The Bible and What It Says About Cremation
Published on January 20, 2022
Cremation is the disposition of a dead body through burning. The process takes place in a chamber specifically designed for cremation purposes. About 50 % of the deaths in the United States are cremated. There are reasons why most people prefer to cremate their loved ones when they die. They include:
- Almost all religions have accepted cremation.
- The cost of cremation is a bit lower compared to the cost of a traditional burial.
- The process of arranging cremation has proven to be much simpler for the consumer.
- Separation of families across the United States.
- The consumers do not want to take unique space in their land with a cemetery. With them having to wake up every day and seeing the tombs is something that they would not want to experience. It would make them be sad.
Is cremation a sin?
There is nowhere in the Bible that cremation has been declared a sin. Most Christians do not take cremation to be a sin. However, the Catholic Church banned cremation for their members for a long time. They believe that man, who was created in the likeness of God, could only experience resurrection after death if only their bodies had all their parts intact. The following Bible verses act as proof:
"And many of those asleep in the dust of the earth will wake up, some to everlasting life and others to reproach and to everlasting contempt."
“I am a foreigner and settler among you.f Give me a property to serve as a burial place in your midst so that I may remove my dead for burial.”"
The Catholic Church and cremation
As said earlier that the Catholic church did not support cremation. A few years ago, the Vatican gave conditions to those who wanted to cremate and were members of the Catholic Church. He talked about the remains not being scattered or kept at home. They had to be stored in a sacred place approved by the church. He explained that keeping ashes at home would deprive the Christian community of remembering the dead. If you followed this rule them you were free to cremate your loved one.
What do other religions believe about cremation?
However, most people believe that cremation is the right way to take care of a dead body. They say that even if the body is buried, it will end up decomposing in such a way that you can't tell whose body it was. Especially if you think that cremated bodies will not resurrect, a buried body will not be intact when the time of resurrection comes since everything will be decomposed and finished.
Does the Bible agree to cremation?
In the New and Old Testament, the Israelites performed burial practices, whereas cremation was seen as a form of punishment to those who died while sinning or were sinners while they were alive. The Bible does not favor nor forbid the process of cremation. It is neutral.
Bible verses that talk about cremation
You will not find many Bible verses that directly talk about cremation.
1 Corinthians 13:3
"And if I give all my belongings to feed others,d and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I do not benefit at all."
"In the sweat of your face you will eat bread* until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken.x For dust you are and to dust you will return.”
1 Samuel 31:12
"...all the warriors rose and traveled all night and took the bodies of Saul and his sons off the wall of Beth-shan. They returned to Jaʹbesh and burned them there."
2 Kings 23:20
"So he sacrificed on the altars all the priests of the high places who were there, and he burned human bones on them. After that he returned to Jerusalem."
The Bible is neutral when it comes to cremation. It does not directly say whether it is okay or not. No verse has evidence supporting cremation, nor is there a verse that strongly disagrees. Most of the burning that has taken place in the Bible has been in the form of punishment. If you are in a dilemma choosing either burial or cremation, you better seek more guidance from your spiritual leaders. They will guide you in making a decision.
Published on January 20, 2022