Mike Schrage, Executive Director
O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? 1 Corinthians 15:55 (NLT)
A missionary friend recently shared his first experience with death and the funeral process in Myanmar. His Buddhist friend died from cancer at the age of 35. His account of the absence of peace in death for Buddhists is sobering in contrast to the peace we have, both in life and in death, as followers of Jesus.
“The body was covered with a fly net as friends and family came and grieved. After about 10 minutes they came with a wheeled stretcher bearing a small white plywood casket. They put his body in the casket and wheeled him about 100 feet away to the doors of the incinerator. Friends and family looked on one final time before they wheeled him through the doors to burn his body. On the plain concrete wall of the funeral room was written in English, ‘So as you are now, I once was. So as I am now, so you will be.’ It was like a final message from the deceased to his loved ones. The hopelessness literally echoed off the walls.”
Over 500 million Buddhists in the world today need to hear about the victory of Jesus over the grave and the peace available for them in both life and death. One of the missionary’s Buddhist coworkers noticed the difference between the religions.
“I think I see a major difference between Christianity and Buddhism. In Buddhism, we do our best to solve our own problems. If we do good, we get good; if we do bad, we get bad. But when we die we don’t have peace to know what is next. For Christians, you have hope when you die. You have peace that you will be with God when this life is over.”
Thank you for helping us share the Gospel so more people can find peace in life and death.