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rookie
Member



Joined: 2003/6/3
Posts: 4792


 Cremation vs Embalming/Burial

My Vietnamese Brother Hua, is struggling with this issue. He is a member of the First Vietnamese AOG in Orange County. He is worried about the influences that come from cultural traditions that are strongly cemented by past Buddist traditions. The elders of his church teach that cremation is wrong and that we as christians must not be cremated but buried.

I myself have no wisdom in this topic. Can you help me and brother Hua?

In Christ
Jeff


_________________
Jeff Marshalek

 2005/6/3 11:57Profile









 Re: Cremation vs Embalming/Burial

Hi Jeff and Brother Hua,

There are no instances of cremation in the Bible. An interesting text is this one:

Deuteronomy 34
1 And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that [is] over against Jericho. And the LORD shewed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan, {Pisgah: or, the hill} 2 And all Naphtali, and the land of Ephraim, and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah, unto the utmost sea, 3 And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, unto Zoar. 4 And the LORD said unto him, This [is] the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see [it] with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither. 5 So [b]Moses the servant of the LORD died[/b] there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD. 6 And [b]he buried him[/b] in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Bethpeor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day. 7 And Moses [was] an hundred and twenty years old when he died: his eye was not dim, nor his natural force abated. {natural...: Heb. moisture} {abated: Heb. fled}

On the other hand,

[b]2 Kings 9[/b]
34 And when he was come in, he did eat and drink, and said, Go, see now this cursed [woman], and bury her: for she [is] a king's daughter. 35 And they went to bury her: but they found no more of her than...

Personally, I would prefer to be buried, not cremated. This is because there are associations throughout the word of God both with 'body' and with 'fire'.

God put a mark on Cain, despite his sin, because man is made in God's image. Cremation would destroy this, by an avoidable act.

Fire is the way unholy places or items were destroyed, or, made holy, or, cleansed. We believe that sin is a spiritual condition, which affects our souls and bodies.

Once this has been fixed by salvation through (the fire of) the Spirit, our conscience is clear and our bodies have been 'washed with pure water' (Heb 10:22). We are clean. There is no sense in which we need fire [i]after[/i] we are dead physically, because it is the life we lived which makes the difference to eternal destiny.

This is how I see things. I hope others will comment.

 2005/6/3 14:08
5nva
Member



Joined: 2003/8/15
Posts: 179


 Re:

Greeting:

I believe there is at least one instance of cremation mentioned in the bible.

1 Samuel 31:12 says they took the bodies of Saul and his sons and burned them.

I also think there are refrences in the old testament that when one was found in certain sins that the punishment was that they were to be burned.

I say this not to support a Christian being cremated but rather to point out that the instances that I'm aware of in the bible that mention cremation or bodies being burned are not in a positive sense. I believe as Christians we should be buried and let God take care of the rest.

Just some thoughts.

Mike


_________________
Mike

 2005/6/3 16:04Profile









 Re: Cremation vs Embalming/Burial

Quote:
the instances that I'm aware of in the bible that mention cremation or bodies being burned are not in a positive sense.


Thanks for putting me right. More food for thought.

 2005/6/3 16:21
toireasa
Member



Joined: 2005/5/30
Posts: 8
Kentucky

 Re: Cremation vs Embalming/Burial

I think I posted my comment on this in the wrong place! Forgive the greenhorn! Went to try to move it or delete and re-enter, couldn't find it! It was there, I am guessing someone else deleted? I'll try again....
This is a question I have also struggled with, I had two loved ones who chose cremation before their decease. One, the ashes are buried and the other, my sister, ashes were scattered. I have an abiding memory of sensing her being caught up by the Spirit as the breeze caught up her ashes. I am not sure that the earthly remains of the body (from dust to dust, ashes to ashes!) are of great significance. Will we not receive new bodies.. What of the multiplied millions of bodies burned through the centuries for many reasons..disease control, accidental, warfare, execution? I'm not sure there is a difinative answer to this question.

 2005/6/3 18:19Profile
5nva
Member



Joined: 2003/8/15
Posts: 179


 Re:

toireasa:

Yes, I agree there may not be a difinative answer to this question. It wa snot my intention to suggest that. I just wanted to point out what I am aware of in the scriptures and that it seems that it cremation was only done to those that had turned their back on God. They may have not requested it to be done.

I have no doubt that there are those who love Jesus Christ and have done this. God will give us a new body that will reign with Him in glory. I myself just can't see me making the chose to have my earthly body destroyed in this way.

Please forgive me if I offended you, that was not the purpose of my post.

God bless,

Mike


_________________
Mike

 2005/6/3 19:24Profile
toireasa
Member



Joined: 2005/5/30
Posts: 8
Kentucky

 Re:

Mike..
Oh my, Absolutly no offense was taken...you made some great points. As I said, it is a question I struggle with also.

Jeff..
I am praying for you on this one..hope you find His answer to this question..if you do I'd love to hear.

God's Blessings to all here...t

 2005/6/3 21:35Profile
AndrewBruce
Member



Joined: 2005/4/12
Posts: 23
Blythewood, SC

 Re:

I agree with what has been said but I did want to mention another verse in the Bible that refers to cremation...

Amos 2:1-3 ESV Thus says the LORD: "For three transgressions of Moab, and for four, I will not revoke the punishment, because he burned to lime the bones of the king of Edom. (2) So I will send a fire upon Moab, and it shall devour the strongholds of Kerioth, and Moab shall die amid uproar, amid shouting and the sound of the trumpet; (3) I will cut off the ruler from its midst, and will kill all its princes with him," says the LORD.


_________________
Andrew Bruce

 2005/6/3 21:54Profile





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