Death has been swallowed up in victory. — 1 Corinthians 15:54 NIV
Barring the return of Christ, you will have one final moment… a last gasp, a final pulse. Your lungs will empty, and your blood will still. What will you be after you die? Answers vary, but Christianity posits a startling idea: “Death has been swallowed up in victory” (1 Corinthians 15:54 NIV).
The cemetery is less a place of loss and more a place of gain. The dead in Christ are to be mourned, for sure. But they are also to be envied. Funeral dirges are understandable, but a trumpet blast would be equally appropriate.
People of the Promise hold on to the unshakable hope that hinges on the resurrection of Christ. The Christian hope depends entirely upon the assumption that Jesus Christ died a physical death, vacated an actual grave, and ascended into Heaven where He, at this moment, reigns as head of the Church.
The resurrection changed everything. And it proves this promise of God: He will reclaim His creation. He is a God of restoration, not destruction. He is a God of renewal, redemption, regeneration, resurrection. God loves to redo and restore.
Let this hope for tomorrow bring strength to today. Your finest moment will be your final moment! Everyone else may say otherwise, that death is to be avoided, postponed, and ignored. But they do not have what you have. You have a promise from the living God. Your death will be swallowed up in victory! Jesus Christ rose from the dead, not just to show you His power, but to reveal your path. He will lead you through the valley of death.
Promises from God
Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. — Psalm 51:12
The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; He has risen, just as He said. Come and see the place where He lay.” — Matthew 28:5-6 NIV
So we do not give up. Our physical body is becoming older and weaker, but our spirit inside us is made new every day. We have small troubles for a while now, but they are helping us gain an eternal glory that is much greater than the troubles. We set our eyes not on what we see but on what we cannot see. What we see will last only a short time, but what we cannot see will last forever. — 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NCV
In keeping with His promise we are looking forward to a new Heaven and a new earth, where righteousness dwells. — 2 Peter 3:13 NIV
Praying God’s Promises
Lord, thank You for the promise of a temporary tomb. Your power has no limits. You have conquered death. You have promised to make all things new. You are the God of restoration and redemption and regeneration. You are the God of resurrection. In my day-to-day life it can be difficult for me to maintain an eternal perspective. Sometimes I may get bogged down in the worries of today and forget that the best is yet to come. Restore in me the joy of my salvation, God. Renew my mind and my heart so that I will have an eternal perspective of all the worries of my day. They are nothing compared to spending eternity with You. And because of your promise of resurrection, I do not have to fear death. I will live in faith, knowing that in Jesus, death has been swallowed up in victory. Amen.
I will entrust my death to the Lord of life. I will live with eternity in mind, knowing the best is yet to come. I will not fear death, but instead, I will believe the promise that death has been swallowed up in victory.
Excerpted with permission from Praying the Promises by Max Lucado, copyright Max Lucado
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Jesus’ life told this story so well. Death being temporary. Do you look at death as a gift? Do you look at it as grace? We would love to hear from you. So, come share your thoughts on our blog!