There is nothing like sicknesses and the departure of people you care about to make you think again about what life and death means. A few weeks ago, Nabeel Qureshi, the young, outstanding, dynamic apologist of Ravi Zacharias International Ministry (RZIM) died. His book “Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus” has touched thousands in the Muslim world. Recently married and blessed with a young daughter, he was doing a theological doctorate at Oxford when he was found to have terminal stomach cancer.
When he visited us earlier this year, I had a meal with him and a chance to talk to him about what facing death meant. Was he afraid? No. Was he sad? Definitely. What was he saddest about? That his daughter would grow up without her father. Did he believe God would heal him? He hoped so. Was there any doubt about God’s goodness and who Jesus said He was? None whatsoever. In his last “vlog” on Youtube he ended with the same expectant “see you soon!” in between short breaths.
Why did God take him home at such a young age? I don’t know except that some of the best and most influential in Christian history died young. Jesus did. Like Jim Elliot, Henry Martyn and Sadhu Sundar Singh, Nabeel lived his short life to the full. His bravery and infectious faith inspired me. It was surreal to hear his weekly “vlog” often shared in a matter-of-fact way. He talked about the hopelessness of the prognosis and the slow deterioration of his body in between quips about his daily family life. Yet through all this, his spirit shone through, full of unconquerable hope.
What is the message here for us, young and old? I once heard Dr. Martyn Lloyd Jones say, “A man will only truly know how to live if he knows how to die”. Be certain of your hope. Put your life in His hands and live for Him. Longevity is not guaranteed, but true significance is. Whether we depart earlier or later, our sign-off message is the same: “See you soon!” On this earth, a sad goodbye. On the other side, a glorious hello!
相信世上没事情比病痛或亲人离去，更能让你深思生死的意义。就在几个星期前，Nabeel Qureshi , 一名年轻又出色、活跃于Ravi Zacharias 国际事工（RIZM）的护教辩护士已离世了。他所撰写的著作《在清真寺寻找，十字架下寻見》, ”Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus” , 已打动了诸多穆斯林界群众。他才刚成家不久，神赐福了他们一个女儿。他于牛津大学修读神学博士学位的时候，发现自己患上了末期肠胃癌。
今年年初，我有幸和他一起用餐，谈到了面临死亡的意义。 他害怕吗？并不。他伤心吗？当然。那他最伤心的是什么呢？是他的女儿将会在没有父亲的环境下长大。他相信神会治愈他吗？他非常地希望。他对神的好和耶稣基督口中的祂存有疑心吗？完全没有。他在最后一个YouTube‘短片部落格’中，呼吸急促地说声‘再会’, 一如既往。
为什么神在他那么年轻的时候就把他带走？ 我无法回答，但在基督史上一些具有非凡影响的都年早离去。耶稣基督也是如此。就像 Jim Elliot, Henry Martyn 和 Sadhu Sundar Singh, Nabeel 生命虽短暂，但依然丰盛地活着。他的勇敢及带有感染力的信心给我带来了启发。每星期领听他的‘短片部落格’感觉他以事论事式的分都令我感觉很超凡。他以幽默分享着与家人相处的点滴，但言语中透漏对病情的预报失去盼望及自身健康逐渐恶化的忧虑。 即便如此，他的灵还是闪耀着，充满着战胜的盼望！
这些能为我们（无论男女老少）带来什么样的信息呢？我曾听 Dr.Martyn Lloyd Jones 说道，一个人只有领悟到了死亡的意义，才会懂得如何活着。要有坚定不疑的盼望，将您的生命摆放在祂手中，为祂而活。 长寿是没有保障的，活出真谛才是最重要的。无论我们何时离去，早或迟，在世上登出的信息还是同样的一句: “再会！”在世上的伤心再见但天家另一端将是辉煌地说哈罗！
Philip Lyn 医生牧师