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Does The Bible Say Anything About Cremation

Christian Views On Cremation

BT Daily: Does the Bible Say Anything About Cremation?

Christians give a high priority to the disposal of a body and have a great fear of making the wrong choice. Unfortunately, there is no precise instruction as to the right or wrong decision.

However, although Jesus did not give definitive answers, He did make reference to the disposal of the body. There is a compelling story that may ease your mind, which includes words spoken by Jesus in Luke 9:59-60

He said to another man, Follow me. But the man replied, Lord, first let me go and bury my father. Jesus said to him, Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.

This may seem to be a cold and harsh response, but Jesus was saying that his followers should give their full attention to Him and the disposal of the dead should not be a high priority.

Many Christians believe that it is not our physical bodies that will dwell in the house of the Lord.

List Of Five Reasons People Choose Cremation

Lately, more Christians are becoming open to the idea of cremation and are embracing this means of disposing of the bodies of their loved ones for a number of reasons.

  • Some have felt they cannot afford the expense of a traditional funeral, and choose cremation because of the expenses involved in burial. Funeral homes price cremation cheaper than the traditional casket and burial costs and they recommend this method if expenses are a concern, so bereaved people just go that way.
  • Some have become environmentalists and are concerned about the lack of burial plots as space has become less available in cemeteries in certain locations.
  • Some feel there are fewer decisions that need to be made, so cremation is easier.
  • Some do not want the issue and cost of transportation when the body is away from home.
  • Some romanticize saving the ashes of their loved one to be distributed in some emotional setting getting their cues from some movie they have seen
  • Biblical Perspective On Cremation

    You may do well to investigate why your family doesn’t approve of your cremation choice. Perhaps they consider cremation as not Biblical. However, as we have seen, cremation is never a Biblical issue. Here are some other concerns of Christians about cremation.

    1. Perhaps they are worried that when Jesus returns at the Rapture and the bodies of long-dead Christians are resurrected and transformed into spiritual bodies that you wont have a body to resurrect. Frankly, since the first century, most bodies are now dust anyway. Since God is big enough to produce a world-wide resurrection, He certainly can make a spiritual body from only a speck of dust — or less.

    2. Perhaps your family wants you in a casket-filled grave so they can have a place for remembering you and your lives together. This desire is natural and normal.

    Recently, I’ve observed families foregoing the expensive caskets and burial plots by choosing cremation. They then purchase a small cemetery plot in which to bury the ashes. Others scatter the ashes over a prearranged place meaningful to the deceased. Some save a few ashes in a small locket as a token reminder of their loved one. Some ashes reside in burial urns over fireplace mantles.

    With all that being said, remember that your body is still your body. Discuss openly with your family that you want to dispose of your body in the way most comfortable to you. In your case, that is cremation.

    Well, B, I hope this helps. Have a great talk with your family.

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    Jesus Christ Was Entombed In A Sepulchre

    When Jesus Christ died he was not buried in a typical manner. He was entombed in a stone sepulchre . By no means does this mean that everyone who is a follower of Christ must also be entombed in a stone sepulcher in the same way at death.

    Entombment was just the situation available at the time of Christs death and the tradition of His family.

    Cremation In The Bible

    R.C. Sproul: Does the Bible Say Anything About Cremation?

    So, what does the Bible say about cremation? It may surprise you that the Bible contains no specific direction on the practice of cremation. However, there are instances where cremation is mentioned.

    Having a proper burial for your recently departed was held with great importance during Biblical times. Most of us are aware of the great lengths ancient Egyptians went through to preserve the dead for their eternal journey, but the ancient Hebrews also took great care in preparing their dead for burial, as evident in John 19:39. In most cases, Jewish families buried their dead in caves and tombs when possible.

    The practice of cremation is found throughout the Bible. The first time cremation is referenced as a burial practice is Samuel 1:31:

    âWhen the people of Jabesh Gilead heard what the Philistines had done to Saul, 12 all their valiant men marched through the night to Beth Shan. They took down the bodies of Saul and his sons from the wall of Beth Shan and went to Jabesh, where they burned them. 13 Then they took their bones and buried them under a tamarisk tree at Jabesh, and they fasted seven days.â

    Saul and his sons were cremated because burial was not possible. While ancient Hebrews and Egyptians traditionally buried their dead in tombs of some form, cremation was also an option when necessary.

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    Cremation And The Catholic Church

    What does the Catholic Church say about cremation?

    For much of its history, the Catholic Church banned cremation for Catholics. Catholics were to believe that man, created in the likeness of God, could not experience resurrection at the end of time unless their bodies were intact. Cremation was also banned to counter Roman pagan beliefs, which involved burning deceased bodies.

    But, along with other major changes in the Catholic Church, cremation was approved for use in 1963, and in 1997, allowed for cremated remains to be a part of the funeral mass, if these remains are treated with the same reverence as a body.

