Bible readings for funerals. (2023)


organization of a funeral

For those who follow the Christian faith, Bible passages for funeral readings can be an important part of worship. While funeral prayers and scriptures have always been part of a traditional Christian funeral, many services are heldnot religiousBurial places also use funeral bible verses or funeral prayers as part of the service. Bible readings for funerals can add structure and meaning to a service and help support the family and friends of the deceased in their grief.

Bible verses for funerals and mourning prayers help recognize the loss of someone and offer comfort to those who are grieving the loss of a friend or family member. Read on to see our selection of suitable funeral Bible readings, categorized as follows:

  • What are the most popular funeral Bible readings?
  • Long Bible Readings for Funerals
  • Short Bible Readings for Funerals
  • psalms for funerals
  • popular funeral prayers
  • catholic prayers

What are the most popular funeral Bible readings?

There are a wide variety of funeral bible verses to choose from and which one you choose will depend entirely on the message you want to convey to your guests and the message you want them to take away from it. Read our selection of some funeral bible verses you might want to read at your loved one's funeral.

Romans 8:35, 37-39

Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will it be misery, fear, persecution, hunger, nakedness, danger or the sword? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor principalities, neither present nor future, nor powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

João 14:1-3

Don't let her get upset. You believe in God; believe me too. My father's house has many rooms; If it were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And when I go to prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you with me so that you can be where I am.

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Ecclesiastes 3:1-4

There is a time for everything, and a time for everything under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time Time to cry and time to laugh, time to cry and time to dance...

1 Thessalonians 4:14-17

For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, God will also bring those who slept with Jesus. Therefore we declare to you by the word of the Lord that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will not precede those who are asleep.

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with the voice of command, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we, the living, the remnant, will be caught up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord.

Good 19:23-27

Ah, if my words were written!
Oh that they were written in a book!
carved in a rock
With a feather of iron and lead - forever!
Because I know that my Redeemer lives
And he will finally rise on earth;
And after my skin is destroyed I know it
that in my flesh I will see God
who am i going to see
And my eyes will see, and no other.
How my heart yearns within me!

Long Bible Readings for Funerals

Are you looking for long and meaningful funeral bible verses? Or are you considering more unusual Bible readings for funerals? The following reading may be appropriate for what you are looking for:

Revelation 21:1-7

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared like a bride prepared for her husband.

And I heard a loud voice say from the throne: Behold, the dwelling of God is among mortals. he will dwell with them; they will be his people, and God himself will be with them; He will wipe every tear from your eyes. Death will be no more; there will be no more mourning or crying or pain, because the first things have passed away.”

And he who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new." He also said, "Write this, for these words are faithful and true." Then he said to me: “It is finished! I am the alpha and the omega, the beginning and the end. To those who are thirsty I will give a gift of water from the fountain of the water of life. Those who overcome will inherit these things and I will be their God and they will be my children.

Short Bible Readings for Funerals

There are often multiple funeral Bible verses that are read by family members or friends at a traditional funeral. If you plan to have a few people read or are looking for short Bible readings for funerals, the following passages have been selected and may be the perfect length for your ceremony:

Mateus 11:28-30 See More

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. It is light for my yoke and light for my burden.

João 3:16

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

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João 11:25

Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live.

Philippians 1:21-23

For me to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I must live in the flesh, that means fruitful work for me. I still can't say which one I'm going to choose. I'm torn between the two. My desire is to go away and be with Christ, because that is so much better.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those who are in any trouble with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God .

Isaiah 57:1-2

The righteous perish, and no one takes it seriously; the godly are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be delivered from evil.

Those who walk in integrity enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death.

psalms for funerals

Salmo 23

The Lord is my shepherd; I won't miss anything.

In green pastures he lets me rest; He leads me beside still waters.

He restores my soul; He will guide me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
Yes, even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; because you are with me; Your staff and your staff comfort me.

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup is overflowing

Truly goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and in the house of the Lord I will dwell long days.

