Death Swallowed Up

“O Death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?”

— 1 Corinthians 15:55, kjv

Someone once asked, “Who has not at some time in his life trembled at the thought of death? Who has been able to resist him?” All of our might and wisdom, all of our cunning and power have been to no avail before death’s invincible might.

But do you know that the great specter of death that has always clouded the horizon has been vanquished? Do you know that you no longer need fear the grave?

Against the heartless monster of death, God commissioned His Son, who sat at His right hand. Jesus willingly responded, “Lo, I have come to do Thy will.” Christ took upon Himself the task of confronting and overcoming our temptations, and He bore our sorrows. Finally, Jesus Christ gave Himself to mortal combat with death, laying down His life for us. He passed through that greatest of all ordeals so we wouldn’t have to; He allowed Himself to be bound in the grave that He might once and for all “break the bands of death.”

By His substitutionary death, Christ undermined the power and foundation of the grave. Christ’s light has overtaken the darkness of the grave, and His victory has disempowered the king of terrors—death. Because we share in this victory, we Christians should rejoice. The world over, people lack hope when anticipating death. But we who trust in the great Prince of Life need no longer fear death. We can look forward to Heaven, where the shadow of that specter shall never fall upon the threshold. Those dark, hollow eyes of the king of terrors, that have so inspired horror in millions, will then have become a joke. No longer will that bony finger of death beckon to anyone to come and follow him.

In light of Christ’s resurrection, Paul wrote, “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” In the same way, you and I can rejoice today, knowing that death has been swallowed up in victory—all thanks to Jesus Christ.

“When the stars have burnt out, we who trust
in Christ will have just begun to live.”