ON DEATH AND DYING
The practices of the American funeral and the treatment of the dead are historically and basically Egyptian. Embalming to preserve, and to dress and decorate and to put glasses and cosmetics on a corpse is very ancient and perhaps even dark. The purpose is to make that which is dead appear to be alive. The Egyptian process has become the American way of dealing with the dead. They were making the dead acceptable to the mystery of death and through presentation and preservation the dead still have faculty to combat evil spirits. Also, the idea of appearing intact, even though dead as a doornail, gives a visual for others to continue experiencing the person. With royalty this meant retaining power and influence by allowing people to see a persevered body, meaning the King lives!
Without the pagan forms of preservation we would more quickly comply with Genesis 3:19, “For you are dust and to dust you shall return.” And I should add, “The dust will return to the earth as it was, and the spirit will return to God who gave it” (Ecclesiastes 12:7). We return to God instantly as our breath ceases. The body is left for dust and the spirit lives on. We are painting and polishing clay pots with our current practices. For the believers of Jesus the preparation of the soul is foremost as we prepare to meet Christ face to face. The soul needs no paint; it just needs to be covered by the blood of the Lamb. “It is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body” (1 Corinthians 15:44).
So much for death and dying. We inherit the imperishable.
“And everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.” Jesus