Salmo 46

God is our hope and strength,
quick help with problems.

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So we will not be afraid even if the earth moves,
and when the hills are brought into the midst of the sea;

Though its waters roar and toss,
and though the mountains tremble before his storm.

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the sanctuary of the tabernacle of the Most High.

God is in the middle, so he is not removed;
God will help her, and very soon.

So be still and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations and I will be exalted on earth.

The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our refuge.

popular funeral prayers

While many people choose to have Bible readings for funerals, it is also common to use folk prayers as part of the service. Here is a selection to choose from:

The Lord's Prayer

Our father that is in heaven,
Blessed be his name;
thy kingdom come;
Your will will happen;
on earth as in heaven.

Our daily bread Give us this day.
and forgive us our transgressions,
how we forgive those who offend us.
And let us not be tempted;
But deliver us from evil.

for yours is the kingdom
the power and the glory
forever and ever.

A man.

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Almighty God, in his great love

Almighty God, in his great love
Almighty God, in his great love
Almighty God, in his great love
you created us with your hand
and you gave us life through your Spirit.

Though we have become a rebellious people
You have not abandoned us to our sin.

in your tender mercy
you sent your son
on us to restore your image.

In obedience to your will
He gave his life for us
bear our sins in his body on the cross.

through your great power
You raised him from the grave
and raised him to the throne of glory.

happy with your victory
and trust your promise
to give life to all who turn to Christ,
we entrust to your mercy
and we join all your faithful
and all the society of heaven
in the only endless song of praise:
glory and wisdom and honor
be our God forever and ever.

A man.

catholic prayers

Eternal rest grant them, O Lord,
and perpetual light shine upon them.

May the souls of believers be gone
By the mercy of God rest in peace.

A man.


What is a good Bible verse for losing a loved one? ›

Psalm 34:18 “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Psalm 73:26 “My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.” Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.”

Which Bible reading is often read during a funeral Mass? ›

Romans 14:7-9

“Brothers and sisters: No one lives for oneself, and no one dies for oneself. For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord; so then, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's…”

What is a good Bible verse for a celebration of life? ›

John 3:16. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." (NIV) This well-loved verse is used at many funerals to remind believers of the existence of the afterlife in Heaven and God's love and sacrifice.

Is 1 Corinthians 13 suitable for a funeral? ›

These words are often heard at weddings, not at funerals. But they are just as appropriate.

What is a good scripture for peace and comfort? ›

Philippians 4:6-7

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

What is the most comforting scripture? ›

2 Corinthians 1:1-4

3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

How do you pick a reading for a funeral? ›

When choosing music or readings for a funeral, reading the lyrics or text in full beforehand can help you fully understand the meaning of the song or text. If you have a funeral director or religious leader, they may be able to give you guidance on what to include.

What do they read at funerals family? ›

Psalms are among the most famous religious readings. Psalm 23, for example, is often used as a funeral reading.

What do you read at a person's funeral? ›

Aside from a formal eulogy, there are many opportunities to speak at a funeral. Many people say prayers, recite poems, or tell stories about the person who died. If there are any special readings or anecdotes that you'd like to have shared at the funeral, think about whom you would like to deliver those.

What can I say instead of celebration of life? ›

What to Say at a Celebration of Life Service
  • You set eternity in my heart.
  • You are loved more than you'll ever know - Romans 5:8.
  • There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind - C.S. Lewis.
  • Hope is the only thing stronger than fear.

What is the most impactful Bible verse? ›

"He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. And he who was seated on the throne said, Behold, I am making all things new".

What is a good Scripture in the Old Testament for a funeral? ›

Old Testament Readings

Ecclesiastes 3.1-8 - "... A time to be born, a time to die..." Ezekiel 37.12-14 - "O my people, I will open your graves and have you rise..." Isaiah 25.6a, 7-9 - "...he will destroy death forever..."

