Job 4:19 - KJV "How much less in them that dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, which are crushed before the moth?"
Ecclesiastes 3:20 - KJV "All go unto one place; all are of the dust,
and all turn to dust again."
Psalms 49:12 - KJV "Nevertheless man being in honour abideth not: he is like the beasts that perish."
Psalms 103:14 - KJV "For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that
we are dust."
What about cremation? This is a question that I get asked hundreds of
every week. Let me answer it, and than share with you some personal
thoughts and observations that I have formulated based on God's Word. I
realize that some of what I may say today will upset you. That is NEVER my
goal. My purpose today is to deal with this very legitimate question, and
than put it in the context of the larger issue of the whole post-death
experience. Ultimately however, I want you to focus on the main issue which
is serving God during our life.
There is absolutely NO Biblical support against cremation. There are no
verses, or Biblical concepts that would in any way make it wrong to be
cremated. It is entirely a personal choice to either be, or not to be,
cremated. The burial or cremation of a dead body has largely been a
societal issue. The reason the Bible does not forbid cremation is because
these bodies we occupy during this life, these clay tablets God made from
the dust of the earth, are simply a temporary "home". The eternal part of
each of us is our soul. THAT is what will never die. THAT is what the
Bible is concerned about. What happens to our bodies once we are dead
has no eternal significance at all. It is our eternal souls God is concerned about.
Our greatest legacy will be left in the lives God uses us to minister to
along our journey. Once God says our work here is finished and calls us home,
we will rejoice in the fact that for eternity, we will be with our Lord.
This body we occupied while we were here will be empty, and eventually as
God decreed, return to the dust it came from. From a practical standpoint,
our personal choice is to not spend $3,000, $4,000, even $10,000 on a
beautiful box.....another $10,000 on a plot of land....another $5,000
on a rock with our name on it....just to bury our useless dead body. We
are actually setting aside the money that we would spend on funeral expenses,
to give to several ministries so that we continue to live on in the lives of those
God will touch through those ministries.
What you choose to do is perfectly fine. Having officiated over several dozen
my years of ministry, I realize that the funeral experience is NOT for the
deceased, but for those friends and family members left behind. The only
way I will ever agree to preach a funeral is if I can share a salvation
message. There is no greater "illustrated sermon", no time a person is more
aware of his or her own mortality than at a funeral. It is THE best time to
share the everlasting hope we have through Christ. My only advice is to
pray over this very personal decision and plan it out early. I have seen
too many cases of families taken advantage of by those in the funeral
industry, many left in debt for years. The death of a saint, one who has a
personal faith in Christ should be a time of celebration. Their work in
this brief journey we call life is over, and they are on to their rewards in
I love you and care about you so much. My overall objective today is to
first answer a question so many ask, and use this as an opportunity to
encourage you that the time to make an impact in your life is TODAY. The
Bible says tomorrow is promised to none of us. Our ultimate purpose in this
life is to serve and glorify Him. That is something we must focus on daily.
When our work here is finished and God calls us home, that physical body you
operate in today will have absolutely no meaning or purpose. However you
choose to dispose of it is a personal decision you make. If you have a
funeral service and are buried, that is fine. If you choose to be cremated
and maybe have some sort of memorial service, that is fine. The critical
issue is what you do with the time God gives you here on earth. The message
of God's Word is to know God in a personal way through faith in His Son
Jesus Christ, serve Him to the best of your ability, and when God says your
work here is over, look forward to eternity with God your Creator!
In His love and service,
Your friend and brother in Christ,