“O Death” by Chrysostom

I ran across these great words by Chrysostom (d. 407 AD) in Marva Dawn’s book, Talking the Walk.  They can also be found in Chrysostom’s “Catechetical Address.”

Let no one fear death,
for the Savior’s death has set us free.
He who was held prisoner by death
has annihilated it.

By descending into death,
he made death captive.
He angered it
when it tasted of his flesh.

Isaiah saw this, and he cried:
Death was angered when it encountered you in the lower regions.

It was angered, for it was defeated.
It was angered, For it was mocked.
It was angered, for it was abolished.
It was angered, for it was overthrown.
It was angered, for it was bound in chains.

It received a body and it met God face to face.
It took earth and encountered heaven.
It took that which is seen and fell upon the unseen.

O Death, where is your sting?
O Grave, where is your victory?

Christ is risen and you are overthrown.
Christ is risen and the devils have fallen.
Christ is risen and the angels rejoice.
Christ is risen and life reigns.
Christ is risen and not one dead remains in the grave.

For Christ, being risen from the dead,
is become the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep,
and to him be glory and honor, even to eternity.

– Chrysostom-

rev. shane lems
covenant presbyterian church (OPC)
hammond, WI