Where in the Bible does it say you can't be cremated at death? ›

In 2 Kings 23:16-20, Josiah took the bones out of the tomb, burned them on the altar, and “defiled it.” However, nowhere in the Old Testament does the Bible command the deceased cannot be burned, nor are there any judgments attached to those that have been cremated.

Is Psalm 121 appropriate for a funeral? ›

Continuing the psalms for funerals series with Psalm 121. (Note – we're not going in numerical order.) If you live in an area with big hills or mountains that catch your attention on a daily basis, consider Psalm 121. This psalm can give you a regular dose of inspiration and comfort.

What is prayer of comfort in the Bible? ›

Lord, You love me and by Your grace have given me eternal comfort and a wonderful hope. Now, comfort and strengthen me in every good thing I do and say.”

What is the most encouraging psalm in the Bible? ›

Psalm 23:1–6 -

"God, You are my shepherd, I lack nothing. You make me lie down in green pastures, You lead me beside still waters, You restore my soul. You lead me in paths of righteousness for Your name's sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me!

What does the Bible say about seeing loved ones in heaven? ›

The reunion of believing loved ones

When Paul writes to believers who grieve the loss of a loved one, he offers them this comfort: “We who are still alive will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air” (1 Thessalonians 4:17, emphasis mine).

Do you reunite with your spouse in heaven? ›


A. Yes to both. The reunion will take place, but not as husband and wife. We learn this in Jesus' explanation to the Sadducees: "When people rise from death, there will be no marriage.

What is a good second reading for a funeral? ›

Let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love, does not know God, for God is love. God's love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through Him.

How many readings do you have at a funeral? ›

A funeral or memorial service typically uses between two to four readings throughout the ceremony. Funeral and memorial readings can also be used in printed memorial materials, such as funeral programs, funeral or memorial prayer cards, and acknowledgement cards.

What is first reading for funeral Mass? ›

The Lord will wipe away the tears from every cheek; he will take away his people's shame everywhere on earth, for the Lord has said so. That day, it will be said: See, this is our God in whom we hoped for salvation; the Lord is the one in whom we hoped. We exult and we rejoice that he has saved us.

What is a good message to preach at a funeral? ›

We are gathered here today to honor and remember [name of deceased]. During this time of pain and suffering, we find comfort in sharing stories and remembering the life of [name of deceased]. At this point, depending on the wishes of the family, you can provide the opportunity for other funeral speakers to participate.

How do you read at a funeral without crying? ›

Tips for Getting Through a Funeral Speech
  1. Look at your speech like an opportunity. ...
  2. Preparation is key. ...
  3. Listen to your heart. ...
  4. Don't worry about getting emotional. ...
  5. Have a glass of water and some tissues handy. ...
  6. Memorise parts of the speech. ...
  7. Think about eye contact. ...
  8. Don't rush through it.

What should you not do at a funeral? ›

10 Things NOT to Do at a Funeral
  • 10 Things Not to Do at a Funeral. ...
  • Don't be late. ...
  • Don't dress for a club, party, or the beach. ...
  • Don't let your phone ring, chime, or ding. ...
  • Don't text, surf, or otherwise be glued to your cellphone. ...
  • Don't forget the purpose of the occasion. ...
  • Don't cause a scene.

How do you honor a loved one at a funeral? ›

9 Ways to Honor a Loved One Who Has Passed
  1. Keep something of theirs with you. ...
  2. Support a cause close to their heart, and yours. ...
  3. Make a tribute donation to a nonprofit. ...
  4. Create a living reminder. ...
  5. Dedicate an event to their memory. ...
  6. Start a new tradition. ...
  7. Share their stories and photos. ...
  8. Live your best life.
Feb 3, 2018

What should I read at my dad's funeral? ›

21 Beautiful funeral poems for Dad
  • Happy the Man - John Dryden.
  • If - Rudyard Kipling.
  • Daddy's Hands - Holly Dunn.
  • Not How Did He Die - Summer Sandercox.
  • He is Gone - David Harkins.
  • That Man is a Success - Robert Louis Stevenson.
  • A Poem for Dad - J. Allen Shaw.
  • Dad - Anonymous.

