5 Great Bible Verses For Funerals or Graveside Services

by Jack Wellman · Print Print · Email Email

Funerals are hard for those left behind, but the Bible gives believers hope, so here are 5 great Bible verses to use for a funeral or graveside service.

Second Timothy 4:7-8 “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.”

Funerals are hard for those left behind, but the Bible gives believers hope, so here are 5 great Bible verses to use for a funeral or graveside service. Second Timothy was written by the Apostle Paul and it was like his last will and testament. He knew that his time was short and in the last letter ever written by Paul he said he had fought the good fight and finished the race, keeping the faith. Let that be said of us this side of the Kingdom as we move across the finish line someday.

John 11:25-26 “Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live” but what of us still alive? And everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

These are two of my favorite Bible verses and I have memorized them because they are useful in sharing the good news of Jesus’ victory over the grave. He mentions two kinds of people; those dead and those living who have trusted in Him. He says that “Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live,” so those who are Christ’s will live again, and in fact, are alive now if they’ve already passed into glory. He is the God of the living and not the dead, so Jesus mentions those who die, but what about us who live? He says that “everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die,” meaning those of us who have trusted in Christ will be living at Christ’s appearance and we shall will never even taste death. Jesus says He is the hope and power of the resurrection, meaning He is the life…eternal life in His precious presence (John 3:16-17). Either dead or alive, there’s no separation from God for those who have trusted in Jesus (Rom 8:37-39).


Second Corinthians 5:8 “ Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord.”

Songs about HeavenHaving presided at many funerals, I’ve seen the grief of the family members and friends. You can see the pain in their hearts. But for the person who has believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, I can honestly say, “This is not burial ground…it is resurrection ground.” They are not here, but even better, they are present with the Lord, because we know for believer’s, to be absent in death from this body means we’re immediately with the Lord. That should comfort all of us. They might be missing here on earth…but they’re not missing in heaven!

Job 14:14-15 “If a man dies, shall he live again? All the days of my service I would wait, till my renewal should come. You would call, and I would answer you; you would long for the work of your hands.”

Job’s comment in the Book of Job comes very close to what Jesus said in John 11:25-26. Job had the assurance that God would call and he (Job) would answer when his “renewal should come,” meaning the final days or the final resurrection of the just and the unjust (Dan 12:1-3).   Like everyone, their body will be joined back to their spirit and they will have glorified bodies while having physical ones.  Job has assurance that this was not the end. For those who have passed into glory, we know, this is not goodbye but “See you later.” If they’ve never trusted in Christ, then it is goodbye to the lost believer…forever.

Psalm 119:15 “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.”

We know the Bible teaches that God is the God of the Living and not the dead (Matt 22:32). And believers know that death is not the end but only the beginning. Losing our loved ones is not only painful to us who are left behind, but their death is “Precious in the sight of the Lord” too! That shows that God also feels our pain from the great loss that we’ve experienced when loving a loved one to death. Remember, Jesus was a Man of many sorrows, well acquainted with our griefs and sorrows (Psalm 8:1-6; Isaiah 53:3; Heb 4:14-16), so even though the ones we love are precious in our sight, they are also precious in God’s sight. That’s why we must share Christ to bring others into a precious, saving relationship with God that only comes through Jesus Christ (John 6:44; Acts 4:12).


If you have never trusted in Jesus Christ, read what awaits you after death (Rev 20:12-15; 21:8) because if you’ve never believed, you will be judged after your death (Heb 9:27) or at His appearance (Dan 12:1-3; Rev 1:8, 20:12-15). That is why it is critical that you trust in Him today, while it’s still called “today” (2 Cor 6:2). Tomorrow might not even come for you, or the Lord could come today and it would be too late to believe in Him. Trust in Him today and He will be your Savior; reject Him today and He will be your Judge. That is something that I would not wish on anyone. A future so bad that words alone cannot describe (Rev 20).

Here is some related reading for you: 6 Christian Funeral Prayers and Scriptures

Resource – Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), Crossway Bibles. (2007). ESV: Study Bible: English standard version. Wheaton, Ill: Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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