Friday, April 2, 2010

An Easter Reflection on Death









Rising out of Hades like smoke from a smoldering fire,
roaming the earth with sickle in hand,
reaping one person after another
with no respect for age or race or creed or position,
Death has done his dirty work.
Death: an equal opportunity destroyer.

But descending from heaven came One
who had the courage and power
to look Death in the eye and say "No!"

"No! You can't have Jairus' daughter. Get up, child!”
And she did!

"No! You can't have this widow's son.
Come out of the casket, boy,
and kiss away your mama's tears."
And he did!

"No! Not even four days' death can seal your grip.
Lazarus, come forth!"
And he did!

It seemed as if Death had met has match.

Until …

Until one Friday.
A crown of thorns.
Nails in hands and feet.
"Crucified," they called it.
And with his ever insatiable appetite,
Death swallowed up
the One who had spit in his eye;
the only One who had been able to say "No!" to him
and have His way.

Jesus: dead and buried:
stone cold dead,
dead as the nails they pounded through His hands and feet.
Dead—no heartbeat, no pulse, no breath. Dead.
And buried:
hastily wrapped in death rags
and layed in a borrowed tomb—
a tomb sealed with a heavy stone.

Stick a fork in Him;
He's done.

Now Death, drunk with power,
reclined in his Lay-Z-Boy
after his best day at work.
Wine glass in hand,
he offered himself a toast:
"To me!" he said.
"I am more powerful than God!
I have done battle with His Son,
and won the victory!"

Oh, really?

Think again, Death.
Sunday dawned,
and God stomped so hard on Death
that the earth shook,
and the stone rolled away.
And from an empty tomb an angel said
to women who had come to anoint Jesus' dead body:
"Why do you seek the living among the dead?
"He is not here;
"He is risen, just as He said."

Death is swallowed up in victory!
And we who know the Victor share in the spoil of His war.
So Jesus, not Death, gets the last word,
and that word is "Eternal Life."
For Death has met his match,
he's lost his stinger,
and all the power of Death is dead.

3 comments:

  1. Michael PoundersApril 3, 2010 at 7:58 PM

    Well said. Thank you, pastor, for loving us and loving the lost like Jesus did.

    ReplyDelete
  2. We need to make the worlds biggest easter egg; and put that entire story on it - to symbolize the truth of Easter.
    Awesome post Pastor.
    Thank You !
    When do you sleep ?
    Lori Gomez

    ReplyDelete
  3. John, you have become as fine a poet as you are a preacher and pastor. Powerful pictures in words.

    "And the last enemy to be destroyed is death."

    ReplyDelete