Friday, April 19, 2013

Death is Swallowed up in Victory - How Believers Die

So now I've participated in two funerals from Our Savior. One of the great blessings of creation is how our Lord has permitted us to learn more about medicine and curing diseases. At the same time, the medicines that prolong life, in some cases, prolongs our earthly suffering. As much as we try to avoid death, death still happens to everyone.

For the Christian, like with all things in a sinful world, faith in Christ, makes death - life. Christ makes suffering - joy. Jesus makes defeat - victory. Our Savior makes pain - relief.

One of the great tools of The Faith is our hymnody. Lutherans are known as the singing church. The struggle we have in our culture is to maintain the substance of The Faith in the songs of the singing church.

For this reason, it is important that we, as believers, hand down the great gifts the Lord has given to us. Our children, along with the congregation sing so well and we are blessed in the faithfulness that is so apparent in what we sing.

Funerals are an important part of the singing church and the development of our children in The Faith. Maybe for your daily devotions for this month, include the following hymn. Notice the incredible message of victory over sin, death and the devil. The imagery is stunning and bold. We win. Satan loses. We live. Sin dies. Hell crushed. Heaven opens.

At the Lamb's High Feast LSB Hymn 633

1 At the Lamb’s high feast we sing
Praise to our victorious King,
Who has washed us in the tide
Flowing from His pierc├Ęd side.

2 Praise we Him, whose love divine Gives His sacred blood for wine,
Gives His body for the feast—
Christ the victim, Christ the priest.

3 Where the paschal blood is poured,
Death’s dread angel sheathes the sword; Israel’s hosts triumphant go
Through the wave that drowns the foe.

4 Praise we Christ, whose blood was shed,
Paschal victim, paschal bread;
With sincerity and love
Eat we manna from above.

5 Mighty Victim from the sky,
Hell’s fierce pow’rs beneath You lie;
You have conquered in the fight,
You have brought us life and light.

6 Now no more can death appall,
Now no more the grave enthrall;
You have opened paradise,
And Your saints in You shall rise.

Believers pass through the door of death, surrounded by angels and archangels, trusting in the victory of Christ, and persevere in the blood of the Lamb until the doors of paradise burst open to receive us.

1 comment:

  1. Amen. When my grandma was battling with cancer medicines were doing nothing. After two rounds of chemo it came back stronger than ever a third time. The doctor wanted to try some experimental medicine, but my grandma was tired, worn out, and done. She was ready to see her Lord. My uncle had a hard time with this. He thought that by not making her try the new medicine they were killing her and had to struggle with grandma's choice of not receiving treatment. She died shortly after and her pain and suffering were left behind in this world until Christ's return and ressurection with our new, perfect bodies.

    Though she passed away last summer, I know she lives with the Lord and I cannot wait to join her sitting before the throne of God without a care in the world basking in His glory and holiness. Pure intimacy with God, Our Savior. I will tell you that the first time I had participated in communion after her passing my eyes were oppened to what was really going on. I was there, at Christ's table, not only with my grandma but also with the whole communion of saints: those who have gone before, those here now, and even those who have yet to arrive! All present in communion partaking of the heavenly food! If that's not a Christian bond, I don't know what is! We are so blessed to be part of this sweet comunion of Christ.