“Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” – John 12:24
“The last enemy to be destroyed is death...Death is swallowed up in victory.” – 1 Corinthians 15:26, 54
"The greater the sin, the greater the mercy, the deeper the death and the brighter the rebirth.” - C. S. Lewis
"This story...has the very taste of primary truth." - J. R. R. Tolkien

Friday, August 8, 2008

Death and Resurrection, Part VII

…Most importantly, Christ emphasized the theme of death and resurrection in the lives of his followers:

  • “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” – Matthew 16:24-25
  • “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. Whoever loves his life loses it, and whoever hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.” – John 12:24*
How does one gain one’s life by losing or hating it? How does one produce fruit by dying? Yet here again is the beauty of paradox in death and resurrection – out of death comes new life. It is part of our lives as each one takes up his cross to follow Christ. To die to self and lose one’s life and be free from the hell of self-centeredness and pride! To live in Christ and love him and see him for who he is! In him we see the seed die, and in him we see the fruit grow out of the barren and desolate ground…

*See also 1 Corinthians 15:36, “What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.”

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