The Necessity of Death
2 Samuel 14:14
For we must needs die, and are as water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again; neither does God respect any person…


1. We "must needs die," because of God's unalterable decree; "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die."

2. Moreover, we "must needs die," because of the diseases to which we are subjected in consequence of sin. Had man stood he never would have known anything of disease.

(1) There are three views which we may profitably take of death. Contemplate it in the pains winch it inflicts. Troops of malignant diseases attend "the king of terrors;" fevers burn, consumptions waste, plagues depopulate, and diseases of every kind attack the human frame.

(2) Contemplate death in the changes which it produces. The withering of the grass, the fading of the flower, the fleeing Of the shadows and the vanishing of the vapour are emblems used by the inspired writers to illustrate and impress upon us the nature of death. Oh! what an awful and indescribable change does it produce!

(3) Contemplate death in the dissolutions which it effects. The body and the soul are closely and intimately united, though we cannot tell how spirit acts upon matter; the psalmist remarks "we are fear-fully and wonderfully made;" but when death comes, he dissolves the mysterious union, and then is brought to pass the saying that is written "The silver cord is loosed and the golden bowl is broken."

3. But let us now come to character; and I remark that the righteous and the wicked "must needs die." The wicked "must needs die," that he may fully prove the truth of God's threatenings. "Because sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily, therefore the heart of the sons of men is fully set in them to do evil." The righteous "must needs die" in order to receive the reward of their doings. "Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God;" the Lord first gives grace, and then crowns it with eternal glory.

II. THE FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE CF THE TEXT. The body, when the spirit tins fled, is compared to "water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again." This language may appear to some to argue against the doctrine of the resurrection; but the Scriptures do not contradict themselves. When water is shed upon the dry and parched earth it cannot be collected again in the same purity and quantity; but "the things which are impossible with men are possible with God." It is written, "Except a grain of wheat fall into the earth and die, it remaineth alone; but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." And as sure as the harvest follows the first fruits, so surely shall the resurrection of the saints to life eternal, and the resurrection of the wicked to everlasting damnation come to pass.

(D. Delaney.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: For we must needs die, and are as water spilt on the ground, which cannot be gathered up again; neither doth God respect any person: yet doth he devise means, that his banished be not expelled from him.

WEB: For we must die, and are as water split on the ground, which can't be gathered up again; neither does God take away life, but devises means, that he who is banished not be an outcast from him.

The King's Son Coming Home from Exile
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