    In todays Catholic practice, the body is a holy temple, and a persons soul will rise at the end of time if the body becomes cremains.

    The Church earnestly recommends that the pious custom of burying the bodies of the deceased be observed nevertheless, the Church does not prohibit cremation unless it was chosen for reasons contrary to Christian doctrine.

    Code of Canon Law Book IV Function of the Church Liber IV. De Ecclesiae munere sanctificandi https://www.vatican.va/archive/cod-iuris-canonici/eng/documents/cic_lib4-cann1166-1190_en.html

    The acceptance of cremation within the Catholic Church has given Catholics the option of a more affordable, yet still dignified and holy, alternative to burial.

    Should Christians Be Cremated

    The Bible doesnt give any specific instructions about cremation. Although there are instances in the Old Testament where people are burned to death and bones are burned , these are not examples of cremation.

    Interestingly, 2 Kings 23:16-20 states that burning human bones on an altar was a desecration of the altar. However, it is not in the Old Testament that a cremated body of a human being should be burned or cursed.

    Although cremation was common in biblical times, it was not practiced widely by New Testament believers or the Israelites. According to the Bible, burial was common in Bible cultures. It could be done in a cave, a grave, or in the ground. Although burial was a common practice, it is not the norm.

    The Bible does not recommend burial as the only acceptable method of disposing of a body.

    Can a Christian consider cremation? There is no specific commandment against cremation. Some Christians object to cremation because it doesnt recognize that God will one day resurrect our bodies and reunite them with our soul and spirit.

    1 Corinthians 15:3558 But, just because a body is cremated doesnt make it more difficult for God to resurrect that corpse.

    Christians who died over a thousand years ago are now completely dust. God will still be able to raise their bodies. God created them He will not have any difficulty in resurrecting them.

    Cremation is nothing more than expedites the process of turning a persons body into dust. God can also raise a person.

    Read Also: Old Testament Stories In Chronological Order

    What Does The Bible Say

    The bible does not outrightly approve or go against the idea of cremation if anything, the idea further strengthens the notion that from dust, we have come, and to it, we shall return. But in our quest and furtherance to understand the word of God, we sometimes tend to overthink things and begin to question a thing or two about Him .

    As highlighted above, we have grown to know in modern Christianity that cremation was a disposition reserved for the ills and societal rejects, hence the burning of witches and many more who have been convicted of certain evil, whereas that does not offer any validation as to why saints should not take it. There was no instance in the Bible where God frowned against the idea, for example, in the case of Saul and his sons. Asides from that, if the occasion warrants it be done, it can also be done anywhere and for anyone who chooses that way.

    In addition to this, many also feel that cremation would hinder the resurrection power when Jesus would come for his beloved and the grave would open up for the dead to rise. He that breathes life into a sculpture made of dust, is it too big for him to raise such a soul from the dust again? Besides, he is not coming for the body, but the soul. We were briefly shown the extent and not the peak of his power when he said in Ezekiel 37:7 that as Elijah prophesied as he was commanded, there was a noise and rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone.

    Ask Pastor Adrienne: Cremation: Is It A Sin

    Bible Study – Cremation in the Bible What does the Bible say

    Q: Dear Pastor,

    Is cremation a sin? How will the cremated-dead be able to rise when Jesus comes?

    A: In the Bible, cremation is not labeled a sinful practice. Frankly, the topic is not dealt with at all in terms of the detailed lists of instructions for living and dying set forth by almighty God in the Old and New testaments. The short answer to your question appears to be no, cremation is not a sin.

    That said, the biblical recordings of funerals explain that Gods people were laid to rest in tombs usually a hewn rock of some sort with a stone seal. Bodies of loved ones were wrapped or covered in cloth, scented with herbs their corpses left undisturbed in their caves to return to dust in a natural state.

    Cremation, the burning of the corpse, was a custom only practiced by numerous pagan religions in ancient times: the corpse was placed upon towering funeral pyres and set ablaze. Supposedly the essence of the deceased was sent to the afterlife through the smoke of their remains. Some biblical references of burning a person with fire seem to suggest the type of life they lived – the enemies of God and Gods laws were promptly cremated as a form of capital punishment.

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    Giving Up Sugar Tasting God’s Goodness

    As a latchkey kid, Wendy Speake turned to sugar for comfort. Every Friday, she would pedal to the candy show and use her allowance to fill her bag with candy. And one day, when she was older and a mom of three young boys, she came to realize that she was still pedaling away from her stress and using sugar as comfort, instead of turning to Jesus. She was joyless, worn out, tired, and in need of a change. In this interview, Wendy will challenge Christians to take 40 days to focus on fasting from something they turn to instead of Jesus for comfort. She invited people to break free from a dependence on sugar and taste the goodness of God.

    Can God Resurrect A Cremated Body

    Some people may be concerned about a cremated body and how it will be resurrected in the future.

