Life-expectancy worldwide is twice what it was a hundred years ago. And because of modern medicine, many of us don’t often see death up close. That makes it easy to live as if death is someone else’s problem. It isn’t.
Ignoring the certainty of death doesn’t protect us from feeling its effects throughout the lives we’re living now. But this avoidance can hold us back from experiencing the powerful, everyday relevance of Jesus’s promises to us. So long as death remains remote and unreal, Jesus’s promises will too.
But honesty about death brings hope to life. That’s the ironic claim at the heart of this book. Cultivating “death-awareness” helps us bring the promises of Jesus from the hazy clouds of some other world into the everyday problems of our world—where they belong.
Table of Contents:
Foreword by Russell Moore Acknowledgments Introduction
Where Is Thy Sting?
The Problem of Identity and the Promise of Union with Christ
The Problem of Futility and the Promise of Purpose
The Problem of Loss and the Promise of Eternal Life
The Problems of Life and the Promise of Glory
Grieve in Hope
General Index Scripture Index
About the author:
Matthew McCullough (PhD, Vanderbilt University) serves as pastor of Trinity Church in Nashville, Tennessee, which he helped plant. He is the author of The Cross of War and writes occasionally for 9Marks and the Gospel Coalition.
“Matt McCullough’s meditation on death is haunting, profound, and stirring, reminding us of our identity and our destiny apart from Jesus Christ. Death casts a shadow over our lives, showing us, as McCullough points out, that we aren’t the center of the universe. Those who live rightly and those who live forever often think of death, but at the same time they live with hope since Jesus is the resurrection and the life. This book reminds us why we die and teaches us how to live.” ~Thomas R. Schreiner, James Buchanan Harrison Professor of New Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
“This is a brilliant book. Rightly advocating ‘death awareness’ but not ‘death acceptance,’ McCullough powerfully demonstrates that in order to remember Christ well, we need to learn to remember death well. This book shines with scriptural truth, pouring forth the light of Christ upon our fleeting, fear-filled lives.” ~Matthew Levering, James N. and Mary D. Perry, Jr. Chair of Theology, Mundelein Seminary; author, Dying and the Virtues
“This is a profoundly helpful book. With a preacher’s turn of phrase and illustrative eye, with a pastor’s care for precious people and their greatest fears, and with a theologian’s grasp of the Bible’s big picture and the heart of the gospel, Matthew McCullough writes to overcome our detachment from death and deepen our attachment to the Lord Jesus Christ. These pages will repay careful thought and meditative reflection on their surprising riches.” ~David Gibson, Minister, Trinity Church, Aberdeen, Scotland; author, Living Life Backward; coeditor, From Heaven He Came and Sought Her