In Memoriam + Delbert Lee Wagner
Delivered By
Pr. Lovett
Delivered On
December 21, 2012
Central Passage
Luke 2:25-32


+ Luke 2:25-32 +


In the name of the Father and of the + Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Beloved in the Lord, sisters, family, and friends, we mourn the death of a man, this man, Delbert Lee Wagner. We mourn because we are separated from him. We mourn because death is the enemy. And the enemy has robbed us yet again; stolen away from us one more of our brothers. With all the death and sorrow that fills these days, it seems that for this reason we have been born and for this purpose we come into the world – to die. It seems the one constant, the one thing all the children of Adam have in common. We are mortal.

Yet though we are mortal, we cannot avoid the truth that death is the enemy. It is hardwired into us that we are not supposed to die. We were not created to die. It is intuitive that death is unnatural – not a part of nature, not a part of the created order. Our Creator did not create death. Death was not there in the beginning.

But there was one who was there in the beginning, who created us and in whose image we are created. He created the heavens and all the hosts of heaven; the sun and moon and all stars and gave each one their name. He created the earth and the sea and He filled them with life because He is life. He was in the beginning and all things were created through Him and by Him and for Him. And He has come into the world, born of the Blessed Virgin Mother, whose birth we soon will be celebrating. And unlike us, those whom He created, He did come into the world to die. For this reason He was born, to give His life as a ransom for the lives all men. For by this one man’s death, we are saved from our death.

He who is very God of very God was born of woman, born under the law that condemns us in our sin, that we who are under the law might be under grace. He took on your flesh and died your death and Delbert’s death, so that you would have His life.

In this one man’s death, death has lost its sting. In this one man’s death, death lost its power. So that now we do not say that they have died, but that they have fallen asleep. And since they are asleep, then they shall be awakened.

So though we mourn today because of death, mourning the death of our brother and friend, mourning the separation of our loved one, though we mourn we do not mourn as those who have no hope. For we have hope, and His name is Jesus, and He has come to save His people from their sins and from the power of death. In Him is life, and this life is the light of all men. It is your light as you struggle with the loss of your brother and friend. It is your light as you mourn and weep. Jesus is your light, guiding you in the way of peace. He shines His word of life and resurrection on you, warming you with the comfort and knowledge that as we have been baptized into His death, so we are raised in resurrection.

+In Nomine Iesu+