“We do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”2 Corinthians 4:16–17
“In this world you will have trouble,” Jesus said. Sin, sickness, suffering—these beat us down and challenge the promises of God upon which our hope is built. Death is their ringleader, the arch-enemy of hope. What little we have seems to fade away when we stare into the grim face of death. “But take heart!” said Jesus. “I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
At the cross, Christ swallowed death whole. In Jesus’ hand, death became the instrument of its own destruction. Moreover, His death is also the means by which Jesus obtained eternal life for His people.
From the Apostle Paul to early church father John Chrysostom to contemporary musician Matt Maher, weak and timid saints continue to sing this hymn of hope because of Christ’s victory over sin and death:
Christ is risen from the dead,/ Trampling over death by death.
Come awake, come awake,/ Let us rise up from the grave.
O death, where is your sting?/ O hell, where is your victory?
O church, come stand in the light./ Our God is not dead, He’s alive, He’s alive!
Death itself died with Christ’s last breath. So for the one who hopes in Him, death is the funeral of every sin and the resurrection of every joy.