Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
December 7, 1961
NUMBER 31, PAGE 6,11a

"In God's Care"

C. D. Plum

Before the war, when metal was plentiful for everything, and when metal plates to be placed in caskets of the dead was the vogue everywhere, I read every metal plate in every casket I saw. Usually these plates had but one word on them. Sometimes the word was "Mother." Sometimes it was "Father." Very suggestive words, these. All the memories of the real life past center around these words. Sometimes the reading on these metal plates was "At Rest." This sometimes was a misnomer, as I have seen such "At Rest" plates in the caskets of people whose lives were not such as to be designated as being at rest. And under such conditions these plates did not scripturally represent the situation. But of all the plates I have ever seen in caskets, the ones that read: "In God's Care" appealed to me the most. And though I am sure even this plate could be a misnomer in some caskets with the dead, this phrase, "In God's Care," has always had a deep attraction for me. It is because I believe some edifying things may be said, and should be said, about this subject that I present this article.

Who Are In God's Care?

If we can understand who are especially in our care it should not be hard to understand who are in God's care. Our children are in our care. The Scripture declares: "But if any, provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel." (1 Tim. 5:8) My children belong to my house, and they are under my care. All of my children are in my house, my family. And so it is with God. God's children are in his care. All of God's children belong to his house, to his family but the church is the house of God. (1 Tim. 3:15) So all of God's children are in "the" church. And faithful members of the church are in God's care. They are in God's care while they live, and they are in God's care when they are dead. What a consolation to loved ones left behind to know that loved ones gone on before are in God's care. This is why the Holy Spirit said, "But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, (dead) that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope." (1 Thess. 4:13) With such assurance we know positively that our loved ones will be looked after most tenderly.

Occasionally I find some who claim that all people are in God's care because they claim all are God's children. In the creative sense God is the Father of us all, it is true. We have a common origin. We came from God. He made "us. "The Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul." But in the family sense all are not God's children. While I have concern for all children, I have the care of my children. And while God has great CONCERN, for all people, he has the CARE of his people. Children were born into my family to become my children. People are "born of water and the spirit" (John 3:5), "Born of water and the word" (1 Pet. 1:23), . to become the children of God. Penitent, confessing believers are set apart as children of God "with the washing of water (baptism) by the word." (Eph, 5;26) By such a process people become the children of God, and thereby place themselves in the care of God.

Are All Of God's Children Saved In Heaven?

That all depends upon God's children. Are all of our children obedient to us? Do any of our children become so disobedient that we have to cut them out of our inheritance? May not the children of God so live as to be disinherited by God? They may. Paul said, "I myself might be a castaway." Showing the possibility of falling away from the grace of God. The Galatian brethren had "fallen from grace." (Gal. 5:4; 4:9) The church at Ephesus had "left their first love." (Rev. 2:4) This church had fallen and was no longer in God's care in her fallen state. (Rev. 2:5) This church could be restored if she would "repent," otherwise it would be cut off. Her candlestick would be removed.

"Called — Chosen — Faithful"

"These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of Kings: and they that are with him are the called, and chosen, and faithful." (Rev. 17:14)

Yes, those who are in God's care have been called. All of which means the children of God have been called. Not just the preachers called. All of God's children have been called. "Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ." (2 Thess. 2:14) The denominational world teaches a calling that is unscriptural. They teach a calling separate and apart from the gospel for preachers. I have heard many denominational preachers say they were called direct by God to preach. Of course they were not. God would not call preachers to preach something that contradicts what his gospel says, like these denominational preachers do. The only calling God makes today is through his gospel. And since this gospel is to go into all the world, the whole world has been called.

God's people have not only been called by the gospel, but the Scripture says they are chosen. The whole world has been called by the gospel, but that part of the responsible world that has obeyed the gospel has been chosen to be God's children. Those who obey the gospel are born into God's family, the church, and this birth has already been mentioned in, this article. God shows no partiality. He chooses all of his children who obey the gospel to be born into his family.

But God's people are not only called by the gospel and chosen by obedience, but they must be faithful to remain in his care and keeping. "Be thou faithful unto death and I will give thee a crown of life," says Jesus. (Rev. 2:10) "But he that endureth unto the end, the same shall be saved." (Matt. 24:13) "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith: Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness." (2 Tim. 4:6-8)

The Extent Of God's Care

Just where and how far does the care of God extend? One sweeping statement concerning God's care for his children is "I will never leave you nor forsake you." (Heb. 13:5) All the wealth of this world is not to be compared to the Lord's presence and help. Money cannot buy this comfort.

But the Lord has not only promised to be with us while we live, he will be with his children in death. A child of God in former years has said: "Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me." (Psalms 23:4) The Lord's care for his children then outlasts life. This care is present in death. A child of God does not die alone. To die then is not so bad when we have the Lord with us. It is not so bad to enter that valley of death when we do not have to enter alone. Loved ones would be willing to go with us, but they can't. The Lord is willing to be our companion in death and he will.

But beyond this the care of God for his children extends. On the other shore he will house and care for his own. Has the sweet singer of Israel not said: "And I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever?" We know as children of God that after the earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, "we have a building of God; a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."