“Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.”
We’ve all had to pass through hard seasons of mourning. Perhaps that is where you are now. For those who mourn, today’s verse passage is surely one of the most precious of Christ’s promises to us. All competing religious systems promise an end to personal mourning, but Christ’s promise stands unique above them all. Whereas the various eastern, monistic schools of thought—including secular humanism—teach that mourning comes to an end with our annihilation, Jesus promises infinitely more. He promises not only to bring a cessation to human mourning, He promises to provide comfort also. This is a tremendous distinction. The Bible teaches that for all eternity, you will always be you; you will always have a unique mind, will, emotions, and a unique, God-ordained personal identity (1 Corinthians 4:7). Our Creator knows us intimately (Matthew 10:30). In fact, He knows us infinitely better than we could ever know ourselves (1 Corinthians 4:4). His ministry to us is therefore both specific and tender, granting to us individually what is needful for our comfort and edification (2 Corinthians 1:3-4). For those who mourn over personal sin (Psalm 38:3-4, 17-18), our Lord promises forgiveness and restoration (1 John 1:9). For those who mourn estrangement from immediate family, the Lord promises adoption into a magnificent new family of redeemed saints who are slated for glorification and confirmation in holiness (Matthew 19:29; 1 Corinthians 15; Philippians 3:20-21; 2 Peter 1:4; Revelation 22:11). For those who mourn the death of believing loved ones, our Lord promises a fantastic reunion one day (2 Samuel 12:23; Matthew 8:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:14-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:1). For those who mourn the state of our world, where men “call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter” (Isaiah 5:20), Jesus promises to usher in His Kingdom in which He will purge from the earth all things that offend (Matthew 13:41). The Lord referenced the writings of the great prophet, Isaiah, who articulated, powerfully and in first person, astounding realities concerning the comforting ministry of Christ. “The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound . . . to comfort all that mourn; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified” (Isaiah 61:1, 2b-3 cf. Luke 4:16-19).