Monday, March 30, 2009

Death 2

Next time you are listening to the news or reading the paper, notice the reports about people who have died. "3 Die in Detroit Fire" or "Plane Crash Kills 2" or "Actor Found Dead of Overdose." Tragic ways to die, but since when is death news?
We are told in Scripture that we will all die: "It is appointed unto men to die once..." Heb. 9:27. A popular saying, attributed, I think, to Mark Twain states that the only two certainties of life are death and taxes. Why then, is death news? There is nothing extraordinary about it. The way of death may be tragic or untimely, but certainly not unique or unheard of.
My thinking is that we treat death as surprising because we were not made to die. God's plan for humans did not originally include death. And, I believe we all still carry that knowledge in our souls and so react to death as an intrusion. It is not 'natural' for us, it is deeply and decidedly unnatural. As beings not made for death we know at a deep level that we were meant for life and so cling to life and hope for life even in the face of terrible crises and diseases. God made us to live and to live with Him forever. It is our natural state. Our sin has ruined this life and now death must come, and it is an intrusion and an insult. But, as the miracle of Easter shows us, death is now only a door to the life that we were meant to live.

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