This week, a 14 year-old girl who died of cancer, won a legal battle to have her body frozen. This is part of a process called cryonics, which tries to stop the decaying process, by freezing the body at it is at the point of death.
It’s a heart-breaking situation; for a 14 year old who has to consider her own death; and for those left behind.
In a letter to the court, she wrote this:
“I have been asked to explain why I want this unusual thing done. I am only 14 years old and I don’t want to die but I know I am going to die. I think being cryopreserved gives me a chance to be cured and woken up – even in hundreds of years’ time. I don’t want to be buried underground.
I want to live and live longer and I think that in the future they may find a cure for my cancer and wake me up. I want to have this chance. This is my wish.”
All of us can identify with her words. But Christ offers a better hope than cryonics, and here’s why;
- The body you get back is not frozen at 80 with cancer and a dodgy hip. It’s yours – but made perfect. If you’re paralysed now, in Christ you will walk. If you’re depressed or broken in mind, you will be healed.
- Our faith is not in science or this world’s advances; but in Jesus Christ who has defeated death and rises from it with His people.
- Cryonics tries to defer death. But as Christians we are not afraid of it. We recognise that all must go through it – but in Jesus, we come through it and are raised to new life and hope.
- Cryonics tries to rescue us from physical death. Jesus comes for something much more serious – spiritual separation from God, that no amount of freezing can reach.
- We have no evidence that cryonics will ever work, (and no-one has ever frozen or revived the smallest mammal). But the Bible testifies to a God who has been working since the beginning and holds life and death in His hands. A God who can bring life, even from dry bones!
- If in the future, cryonics brings us back from death; we would have no idea how to live. The world would be unimaginably different; and we would always be outsiders. In Jesus we are filled by a Spirit who leads and teaches us; and unites us to a universe that bows before the same King.
- Cryonics is a business. Christianity is life itself.
- As Christians we rise to a universe that is also redeemed. With cryonics, it stops with our flesh.
- We don’t own our bodies. Jesus does.