When you come to creep into your hole
(Thomas Boston, "Death")
"For I know that you will bring me to death, and to the house appointed for all living." Job 30:23
Behold the vanity of the world, and of all those things in it, which men so much value and esteem; and therefore set their hearts upon.
The rich and the poor are equally intent upon this fleeting world — they bow the knee to it, yet it is but a clay god. They court the bulky vanity, and run eagerly to catch this shadow.
The rich man is hugged to death in the world's embraces; while the poor man wearies himself in the fruitless pursuit for the world.
But look into the grave, O man! Consider and be wise! Listen to the doctrine of death; and learn, that, hold as hard as you can, you shall be forced to let go your hold of the world at length! "He will take nothing with him when he dies" Psalm 49:17
Though you load yourself with the fruits of this earth — yet all shall fall off when you come to creep into your hole — the house, under ground, appointed for all living. When death comes, you must bid an eternal farewell to all your worldly enjoyments.
If you lie down on the grass, and stretch yourself at full length, and observe the print of your body when you rise — you may see how much of this earth will fall to your share at last. It may be that you shall get a coffin and a shroud — but you are not sure of that; many who have had abundance of wealth, yet have not had this much when they took up their new house in the land of silence.
It was a sobering lesson, which Saladin, when dying, gave to his soldiers. He called for his standard bearer, and ordered him to take his shroud upon a pole, and go out to the camp with it, and declare that of all his conquests, victories, and triumphs — he had nothing now left him, but that piece of linen to wrap his body in for burial.
This world is a false friend, who leaves a man in time of greatest need, and flees from him when he has most to do. When you are lying on a deathbed, all your friends and relations cannot rescue you; all your substance cannot ransom you, nor procure you a reprieve for one day; no, not for one hour!
"Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart." Job 1:21