    Well, this should not be a source of concern for Christians.


    Because God can resurrect a cremated body. God is the Almighty who is not limited to resurrecting buried bodies. He can do whatever He pleases and certainly, He can resurrect bodies that have been burned.

    We must also remember how some saints were burned at the stake. Some were fed to the lions while others were sawn in two. Some were decapitated and impaled. Some were not even given a proper burial.

    Would you say that these saints have lost their chance of being part of Gods kingdom simply because of the manner of their death? Does this mean that God will not resurrect them simply because they were not buried properly?

    Of course, the answer is no.

    Moreover, even if you bury a dead body, the body would still decay and decompose, eventually, leaving bones and other hard materials. This is the same thing that happens to some extent with cremation. Cremation simply hastens the process of decomposition.

    Moreover, even the bodies of the saints in the past would have already been dust after thousands of years being on the ground. So, in the final analysis, theres really no difference between burial and cremation in terms of what would become of the corpse.

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    Benefits Of Cremation Today

    Cremation has been a burial alternative throughout history and is more of a philosophical and cultural issue, rather than a biblical one. While a few religions, such as Islam and Orthodox Judaism reject cremation, others have loosened their restrictions, and regard cremation as a spiritually sound process.

    Todays cremation services take into account the desires of both the deceased and the living and offer enough flexibility to provide for appropriate closure, grieving, and prayer.

    Cremation costs less and uses fewer materials than a burial. Its an ecologically sound method of dealing with remains that respect the importance of the human body, as well as the care of the earth.

    Because we live in a transient society, more people are dying away from home, and the cost to transport a body can be prohibitive. For this reason, many families choose to have a direct cremation conducted at the place of death and then arrange to ship or carry the cremains back homean even more affordable option.

    What Does The Bible Say About Keeping Ashes

    BT Daily: Does the Bible Say Anything About Cremation?
    Directly nothing, and if anything, I think there are more verses of scripture that lead against the argument of being unclean due to association with cremains. I personally believe that God is more concerned about the suffering and mourning of the living that are in proximity to those cremains.
    I have been making urns for several years now and in that time I have worked with many families that are looking for cremation vessels due to tragedy, suicide, cancer, other sickness, etc. There are lots of situations where someone did not live a long pleasant life, pass peacibly, and left their loved ones in a relative state of peace.
    I contemplate Isiah 58 a lot as I think that it is one of the clearest places in scripture in revealing the heart of God.
    If you look into it dont get hung up on the fasting title, rather examine what God is looking for. Loosen the chains of injustice and oppression, break every yoke, the physical as well as the emotional ones. From what Ive observed, it is not uncommon for the living to be bound in emotional chains. Especially so when considering death of a loved one.
    I have wondered how often, the mother who is purchasing an urn for her daughter that committed suicide, is feeling those chains of oppression and depression. In this case this mother contacted me many years after her daughter passed. She was just then at a place where she could face dealing with this situation.

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    What Does The Bible Say Common Questions About Being Cremated

    Is being cremated a sin?

    There is no place in Scripture, which signifies that cremation is inappropriate.

    If God did consider it to be a sin, he would have denounced it as He did with other imprudent religious customs.

    Does cremation interfere with the resurrection?

    There is a great deal of situations where the human body is destroyed every day.

    Examples include firefighters, soldiers whose bodies are destroyed in the line of duty, people who are lost at sea, or bodies that are burned due to contagious diseases.

    A compelling response to that question is: even when the body is buried whole, it still decays eventually.

    Christians believe that all things are possible with God. Therefore, the fact that a body has been cremated would not prevent Him from resurrecting us.

    Christians that died hundreds of years ago are certainly turned into dust by now. Would that preclude them from resurrection?

    Ecclesiastes 12:7 , the dust returns to the ground it came from and the spirit returns to God who gave it.

    Will you go to heaven if cremated?

    Some people are concerned that if there is not a whole body, then the resurrection will not be possible.

    That would be improbable, no matter what method you choose for death.

    Wouldnt your belief in God and the way you live your life determine if you go the heaven?

    Where in the Bible is cremation mentioned?

    The Bible does not make reference directly to cremation.

    You can find others under the Cremation Bible verses: King James Version section.

    What Does The Bible Say About Cremation Is It A Sin

    What does the Bible say about cremation? There are many topics about the Christian faith that Christians are unsure of, and one of them is the issue of cremation. While some claim that the burning of a dead body is disrespectful to the human body that was created in the image and likeness of God, others argue that there is no specific verse in the Bible prohibiting cremation. Is cremation bad for the soul? Read on to get an answer.

    Cremation can be defined as a method of the final disposition of a dead body through burning. Lauded for its cheapness as compared to burials, the process is one that has elicited numerous debates in Christian circles. Here is what we know about cremation in the Bible.

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