Saturday, 19 January 2019

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Blogs > Facing Death

Facing Death

One moment they’re breathing, and the next moment they’re not.  

If you have ever been at the bedside of someone who has just died, you know what I’m talking about.

Americans don’t quite know what to do with death.  Hollywood glorifies it.  Violence, gore, and killing remain as popular as ever on the big screen.  And yet, when it comes to real life, it can be an entirely different story.  People opt for “Celebrations of Life” instead of old-fashioned funerals.  Even with a casket or urn right in front of us, we can’t seem to face death.   We are even afraid to speak its name.

In real life it seems that death is something you never quite get used to. I was reminded of this several years ago.  We were about to hold a funeral at church.  I was talking to one of the funeral home directors.  I hadn’t met this particular director before.  As we got acquainted, the man explained that normally he didn’t “do” funerals.  Instead, he had a different job.  It was his job to go and collect the body and bring it back to the mortuary.  The director explained that he had picked up thousands of corpses during his career.   I then made an innocent but foolish comment, “You must be used to it by now.”  The director looked at me before speaking. “You never get used to it.”

Today is Good Friday.  There is a danger for long-time Christians today.  The danger is that we get used to it.  We get used to seeing Jesus die before our eyes. 

Dying was not easy for Jesus.  In the book of Hebrews we read:   “During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, He offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the One who could save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverent submission.  Although He was a son, He learned obedience from what He suffered and, once made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey Him”.

Jesus faced death for us.  He shared in our humanity "so that by His death He might destroy Him who holds the power of death—that is, the devil—and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death” (Hebrews 2:14-15).

Today is Good Friday.  Today we recall the old, old story of Jesus and His cross.

“Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death” (Psalm 68:20).  



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