Perhaps his misquote of John 3:16 showed more insight than was apparent at first. A Sparky recently gave this rendition: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should NOT PANIC but have everlasting life.”i
Francois Lalonde, husband of our French Awana missionary, is now in palliative care, the end of his earthly life is imminent. Although the mood in his family is solemn, there is no panic. His eternal life began years ago when he accepted God’s gift of salvation. His passing will simply change his address from here to there. He is saying good-bye to family and friends, passing the baton to others to carry on the ministries which he has prepared them for. There is a sense of completion, a feeling that he has accomplished what God had given him to do.
“Two weeks before dying from tuberculosis, colonial missionary to the American Indians David Brainerd pens in his journal, ‘Felt uncommonly peaceful; it seemed as if I had now done all my work in this world, and stood ready for my call to a better. As long as I see anything to be done for God, life is worth having; but O how vain and unworthy it is to live for any lower end!’”ii
As the Apostle Paul anticipated the end of his earthly life, he wrote to his protege Timothy, “The time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.” 2 Timothy 4:6b-8 NKJV
It seems to me this little Sparky spoke more than he knew, for there is NO PANIC for those who are in Christ. That’s the way I see it anyway. What do you think?