Death: Shall We Weep or Rejoice?
When a Christian dies, shall those of us who remain weep or rejoice? The biblical answer is both, even simultaneously.
I saw this in a new place as I was memorizing my way through Philippians again. I had never noticed before the emotional contrast between Philippians 2:17–18 and 2:27.
An Invitation to Rejoice
In Philippians 2:17–18, Paul is describing the possibility of his own death as “drink offering on the sacrificial offering” of their faith. He is willing to die in the service of strengthening and purifying their faith.
Then he says, if that happens, “I am glad and rejoice with you all. Likewise you also should be glad and rejoice with me” (verse 18). Not only does he rejoice at the prospect of his own death, but he tells them to rejoice with him.
He already told them why he rejoices at the prospect of his death: “My…