By   •   July 6, 2005   •   Topics:


Does the Bible forbid cremation? This has been a controversial topic in our family recently, because an aunt of mine died not long ago and directed that her body be cremated. One of our cousins, however, claims the Bible says you can't go to heaven if you're cremated. Is he right?


No, this isn’t what the Bible says, and I find nothing in the Bible that forbids cremation as a means of disposing of a person’s body.

It’s true that burial was the common practice in the Bible, and cremation was rare. When cremation was practiced, it showed contempt for the person (e.g., Achan, who disobeyed God and brought defeat to the Israelites—see Joshua 7:25). Cremation is often practiced today in cultures that have no respect for the human body or see it as evil; Christians in those societies reject cremation. We believe God gave us our bodies, and they should be treated with respect. After creating the human race, “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good” (Genesis 1:31).

One reason burial has been preferred by Christians is because the Bible teaches that one day those who die in Christ will be raised from the dead and given new bodies. But God is able to bring together whatever has been scattered: “And he will send his angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of the heavens” (Mark 13:27).

I hope your family won’t be divided over this issue. Pray for peace in your family—and may each of you face the reality of death, and rejoice in the hope we have of eternal life because of Christ’s death and resurrection for us.

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  1. carol says:

    When you are buried your bones evidently turns to dust. Ashes to ashes and dust to dust.

  2. Terry says:

    Is cremation OK if a person is poor and has no money?

  3. Sharon says:

    I was asked this question. People say we are to treat our body as a temple. I know this written but it has nothing to do with how we dispose of our body. God will know where you are even if you were thrown in the ocean. Just my own belief…

  4. Rhonda Ziara says:

    We are our spirit. Ashes to ashes. What does it matter what happens to our bodies?

  5. Valerie Richardson says:

    I am not for cremation but if the family does not have the money or insurance for a burial than that the only way. But I am very much against taking the ashes and putting them in a necklace and ring to wear I am very much against the because you are not showing the respect to the dead. I think that the ashes is a sign of demonic.

    1. Lee says:

      So when my daughters feel better when wearing a necklace from their mother that died of cancer way way to young (41) that’s a sign of being demonic? Dang you need to check yourself and go back to the Bible.