Philippians 1:20-30 and Luke 20:27-38
Suggested scripture readings are drawn from the alternative lectionary outlined in Brian McLaren's We Make the Road by Walking (reference and public library).
Many of the thoughts I shared about Christian attitudes toward death and the saints follow from these two books: 1) Accompany Them with Singing by Thomas Long (public library and reference) who speaks with deep conviction about funerals and the history of bodies in our liturgical tradition and 2) The World According to God by Martha Ellen Stortz (public library and reference) who explores the spiritual practice of remembering the dead and how that shapes our ideas about community. While it may be true there is no solid biblical stance on how to bury the dead, our church does have a tradition around bodily burials. Cremations are relatively recent. As a leader, I do not encourage people one way or the other in their choice; I do however, strongly guide families towards keeping either caskets or urns present and centered in worship. Click on the reference link to learn more. And then there are several articles online much like this one: