We Shall Not Die, But Live

The LORD has disciplined me severely, but He has not given me over to death.
PSALM 118:18
We Shall Not Die, But Live
We should recognize this verse as a masterpiece. How mightily the psalmist banishes death out of sight! He will know nothing of dying and of sin. At the same time he visualizes life most vividly and will hear of nothing but life. But whoever will not see death, lives forever, as Christ says: "If anyone keeps My Word, he will never see death" (John 8:51). He so immerses himself in life that death is swallowed up by life (1 Corinthians 15:55) and disappears completely, because he clings with a firm faith to the right hand of God. Thus all the saints have sung this verse and will continue to sing it to the end. We note this especially in the case of the martyrs. So far as the world is concerned, they die. Yet their hearts say with a firm faith: "I shall not die, but live."

From Commentary on Psalm 118 (Luther's Works 14:87)
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