“ I don’t want immortality through my movies, I want immortality through not dying” — Woody Allen.
When God breathed the breath of life into man’s nostrils, the man became a living creature1, created in the image of God.2 Does this mean that God started a chain of events that guaranteed that Man would necessarily continue forever someplace?
Do we have a natural immortality?
Either heaven or hell? That Man, like God, was now immortal? Eternal? Maybe even a little Divine? No, of course not. There are many attributes of God that are not passed down to Man in Creation. Omnipresence. Omniscience. Nowhere does Scripture indicate that Man is immortal post-fall. In fact Scripture tells us just the opposite. That Man’s immortality is conditional on faith in Jesus Christ:
- That God alone is immortal.(1Timothy 6:15,16)
- And those who persist to seek “glory, honour and immortality”(God) He will give eternal life. (Romans2:7)
- Seek the Lord and live. (Amos 5:6)
- That life and immortality are brought to light through the Gospel.(2 Timothy 1:10)
- More specifically, the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (John 17:2,3)
A friend of mine is fond of saying “Well, there’s only one of two places he can be now” when he hears of somebody’s death. I know what he’s trying to do. He’s trying to get people to think of their own final destination. We do the same. We say someone has passed away, passed on, is no longer with us; as if they slipped into the other room in full consciousness and is already locked in that particular room forever. This presupposes three things that Scripture does not teach:
- that eternal judgement is personal and is performed upon each individual’s death separately and instantaneously
- that the place the individual finds himself in at the moment of death is the same place he will spend eternity
- that there is no need for the general resurrection.
The general resurrection (John 5:25-29) and Day of Judgement of the living and the dead (Acts 10:42, 1Peter 4:5) are important.
- Gen 2:7
- Gen 1:27