Not many churches have graveyards anymore, and that is a shame. This book [Theology for the Church], like all systematic theology texts, will one day wither away into mold and dust. The library of Congress will be swept away like refuse. If one really wants to see a theology for the church in action, one might walk into an old church graveyard at night. Walk about and see the headstones weathered and ground down by the elements. Contemplate the fact that beneath your feet are men and women who once had youthful skin and quick steps and hectic calendars but who are now piles of forgotten bones. Think about the fact that the scattered teeth in the earth below you once sang hymns of hope -- maybe "When the Roll Is Called Up Yonder I'll Be There" or "When We All Get to Heaven." They are silent now.
But while you are there, think about what every generation of Christians has held against the threat of sword and guillotine and chemical weaponry. This stillness will one day be interrupted by a shout from the eastern sky, a joyful call with a distinctly northern Galilean accent. And that's when life really gets interesting.
Russell D. Moore, "Personal and Cosmic Eschatology," in A Theology for the Church, ed. Daniel L. Akin (B&H Publishing: Nashville, 2007), 926.
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