您阅读圣经,从中得知耶稣是谁,他怎么爱您,他为您做了些什么。为了知道如何成为基督徒,请您阅读圣经新约使徒行传。请您浏览我们的网站或者写信给我。

Memories of Dale Ward /05: Attitude Toward Death
By Edward Short

About 4:00 a.m. on October 10, 2006, Dale Ward passed peacefully from this life. Dale was the Executive Producer for World Christian Broadcasting.

Dale’s death was unusual in many ways. When I say “unusual,” I don’t mean that he met some tragedy such as a car wreck or an airplane accident. I don’t mean that he died at an unusually young age—he was 62—or that he passed away suddenly; he had had congestive heart failure for several years. (In fact, however, the day Dale entered the hospital, we had no idea that he would pass so quickly.) What I mean by “unusual” is that while Dale was in the hospital, all that he did and said, his demeanor, his thoughts, his conversations, and his attitude toward death were all very unusual, and are rarely seen.

Even though I’m a Christian and a minister of the gospel, even though I’ve witnessed a number of people face death, only a few times have I ever seen someone face death like Dale did. Dale didn’t react to his situation in anger. He didn’t blame the doctor for not being able to cure his illness. He didn’t feel like God cheated him because he wouldn’t be able to see his grandchildren grow up. Knowledge that he was about to die didn’t cause him to loose his faith. Rather, Dale expressed the desire that God’s will be done in his life, and he wanted to give himself over completely to making God’s will manifest in his life.

Dale smiled, and sometimes he joked. Each time I visited him in the hospital, Dale asked me to read to him from the Bible, and to pray for him.

What other attitudes did Dale express? He held the hand of Jesus and walked the Final Road that each of us must walk. As King David said in the book of Psalms, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me,” Dale also completely trusted in God, his Father in heaven. When Dale prayed, he prayed in faith; when he spoke, he spoke with confidence in the future, knowing that God would do for him what was best. Jesus Christ was Dale’s strength, salvation and comfort. Dale put himself into the safe arms of the Lord. He believed that one day in the presence of God was far better than a thousand days of suffering in the body. Dale had believed in Jesus Christ from childhood, and so while lying on his bed in the hospital and knowing that his life would end, deep in his heart he had peace, the peace that God gives. Dale possessed “the peace of God which transcends all understanding,” the peace “that will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” [Philippians 4:7 NIV].

Dale’s attitude in the hospital was the embodiment of the Christian philosophy of life. The physicians, the nurses, other hospital employees including those who brought food trays and those who cleaned the bathrooms, all thought that Dale’s attitude was different from that of most other patients.

This unusual attitude that Dale possessed came from his faith. He was a Christian; he put his faith in Jesus Christ. Dale knew that Jesus loved him and cared for him. He knew that Jesus had already walked this road that all mankind must tread, that Jesus had accepted suffering by being nailed to a cross and dying, and so Jesus completely understands our pain. Dale also knew that Jesus was raised from death and had vacated the grave. Having overcome death, Jesus gave the hope of resurrection to his disciples. Dale was a disciple of Jesus, so deep in his heart, he had the hope of eternity and the promise of eternal life; he faced the future with confidence.

From the time that Dale entered the hospital until he peacefully passed from this life he embodied the Christian philosophy of life and faith, and the Christian view of death. He always held tightly to the Christian belief in resurrection.

If you admire Dale’s philosophy of life, you too can come to know the same Jesus Christ whom he knew; you too can become a Christian. Read the Bible, wherein you’ll find all about who Jesus is, how he loves you, and what he’s done for you. To find out how to become a Christian, read the book of Acts in the New Testament. I also invite you to visit our website or to write me a letter.


怀念Dale Ward (五):  死亡观
Memories of Dale Ward /05: Attitude Toward Death
作者:谢德华 By Edward Short
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