Burial or Cremation (What Does the Bible Say?)

by Glen H. Jones

This short book was written after a death in the author's family. After his mother's cremation, the author began to investigate what the Bible had to say about burial practices. His conclusion was that the Bible lays great emphasis on burial of the dead. On the other hand the Bible is silent about dignified cremation practices. Scripture records that Joseph, Sarah (Abraham's wife), Rachel (Jacob's wife), Jacob, and David were all buried. The evil Jezebel was denied burial because the dogs ate her body. The New Testament records the burial of Lazarus of Bethany, Jesus, the body of John the Baptist, and the martyred Stephen. Criminals and lawbreakers were denied burial; their bodies were burned (e.g. Achan and his family were stoned and their bodies burned for Achan's sin). When Judah wrongfully assumed his daughter-in-law had committed adultery, he said, "Bring her out, and let her be burned!" Hebrews who violated certain Mosaic laws (i.e. concerning adultery) were commanded to be burned. Parke believes burial should be preferred by Christians because our body was created by God, because our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and because almost all biblical saints were buried. God is able, of course, to resurrect the remains of believers whose bodies were burned or otherwise destroyed. But burial of the body more accurately represents biblical practices, the author concludes.
2011 Disciple 155x50 2011 AMG 155x50
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