Death Swallowed Up in Victory

Death Swallowed Up in Victory

He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,
    and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.  Isaiah 25:8

A wise, veteran pastor once said, “When you start out, you bury members.  Once you do it long enough, you start burying friends.”  In my first six years as a parish pastor, I conducted six funerals.  In the thirteen years at my next call, I conducted more than 250 funerals for members…and friends.  Death does sting.  It hurts to lose people we know and love, especially since we are powerless to do anything to stop it.

Our gracious God was the one who had the power to do something about the sting of death.  But the way that the Father defeated death was allowing His beloved Son to suffer and die our place.  The Father could have intervened and stopped His Son’s death but that was the way that He could defeat death for all of us.  The Father loved us enough that He was willing to forsake Jesus on the cross and to the tomb to save us.

But death held no dominion over Jesus.  When Jesus rose on that first Easter, He defeated death and its power.  This means that when Christ comes again in glory, death will be swallowed up in victory because death will be no more.  No more tears or mourning or crying or pain.  No more funerals.  This is the hope and assurance when we stand at the graveside of a friend and look forward to the resurrection on the last day when death will be swallowed up in victory for all eternity.  May God fill you with joy and hope as you celebrate our Lord’s resurrection and as we look forward to the eternal celebration that awaits us with all those who have gone before us in faith.

Prayer - Almighty God the Father, through Your only-begotten Son, Jesus Christ, You have overcome death and opened the gate of everlasting life to us. Grant that we, who celebrate with joy the day of our Lord’s resurrection, may be raised from the death of sin by Your life-giving Spirit; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan


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