What is the person who speaks at a funeral called? ›

This person is called the officiant. If your loved one was involved in a religion, the clergy from his or her church may be the logical choice.

Who usually speaks at a funeral? ›

There is no hard and fast rule as to who should give the eulogy speech at a funeral. It's typically given by those who were particularly close, or had a special relationship with, the loved one who passed. It could be a best friend, a spouse, a child or grandchild, or even a co-worker.

How do you say goodbye at a funeral? ›

Here are other ways of saying goodbye if you're able to attend the funeral.
How to Say Goodbye to the Deceased If You Can Attend the Funeral
  1. Attend the viewing. One of the last opportunities you get to see your loved one may be at the viewing. ...
  2. Donate toward final expenses. ...
  3. Plan a memorial. ...
  4. Write a short eulogy. ...
  5. Sing a song.
Apr 28, 2022

What are the three powerful prayers? ›

The prayer of protection. The prayer of transformation. The prayer of restoration.

What is a powerful Bible verse? ›

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."

What are strong words from the Bible? ›

"Be strong and take heart, all who hope in the Lord." "Give thanks to the Lord for He is good: His love endures forever." "For the Lord takes delight in His people; He crowns the humble and salvation." "God promises to make something good out of the storms that bring devastation to your life."

What is a good psalm for grief? ›

Psalm 46:1-2

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.

What prayer to say for someone who lost a loved one? ›

Bless those who mourn, eternal God, with the comfort of your love that they may face each new day with hope and the certainty that nothing can destroy the good that has been given. May their memories become joyful, their days enriched with friendship, and their lives encircled by your love.

Is there any comfort Bible verse? ›

2 Corinthians 1:3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

What is the prayer of comfort? ›

Lord, You love me and by Your grace have given me eternal comfort and a wonderful hope. Now, comfort and strengthen me in every good thing I do and say.”

Which prayer is a prayer of sorrow? ›

My God, I am sorry for my sins with all my heart. In choosing to do wrong and failing to do good, I have sinned against you whom I should love above all things. I firmly intend, with your help to do penance, to sin no more and to avoid whatever leads me to sin.

How do you pray for grief comfort? ›

I am mourning; send me Your comfort now. Wrap around Your arms around me and hold me tight. Send angels of mercy to me. Shower Your comfort on me through those around me, and keep far from me those whose words and actions are no comfort.

What to say to someone who lost a loved one spiritual? ›

Religious Sympathy Messages
  • I am praying for you to find healing through the Lord's love. ...
  • Our deepest sympathies and prayers are with you through this loss. ...
  • We are deeply saddened by your loss. ...
  • “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” – ...
  • “The God of love and peace shall be with you.” –

How do you say rest in peace for someone who lost a loved one? ›

Other ways to say “rest in peace”
  1. Your uncle was an inspiration to us all. ...
  2. May Cindy rest in power. ...
  3. Your friend will be missed by many. ...
  4. I'll always remember your son's kind heart and a strong sense of compassion. ...
  5. I'm so glad I had the opportunity to get to know and love your aunt.
May 30, 2022

What does the Bible say about cremation? ›

In 2 Kings 23:16-20, Josiah took the bones out of the tomb, burned them on the altar, and “defiled it.” However, nowhere in the Old Testament does the Bible command the deceased cannot be burned, nor are there any judgments attached to those that have been cremated.


1. Bible Verses for Grief & Condolence
(Kim T Holmberg)
2. Bible Verses for Funerals: Matthew 5
(Good Word Readings - Topic)
3. Biblical Scripture for Funeral Services
(Young's Daughters Funeral Home & Bereavement Center)
4. Funeral Messages That Touched Me
(Kari the Mortician)
5. George Floyd Funeral: New Testament Reading
(WCCO - CBS Minnesota)
6. Scripture Reading Steve McNair Memorial


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