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Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by ktn4eg, Mar 26, 2012.
What are your views about cremation? Is it something that's forbidden in the Bible?
The Bible is silent on the issue.
Cremation!!! Did you say cremation??? The subject burns me up.
Not completely silent.
The pagans had no reverence for the body in general. Neither did the Jews when they were not right with God, for they practiced pagan rituals. They made their children "walk through the fire," "cremating" them while they were yet alive.
On the other hand there was a degree of reverence for the human body that is seen in the OT. Abraham purchased a "burial ground" for his descendants from the Hittites, that he might have a proper place to bury Sarah, and those that would follow her in death. There were many that followed that were buried in the cave of Macpelah, that sacred burial place. In fact, Joseph made the people promise, that though his body may be embalmed by the Egyptians, that it would not be left in Egypt. They would carry it out of Egypt and bury it in the land of his ancestors. There would be no cremation. (That was understood), but a proper Hebrew burial. Though he was ruler of Egypt, he wanted a humble burial service among his own people. That was important to him.
Yes, it is silent on cremation, per se. But there is much on the importance of burial as a proper way of burying the dead, not burning them to ashes. Why would Abraham go to all that trouble to seek out a place to bury his descendants, when as a nomad, he could have just disposed of each body one by one on the way by burning them. I am sure the thought never crossed his mind.
On a serious note, the Bible does not say one way or the other, but I agree with DHK about respect for the body. I have heard the theory that the Lord is against cremation because of the bodily ressurection, but have no idea what that means. The Bible says we return to dust, and am sure the Lord could put a body back in any shape if necessary. That is too deep for me.
Personally, not that I will care at the time, I had just as soon follow the practice of the casket and six feet under.
I could see the purpose of cremation at a time of some type of emergency, such as a huge natural disaster, or a devestating pandemic, or something of that nature.
We end up as dust either way, and with the ridiculous cost of funerals I'm either going to donate my body to medical science or be cremated.
He probably didn't have to pay $10,000 for a funeral. Today funerals are big business and in it to make money. It has nothing to do with respect. I would much rather my son get his inheritance rather than put it in the ground. That is much more respectful to me.
Cremation spoils one's chance at a bodily resurrection. Science tells us that it took God millions of years to put our bodies together, and once we turn it back to dust, we think He can do it in the blink of an eye?
And too bad about all those poor souls who drowned in ship accidents, explosions...and what about all the saints that were burned at the stake? Tough luck I guess.
Their resurrections will be spiritual, like the creation of Adam. Adam simply symbolizes the moment that our ape-like ancestors received their souls.
The only way this is an issue is if you REALLY read things into Scripture. For example, the passing kids through fire practice was pagan worship, as was pointed out. That was the real problem, pagan worship. It was not at all about how the bodies of the dead were too be handled.
Yes, Abraham sought and bought land to bury his dead. It was a choice made by him, not commanded by God. It did place that land in the possession of God's people to be used at a later time....although not an issue of burial of the dead.
The idea that cremation somehow impedes God's ability to raise us up on that glorious day is, well, very odd to me as it thinks so low of God.
God did include a lot of instruction on how to handle dead bodies, animal and human, in the Law....but if we want to go there we have a lot of issues related to the work of Christ on the cross and the Law to wrestle with.
Back on topic...
I plan on being cremated. Cremate, don't cremate....it's up to you. Be fully convinced and walk according to your convictions. Don't lay those convictions on others.
Genesis 3:19 For you were made from dust, and to dust you will return. Hummm reminds me of that old Kansas song....anybody?
we have also moved into modernity regarding cultural concepts. Who really cares? This fleshly body returns to dust whether buried in a wooden box or burnt... In the resurrection we receive a new body,gladly; I don't want this old flesh.
Now, now, there's no reason here to get hot under the collar.
Jim, you have a special way with words.
I couldn't agree more!
In case there is any question, my first two posts are simply parodies mocking modern hermeneutics based on "science."
I work part-time for a funeral home company. They will provide whatever kind of funeral you want, or they'll cremate you. And they'll do a good job of giving you exactly what you want to pay for.
By far the most expensive item is the casket. You can pay anywhere from $3,000 to 10,000. The cost of the burial plots vary,and even getting the grave dug is expensive these days.
Many wise folks pre-plan and pre-pay their funerals. it takes a great burden off the family.
I know, it sounds like a commercial for funeral homes. But I plan to be cremated at a fraction of the cost of a traditional burial. I find no scriptural prohibition. As Jim said, we're all going back to dust, and I'm going to have them speed up the process.
I may even get my family to spread my ashes over my favorite golf course. It'll make the grass grow faster.
You have done well in mastering the art of tongue-in-cheek humor, as well as biting sarcasm.
The company I work also operates a crematory, and would any of you be surprised at the number of animals it cremates?
We have quite a few pet owners who have the beloved pets cremated.