Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sun. Feb. 10, 2013 (Thomas Bergen)

Thomas Bergen (resident of Menno and graduate student at Regent) spoke on "the Slavery of Death". As the church reflected on Christ's death, they initially associated sin with death and the devil, concluding that Jesus came to destroy the devil and all that is evil (Christus victor). St Paul talks of the body (soma), of Jesus becoming embodied, and also wrote about sary, or of our very "flesh" being equated with a sinful nature. Romans speaks of our inner conflict over good and evil, and Hebrews 2.14-16 of our fear of death. Many older people can recall how death and dying used to be completely integrated into family life--families caring for their elders at home, their homes eventually serving as a hospice where people died and remained in state, families even gathering to dig the grave near the church. With the professionalization of death (hospitals, hospices, funeral homes, cremation, cemeteries far removed from daily city life), death is being viewed very differently. Is this because we are no longer enslaved to death, or is it because we fear death, its messiness and finality. Is our modern society actually more fearful of death than earlier generations, leading us into another type of slavery of fear? What can deliver us from this growing fear? Thomas promised a sequel to this talk, leaving us with a final thought: "He who does not fear death is outside the tyranny of the devil." [JEK]

Listen to the sermon audio MP3 recording from Sunday, February 10th, 2013 using your browser's preferred media player.



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