“Death has been swallowed up in victory. O Death, where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting?”– 1 Corinthians 15:54-55
Death as the closure of possibilities, death as the impossibility at the end of my experience, silences. All projects end, all desires fulfilled or otherwise cease, all hopes expire, all dreams fade into the ontological nothingness that is death. It is the last enemy, and in many ways, the only enemy. All threat, all power, is an invocation of the threat of death, all power is the calling forth of death into life. But what would it mean to call life into death?
Life never enters into death, because death cuts off life. To speak of life after death, one must already be speaking theologically, of something that can bring life into death, so to bring life out of death. For this to happen, Life itself has to enter death. As God Incarnate, Jesus Christ enters into death — God dies upon a Roman cross, mocked and scorned by all, deserted, alone. A few weeks previous to this, Jesus claims, “I am the Resurrection and the Life.” Life enters into death upon the cross, into our state of ontological nothingness. Is this even fathomable? No logic can explain it. It is the mystery at the heart of God — in the eternal design, God was to bring God’s self into death, and so bring life out of death.
Death has been swallowed up in victory. The victory of life. For if God has died and been raised in Jesus Christ, so all who fall asleep shall too be raised. There is no life after death. There is life again. Life anew. Life continuously. The grave has no victory, for grace has won. Death has no sting, for it is merely sleep. This is the meaning of resurrection. This is the meaning of Life. God enters into the entirety of our experience and what lays beyond our experience, but that which we must encounter, so that we can enter into the entire experience of God — into the divine life and dance.