And the last enemy to be destroyed is death.

1 Corinthians 15:26

“And the last enemy to be destroyed is death.” (1 Corinthians 15:26)

Joseph Bayly was a Pastor and author with amazing insight and sensitivity in ministering to people who were dying, experiencing bereavement, and facing the worst of all losses. In his book, The View from a Hearse, he tackles the issues we are confronted with when death comes knocking at the door, subjects we rarely, if ever, talk about.

Bayly had a unique perspective on death because he and his wife lost three sons at very young ages. Following the death of his five year old to leukemia, he had the opportunity to speak with a young mother whose son was battling the same disease. Bayly spoke of his hope of seeing his son again, to which the woman responded, “You look like a rational person. How can you possibly believe that?”

Death has been described as the “ultimate statistic” meaning that it always scores 100%. In other words, we are all going to die.

In the light of such a sobering truth, is there any possibility at all, of having hope when facing death?

Paul certainly believed so, and as we have seen, his faith and hope were grounded on the physical resurrection of Jesus from the dead. A time is coming when death will be rendered inactive – its effects will be completely abolished – because Jesus defeated death when He rose from the dead.

The Christian pastor and poet, John Donne, expressed the defeat of death powerfully when he wrote:

Death be not proud

though some have called thee

mighty and dreadful

for thou art not so.

One short sleep past

we wake eternally

and death shall be no more.

Death, thou shalt die.

Despite his overwhelming grief, Joseph Bayly, like millions of other Christians, had hope in the face of death and he described his basis for it in words very similar to the Apostle Paul’s:

“I believe in the resurrection of the dead because God has promised it and God is God. But most of all, because He raised up Jesus Christ, His Son, Who died, from the grave.”

Death will die because God has surely promised it!

For further reflection: Revelation 21:1-5.

Joseph Bayly was a Pastor and author with amazing insight and sensitivity in ministering to people who were dying, experiencing bereavement, and facing the worst of all losses. In his book, The View from a Hearse, he tackles the issues we are confronted with when death comes knocking at the door, subjects we rarely, if ever, talk about.

Bayly had a unique perspective on death because he and his wife lost three sons at very young ages. Following the death of his five year old to leukemia, he had the opportunity to speak with a young mother whose son was battling the same disease. Bayly spoke of his hope of seeing his son again, to which the woman responded, “You look like a rational person. How can you possibly believe that?”

Death has been described as the “ultimate statistic” meaning that it always scores 100%. In other words, we are all going to die.

In the light of such a sobering truth, is there any possibility at all, of having hope when facing death?

Paul certainly believed so, and as we have seen, his faith and hope were grounded on the physical resurrection of Jesus from the dead. A time is coming when death will be rendered inactive – its effects will be completely abolished – because Jesus defeated death when He rose from the dead.

The Christian pastor and poet, John Donne, expressed the defeat of death powerfully when he wrote:

Death be not proud

though some have called thee

mighty and dreadful

for thou art not so.

One short sleep past

we wake eternally

and death shall be no more.

Death, thou shalt die.

Despite his overwhelming grief, Joseph Bayly, like millions of other Christians, had hope in the face of death and he described his basis for it in words very similar to the Apostle Paul’s:

“I believe in the resurrection of the dead because God has promised it and God is God. But most of all, because He raised up Jesus Christ, His Son, Who died, from the grave.”

Death will die because God has surely promised it!

For further reflection: Revelation 21:1-5.