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This writing comes out of the recent death of my grandfather and the goal of this is simply to cause hearts and minds to worship at the beauty of truth.
Death is one of the fiercest beasts we may encounter in life. It is ugly. And though we may take great measures to avoid thinking about it or ignore it all together, death remains as a scar of sin upon the earth (Rom. 5). It’s no wonder we avoid it, ignore it, disdain it. The face of death is not pleasant because it shows us the reality, and really the absolute terror, of our own sin. It is like a festering wound that we cannot view without wincing or turning away with a rather sick stomach.
My fear is that we may gloss over the terrible, incredible ugliness of death and rob the truth of its glory. And what is glorious about death? Well, when we understand how terrible death is, we see Christ’s glory more clearly.
In death, we see that Jesus is the redeemer and king. Ultimately, every power, every trouble, every person, every circumstance, every thing, has no choice but to bow in submission to The King of Kings and Lord of Lords. In the light of Christ, death is absolutely obliterated. 1 Corinthians 15:55-57 says,
“’Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?’
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
One of the ugliest things that sin has to offer has been rendered powerless because of Jesus Christ. When we understand the deepness of the darkness of death, we get a greater glimpse of how glorious Jesus is to overcome it. Jesus has given us hope beyond death to the point that Spurgeon says, “Death to the wicked is the king of terrors. Death to the saint is the end of terrors, the commencement of glory.” Yet, no words could ever fully capture the beauty of the truth. Jesus has overturned death to a point that it brings joy from mourning, beauty from ugliness and glory from despair! God, help us to see your beauty more clearly!
But how does this impact our worship? First and foremost, it doesn’t mean we look at death and are immediately filled with joy. Death is still awful, and it is foolish to say that we should no longer weep or hurt because of it. Death, especially the death of an unbeliever is horrific. But as we experience that grief and sorrow, we can turn our eyes to Jesus and live in the light of the one who has conquered death.
We worship with hope. The future may be uncertain, but we have a sure hope that has conquered death. As a Christian, you have an ultimate hope of life and victory in Jesus Christ.
Death also reminds us that we worship with urgency. We live in a world that needs to hear of Christ’s victory so they may share in it. We worship with convinced hearts and loud voices, so the world may hear of the one who has conquered death; so that it may come to know him.
We worship with awe. Christ resurrects what was spiritually and physically dead. As a response to that, our worship should be filled with absolute awe and wonder. The incredible power of Jesus Christ has done what no one else can!
My hope is that this causes you to rejoice in the truth and that it refreshes your view of Jesus Christ. Our hearts can be encouraged and awe-inspired because even death bows its knee to King Jesus.