Death Is in the Details
As Christians, death should not scare us. The Bible does not shy away from depictions of death, most certainly not from depictions of the death of our Savior. Isaiah 53 reminds us that the death of our Savior was no more sanitized than the death of the lives lost that day at Sandy Hook. And if we turn our eyes away from his death, in favor of something more "clean," we miss the point of it all.
When Lazarus died Jesus went to him even when he was warned that the smell of his dead friend's body would be overpowering (John 11:38-40). Not even a decomposing body could deter him because he knew that he had power over death. As those who trust in this Christ who has victory over death, we owe it to the grieving not to run from death but to run towards it with them, to look death in the face and walk with them in their pain. But also to acknowledge, like Jesus did, that for those who are in Christ that this death does not have the final word (John 11:4).
Not only did Jesus choose to face the death of his friend, but he willing took on flesh in order to defeat death and sin. Jesus became a human being who could die so that little ones, like Noah Pozner, would one day be whole and new—and unstained by the atrocities that ripped them from this world.
As Christians we can look at death and refuse to turn our faces away because we know the One who conquered death by his own and is coming again to make all things new (Rev. 21:5). We owe it to grieving families to enter their pain and hear their stories.
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