More on Faith and End-of-Life Care

Do American Christians believe that 'Death has been swallowed up in victory'?

Mark Galli points out a study that confirms my own anecdotal evidence through interviews with Christian doctors–particularly those in hospice or working with the elderly: Christians are surprisingly aggressive in attempting to forestall their own death through the use of medical interventions.

This is surprising because the basic belief of the Christian faith is that Jesus Christ died and rose from the grave. And as Paul says in Romans, Christians have the life of the God who rose Jesus from the dead. Because of this death-defeating life, the Christian believes, as the Bible repeats, "Death has been swallowed up in victory. Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?"

This fearlessness toward death, especially as taught by Paul in I Corinthians 15 and given evidence in his life, is not at all apparent in the decision making of many, many Christians (according to the study Mark cited) who use medical technology to fight death.

In research for my book on the Christian art ...

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