Death & Dying

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“Watchman! Watchman! What of the night?
Watchman! What of the night?”
The morning comes, always comes
But comes through the darkest night! […]

Marco Barone
Monday, May 1st 2023

It was my turn to preach in chapel. I was given John 11:1–44 at the beginning of the semester, and since, in God’s providence, it was just two days after my father finally died after a long year of tremendous suffering, we held a memorial service in conjunction with chapel that day. I had long […]

Michael S. Horton
Saturday, September 1st 2018

Late last year, Washington D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser signed into law the Death with Dignity Act of 2016. It permits D.C. residents who suffer from a terminal disease with a life expectancy of less than six months (and who do not have a psychiatric diagnosis of depression) to request and receive a prescription of lethal […]

Allen H. Roberts II
Thursday, March 1st 2018

There’s no way I can follow my brother in eulogizing my father, so I’m not going to try. I’m not going to speak as a son on the passing of my father. I do want to tell one story about my dad, but before I get to that let me tell you what I want […]

Brian J. Lee
Friday, June 30th 2017

Death, dogma, and discourse might not go together at first glance. Death and dogma perhaps—as John Henry Newman wrote, “Many a man will live and die upon a dogma”—but that makes discourse the third wheel. How is discourse—personal exchange—related to death and dogma? My experience has shown me that discourse is actually the beating heart […]

Pierce Taylor Hibbs
Wednesday, March 1st 2017

Near-death experience stories are neither to be discounted as total fabrication nor recalibrated as a final apologetic for the Christian case for heaven. The little-known secret—to those who have studied the matter and the numerous who have not—is that near-death experience stories have been around as long as humans have been telling stories. Once while […]

Scott McKnight
Wednesday, August 31st 2016

Ten acres of refrigerated rural soil,Thickly frosted in Easter's pre-dawn;Subterranean saints, quilted in earth,Smile warmly at the band of believers,Huddled above to catcall verses of victory,Into the mocking mien of chiseled stones;The rocky trophies of mortality's coup,North, south, west, and east of Eden. Wizened hags, pimpled teens, snotty-nosed kids,All dust to dust, prey of the […]

Chad Bird
Saturday, February 28th 2015

In times of suffering, we sometimes cry out, "Why me?" More often, though, our cry is provoked by tragedies that happen to others’loved ones and even those in distant countries who are suddenly wiped out in devastating circumstances. We mourn the death of parents and grandparents, but the death of a child or the destruction […]

Michael S. Horton
Friday, February 28th 2014

Editor’s Note: A few years ago, Michael Horton was asked to deliver the funeral message for Don, a long-time Christian friend who—having encountered a number of family, career, and health difficulties that led to a deep depression—committed suicide. Being concerned to avoid speculation about questions that cannot be answered, while affirming Scripture’s answers to our […]

Michael S. Horton
Friday, February 28th 2014

On both sides of the Atlantic, the last few years have been marked by celebrity funerals. In the recent passing of Whitney Houston’and before that the English reality TV star Jade Goody, the king of pop Michael Jackson, and the Irish pop star Stephen Gatley (and, if we go far enough back, Diana's celebrity funeral […]

James Eglinton
Thursday, August 30th 2012

Theology matters. Since God is love, the study of God produces a correct understanding of the source and nature of love (1 John 4:8; KJV). Many Christians avoid answering the nagging question asked by nonbelievers and believers alike regarding why a loving God allows afflictions if he is indeed sovereign and could stop all pain […]

Le Ann Trees
Tuesday, May 1st 2012

I’ve concluded that the typical evangelical funeral can go quite a ways to making a person an atheist. I’ve also concluded that the church needs to reclaim the fundamental truth that Christianity is primarily for dying. Not primarily for living, but for dying; and because it is primarily about preparing to die, it has something […]

Craig A. Parton
Friday, January 1st 2010

“Modern Reformation has championed confessional Reformation theology in an anti-confessional and anti-theological age.”

Picture of J. Ligon Duncan, IIIJ. Ligon Duncan, IIISenior Minister, First Presbyterian Church
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