Clergy View: You are dust and to dust you shall return

Trust Jesus then rest.

Pastor Bill Werth

Thousands of Christians will have the above words said over them today as ashes are applied to their forehead in the form of a cross.

Those words remind us of the words that will someday be spoken over all of us when we are buried: Earth to Earth, Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust. The words remind us of our mortality. Our bodies will return to the dust from which they were created. We will all die. We are not getting out of this alive.

When we die our soul will immediately go either to heaven or to hell. At that moment our eternity will be sealed. Our body will be buried to await the resurrection of all bodies at the second coming of Jesus. On that last day our body will be reunited with our soul to live forever where our souls had been from the day of our death.

Assuming that most people would rather spend eternity in heaven than an eternity in hell, it’s good to know how to get to heaven. The only way to heaven is through faith in Jesus. Faith alone in Jesus. God offers heaven as a free gift to all who trust Jesus as their Savior.

It would be a good thing, then, to heed Jesus’ call to repent. We repent when we acknowledge that we are sinners. We repent when we have sorrow over our sin and understand that our sin separates us from a holy God. We repent when we trust that God forgives all our sins because of Jesus. The Christian’s life is a life of repentance.


Turning away from ourselves and to Jesus is what Lent is all about. Lent is not about what we sacrifice. Lent is not about what we give up. Lent is about the sacrifice of Jesus. Lent is about what Jesus gave up. Jesus gave up his life on the cross to take away our sins so we can live forever in heaven. If you want to give something up for Lent, give up trying to earn heaven by your works and sacrifices. Give up trusting in yourself for eternal life. Instead, trust Jesus. Then, rest. Rest. Be still. Know and believe with all your heart that Jesus did all the work to save you. Then, whenever your last breath is taken, God’s angels will carry your soul to your home in heaven. And you will get out of this alive.

Bill Werth is pastor of Christ Lutheran Church.


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