Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. Psalm 116:15
With the Lord of the Rings film trilogy, the word precious gained new frequency in cultural conversation. “Precious” was the name given by the diabolical creature, Gollum, to a powerful and malevolent golden ring. The hobbit, Frodo Baggins, pursued a perilous crusade to see the ring destroyed. But the evil Gollum opposed Frodo’s every effort, seeking to gain the ring’s magical powers for himself.
Precious appears in Scripture more than seventy times, always referring to things of value. An even deeper meaning is attached to “precious” in Psalm 116:15 referring to the death of God’s people. In this case, precious doesn’t mean desirable—but it does mean valuable. God doesn’t desire for His people to die, especially in difficult circumstances as suggested in Psalm 116. Instead, the death of God’s people is safeguarded, watched over, protected, and secured. Much as we safeguard something highly valuable, so God safeguards His people when they die. As Jesus protected His disciples in life (John 17:12), so God protects them in death.
Those in Christ should never fear death. The love of God continues from temporal life through to eternal life.
The church is the only society in the world that never loses any of its members, even by death. John Blanchard