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Monday, May 12, 2008

A philosophical problem

What if there was a way to really have physical immortality?

Would you want that? Would you choose to accept it?

What if you wound up with immortality, and found out too late that it was more a curse than it was a blessing? Would you then spend the rest of your existence trying to find a way to be mortal again?

Three thoughts on the subject: the first is that immortality is possible but it's not something meant for this material realm. 1st Corinthians 15:50 teaches us that "Flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God". I'm now taking this to mean that physical immortality in the state of matter as we know it is something fully counter to God's intended order for the cosmos and concordantly, the pursuit of such a condition would be abomination. What then would be the ramifications of actually achieving this very thing?

The second is that the moment a person might become immortal, he or she would cease to be a part of the human narrative and experience, and would become something completely unnatural and alien.

And of course the most damning thing of all about immortality: it would probably happen in such a way that you could not let others share the "gift", and if there are a lot of people in your life then you would be condemned to watch them all pass away, to whatever is waiting on the other side, while you have to remain here and never be able to join them. Your own life without real fear of having to ever taste death, weighed against ultimately being alone and never seeing your loved ones again...

Would you choose to live for yourself in this carnal plane until the end of the Earth, or would you choose to die in the course of time and so ultimately move on, to where the ones you care about are waiting?


Anonymous said...

Odd line of questioning, even from you Chris. Mind letting us in on what this is about?

qemuel said...

Hell is repetition. 'Nuff said.

Anonymous said...

I do believe that God intended there to be "flesh" in Heaven, or that flesh could be immortal. When Adam was created, he was flesh and bone (Genesis 2:23), but the problem is the blood, which I don't believe he obtained until the Fall. If he did, it was clean blood, untainted by sin. When Christ (who while being 100% God, was also 100% man) showed Himself to the eleven after going to the Father, He still had flesh, but no blood is mentioned.

By 1 Corinthians 15, mankind's flesh and blood has long since been sinful and corrupt. Verse 51 states, "... we shall all be changed." Our sinful flesh must be dealt with (i.e. v53, "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.")

That said, I don't believe God would ever let mankind achieve the knowledge of physical immortality. The answer to physical immortality is the Tree of Life. "... Behold, man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever ..." (Genesis 3:22). That's the real reason Adam and Eve had to be put out of Eden. God could not let man in a fallen state eat of that tree.

I believe wholeheartedly that that Tree is the only way to attain physical immortality, and I don't believe it's on this earth anymore. It doesn't make another appearance until New Jerusalem where it bears "twelve manner of fruits, and [yields] her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations."

Anyway, physical, earthly immortality seems kind of overrated to me as this earth is going to burn up eventually. Even if I didn't believe that, and someone found a way, I wouldn't chance it. There may be a glimmer of hope for this world now, but it seems the powers that be in this world don't want hope, especially not hope for us. I would want to spare myself the disappointment -- and the temptations that are sure to be available if this place went on another hundreds or thousands of years.

Listening for that Trumpet,

Anonymous said...

Like TGSLMIKE said, this is a weird thing to be asking about. You didn't find a way to be immortal did you Chris??