Lesson 262: "Got Tears"
When a heart hardens the ears are the first to go (he who has ears let him hear); then the tears (they cried to you and were saved); then the fear (of the Lord). Tears are the end result of an emotion most usually associated with sadness and its counterpart, happiness. There are other tears; forgotten tears; tears that show an emotional concern for the lost around us. “Blessed are those who mourn” (Matt. 5:4). This mourning in Matthew that Jesus speaks of is a deep sorrow of the heart that is blessed by God. It flows from poverty of spirit from being a Christian. The Greek word used in this passage is mourning for the dead; for passionate lament for one who was loved such as Jacob’s grief for his beloved son that he believed was dead (Gen. 37:34). How much more should we mourn and weep bitter tears for the spiritually dead? There should be urgency for the lost; a deep concern; prayers with passion and tears for the ones slipping into hell-fire as we sit dry-eyed waiting for eternal bliss. We know or have chosen to forget God’s sorrow over a lost world and think since He has everything under control our job is done. One glimpse of hell and reality of the world wide wars and wickedness should bring us to tears and shake us out of our “luke-warmness” that God hates so (Rev. 3:15-16).
I am not suggesting that Christians should wear sack cloth and throw ashes on their heads, walking around daily weeping and moaning. I am, however, suggesting that we take pity on the lost; weep; chastise our soul; and unlike David, pray that the lost and the ones that scorn us might share in salvation (Psalm 60). God is looking for someone to stand in the gap for the lost, lest He destroy them with His fiery anger (Eze. 22:30-31). Are you the one? Jesus asked His disciples why they could not stay awake and pray (Matt. 26:40-41) because the hour was near for Him to die for our sins (Matt. 26:45). The time is near for Him to come again and receive all Christians unto Himself. Are we sleeping? We, today, are hearing about a heaven without hell; salvation without damnation; eternal joy with eternal suffering. Rejoice that your name is written in the Book, but weep that there are many names that are not there (Rev. 20:15). Do not lose the concept of soul-travailing, mourning, pleading, praying-through, weeping and Godly sorrow. With dry eyes we read the mighty exploits of God’s men in the past and it does not disturb us to think we are so far removed from these things. We read them like they were fairy tales and saying that the God of yesterday will be forever but perhaps He is not the same today and the things of the prophets and apostles cannot manifest in our generation. I pray God give us brimming eyes, bursting over the fact of the lost souls that will spend eternity without God. We lay our burdens on God but who cam He lay His burdens on? Can God share His burden for the lost on you (Eze. 22:30-31)?
The psalmist writes that God has put his tears in a bottle and record them in His book (Ps. 56:8). I have yet to find a scripture to say why God keeps these tears or if the psalmist meant only that God knew and remembered all his sufferings. If indeed God does save up tears then I would like to think that He drops them into the eyes of those who have none; pours them out into a heart when He gives us a lost soul to pray for. Perhaps if He re-uses the tears on us that we might praise Him in loud voices, being a testimony to the lost, then it will keep the stones from crying out (Luke 19:40). We know our eyes were meant to produce tears; we know we will have no use for tears in heaven; does it make sense that we should use them here to travail for the lost with weeping? Does it make sense that we should cry out to the lost as did the former prophets (Zech. 1:4 KJV)? Does it make sense that we should weep for a dying generation as Jesus wept for a dying Jerusalem (Luke 19:41)? Jesus rejected Jerusalem because Jerusalem rejected Him. He wept over the city because its people did not understand the significance of what was going on; the city would be totally destroyed (Roman soldiers did this starting in A.D. 70). Ah, to know the compassion of Jesus; to weep for a generation that does not understand!
We repress our tears because we are way too cool to cry; they mess up our make-up; they make us appear weak; people might think that we have a deep dark secret; others think we are fanatic when we pray with tears! Rather than repressing our tears, should we not say with the prophet; “oh, that my head were a spring of water and my eyes a fountain of tears! I would weep day and night for the slain of my people” (Jer. 9:1)? “But if you do not listen, I will weep in secret because of your pride; my eyes will weep bitterly, overflowing with tears” (Jer. 13:17). “Streams of tears flow from my eyes for your Law is not obeyed” (Ps. 119:136). “This is why I weep and my eyes overflow with tears. No one is near to comfort me, no one to restore my spirit. My children are destitute because the enemy has prevailed” (Lam. 1:16). We are the followers of the weeping prophet and like the psalmist we are acquainted with grief for the lost. The prophets, apostles and the Lord Jesus Himself showed compassion and their ministries were bathed in tears. Tearful tenderness is the gift for soul winning power. “During the days of Jesus life on earth, He offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears” (Heb. 5:7); His ministry broke His heart as well as sacrificed His life. Paul’s ministry held tearful tenderness (Acts 20:19), weeping for the many who live as enemies of the Cross of Christ (Phil. 3:18).
We are churches of Laodicea; dry eyed; rich in material things; beautiful buildings in which to worship God; never losing sleep over the lost; shunning the pain of travailing; not sharing God’s heart! Do we sit at the feet of Jesus and weep over our sins (Luke 7:37-38)? Have we wept bitterly because we are not “standing up for Jesus” (Luke 22:62)? Have our hearts ached with sin (Luke 18:13)? Have we sensed an unworthiness (Luke 15:18)? Does the sin of the lost cut into our hearts making us aware of their perishing souls (Acts 2:37)? Christians have no tears! The blunt hard fact is; “many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even with weeping, that they are the enemies of the Cross of Christ” (Phil. 3:18). Can we truly imagine this without tears in our eyes? What will it take to move us? Extending our prayer time? Waiting after praying until God speaks? Revival in the heart and the congregation? Closet prayer? Group prayer? Whatever it takes we should not hesitate to ask God with tears to show us the lost and send us with power and confidence to bring them to Christ! Amen?