Imagine being blindfolded and dropped in the middle of a dense, dark forest.
As your captor slips away and you remove the cover from your eyes, you’re met with a wall of trees. Surrounded by thick brush, with no path or obvious escape in sight, you feel lost, demoralized, and disoriented, unsure where to go or what to do – scared of what lies ahead and reluctant to walk forth into the unknown.
That’s what grief is like. An emotion of intense pain and power, it picks you up, spins you around, and punches you in the gut for good measure! This is the heartbreak of the crippling kind, and it’s hard to get through without drawing on various sources of support, hope, and comfort.
These poultices for the soul take many forms. Yet, funeral scriptures are some of the most useful for people of faith. These particular bible verses are poignant, profound, and imbued with ancient wisdom and offer a beacon of light in times of loss.
Today, we’re going to reveal 20 of the most popular, uplifting, and celebrated funeral scriptures, alongside some tips on choosing the right ones to call upon to honor your loved one. We hope it helps you, even in the tiniest of ways, as you are going through the worst of times.
How to Choose Bible Verses and Funeral Scriptures
Before we jump into the verses themselves, let’s start with some advice that should help you pick the perfect funeral scriptures for you and your loved one. While grieving, your mind may feel like it is in a fog, and you can't make decisions like you used to. Here's a checklist to help with this one aspect of honoring your friend or family member.
1. Consider the Deceased
A primary consideration should always be the loved one who has passed away. Did they ever express any wishes or requests for their funeral? Were there particular bible verses they often talked about or quoted? Or have they explicitly requested certain funeral scriptures in their will?
If so, then your job just got a lot simpler! Heed their wishes and honor their memory by selecting whatever verses they enjoyed in life.
Don’t worry if you answered “no” to all those questions though. Another approach is simply to keep your loved one in mind when making this decision. Pick verses you think they’d appreciate, that make sense in terms of who they were, and/or have some connection to them.
2. Consider the Attendees
It’s also important to consider the family, friends, and acquaintances who’ll be in the audience. You don’t necessarily have to choose bible verses you think they’d like – especially if they’d be at odds with the deceased person’s wishes – but you should certainly be sensitive to their cultural/religious beliefs and conscious of the effect any scriptures might have on them.
For instance, you could stick to verses from First and Second Thessalonians that talk about eternal life and give reasons for hope despite the loss. These topics are universal and uncontentious, which means these funeral scriptures almost always well-received.
3. Seek Advice
Planning a service and deciding on the right funeral scriptures can be a big responsibility. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with the task, can’t decide what verses to choose, or just don’t know where to begin, then don’t be afraid to get help.
Speak to the priest who’ll be taking the service, ask your loved ones for their input, and, if you’re religious, ask God for answers too.
No matter how it seems, you’re not alone in this decision. Sooner or later, whether it’s in a moment of silent reflection or a suggestion from a close friend, the perfect funeral scriptures to honor the deceased will become apparent.
20 Poignant and Uplifting Funeral Scriptures to Consider
In this section, we’re going to run through a long list of 20 potential funeral scriptures, bible verses, quotes, and passages you could include in the coming service. They are listed in no particular order.
1. Psalm 23:4
Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
2. 1 Thessalonians 4:13
Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.
3. Isaiah 41:10
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
4. John 14:1-3
Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
5. Matthew 5:4
Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
6. 1 Thessalonians 4:14
For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
7. Proverbs 14:32
When calamity comes, the wicked are brought down, but even in death the righteous have a refuge.
8. Ecclesiastes 3:1-4
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance.
9. Revelation 21:4
He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.
10. Isaiah 57:1-2
The righteous perish, and no one takes it to heart; the devout are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.
11. Isaiah 25:8
He will swallow up death forever; and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces, and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.
12. Psalm 55:22
Cast your cares on the Lord and He will sustain you; He will never let the righteous fall.
13. John 16:22
Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.
14. Psalm 46:1-4
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.
15. 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.
16. Romans 14:8
If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.
17. Corinthians 5:6-8
So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.
18. Lamentations 3:31-33
For no one is cast off by the Lord forever. Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love. For he does not willingly bring affliction or grief to anyone.
19. Matthew 11:28
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.
20. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.
Come Back to These Funeral Scriptures and Bible Verses As You Grieve
Losing someone you love is one of the most painful life experiences you can go through. Deep and tormenting, it can rock you to the core and leave you desperate for some relief, hope, and light.
Thankfully, these sources of comfort aren’t always far away. Aside from the love, care, and support of your family and friends, select funeral scriptures offer vital words of wisdom that help mourners reflect on their loss, bid farewell to the deceased, and find meaning amid their suffering.
We hope the 20 bible verses in this article will help you choose appropriate passages and quotes to use in these most difficult moments.
More From Money Life Wax
- What to Say When Someone Dies: Expert Tips and 30 Examples
- Experts Weigh In: 30 Warm, Thoughtful Yet Short Condolence Messages