Perspectives On Suffering:Sarah Edwards.

When Sarah Edwards received word that her husband,Jonathan Edwards,had died at age 54 from a small pox inoculation one month after becoming President of Princeton College in 1758,she picked up her pen and wrote to her daughter Esther whose husband Aaron Burr had died 6 months earlier.

My very dear child,what shall I say!A holy and good God has covered us with a dark cloud.O that we may kiss the rod and lay our hands upon our mouths!The Lord has done it.He has made us adore his goodness,that we had with(your father)for so long.But my God lives;and he has my heart.O what a legacy my husband,and your father,has left us.We are all given to God;and there I am,and love to be.

Your affectionate mother,Sarah Edwards,From the book,(Marriage to a difficult man,by Elizabeth Dodds,p.196)

Explore posts in the same categories: Faith., Grieving for dummies, How to grieve., Jay Poore

4 Comments on “Perspectives On Suffering:Sarah Edwards.”

  1. dwight easler Says:


    A few weeks ago a young lady in our church was informed that her 55 year old father had just been killed by a bee as he was cutting grass. He was stung and before he could reach the house he went into shock and cardiac arrest. Her world has been shaken and she has told me that she questioned why God would do this. I assisted in the funeral and spoke from Luke 13:1-3 about death as God’s divine limit upon our lives. How death is deliverance for the believer from a cruel world of suffering and heartache and it is judgment upon those who are unbelieving. For more on this read (How Long O Lord: Reflections on Suffering and Evil by DA Carson) After I spoke another dear pastor stood up and said, “We cannot say that ______ death was God’s will. God did not want him to die anymore than we did.” He then went on to explain and justify God’s inabillity to act. She later came to me confused and seeking answers to these seemingly contradictory funeral sermons. This situation has shaken me and caused me to pay more attention about what we say at funerals. Theology good or bad can shape how someone grieves.

    I appreciate what you have written and I am going to pass it on to her. Maybe she can find in these words some comfort and assurance in Christ.

  2. Dwight,
    I participated in a funeral a few weeks ago for a lady in our church who was 90.She had a radient testimony for our Lord and had seved Him faithfully for many years.One Pastor who had a part in the funeral was desperate to find out”when”she was saved.He could not find the answer.When he spoke he gave the date of her physical birth but said he did not know when she was “saved.”
    Several months ago another pastor gave the “Faith”presentation 4or 5 times at a funeral.I have vowed never to have a part in a funeral with him again.I’m sorry for the added grief your friend has because of the ignorance of another “Red-neck”preacher.

  3. Quinn Hooks Says:

    I have done a funeral with a pastor who gave an incoherent Gospel presentation that left people shaking their heads in disbelief. He even had to use props to do this!

  4. Greg Says:

    I believe that funerals are wonderful places to share the gospel. I have done so 5 times. Limited experience guys. But harping and or giving a weak God who just couldn’t keep someone alive as He wished is awful. Piper has a great illustration of the comfort of God’s omnipotence and omniscience in the face of “open theism.” A lady in his church is married to a missionary who has been in sin and under discipline for over a decade. He has not returned to her and she has not divorced him. It is a heart wrenching situation. She told Dr. Piper to never give her a God who didn’t know about what was in her husbands heart or the sin that destroyed their ministry and marriage.

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