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Eternal Life

Eternal Life

I want to look at this concept of “eternal life”, which is, in my opinion, often expressed too casually in Christian circles.  To be fair, some idea of life after death has persisted in many religions throughout history.  And Jesus spoke with such confidence about an afterlife that his followers have come to accept rather easily that eternal life complete with pearly gates and streets of gold is a concept that should ring true with everyone.  

However, I get the feeling that Jesus was trying to describe something that really goes far beyond the imagination of the average person, and which he could only describe in terms which would do little more than hint at the truth, i.e. that this “life” he offers us is wonderful beyond comparison to anything that we have experienced in our lifetime.

Einstein, who was also a believer in God, revolutionised a lot of scientific theory about the material world, showing that matter can be changed to energy, and even that time is a concept that does not cover everything that we know about our existence.  It is very difficult for the average person to imagine something, for example, “outside” the universe or “before” the universe began.  Words like infinity and eternity tend to still come across to us like endless extensions of what we already know.  I am certainly such a person.

It makes “perfect sense” to me, for instance, that it is no easier to explain “Who made God?” than it is to explain “Who made the universe?” and so any Christian argument which ends with “In the beginning, God…” seems a little unfair, given that we criticise the evolutionists for never dealing with things like “Who made the Big Bang?”  

But lately, and particularly after watching the movie “Interstellar”, I have started to think a little more deeply about these things.  What “Interstellar” did was to suggest that Black Holes may be gateways into eternity.  For the first time I saw Eternity as an entirely new dimension, not just a lot of what we already know now going on and on.  There is this other dimension which is not only impervious to time, but also impervious to space.  Eternity exists right now, but right now (as we know it) is not a PART of Eternity.  Right now as WE know it is temporal, i.e. outside of Eternity.

I thought about the concept of the New Jerusalem, as I described it in “Survivors”.  It was a huge pyramid-shaped planet that just suddenly attached itself to earth.  Inside the pyramid there was no need for the sun, because God himself is the Light.

Now what if that pyramid took the place of the Black Hole in “Interstellar”?  What if our entry into the New Jerusalem brings us into contact with the incredible Light and Force that created the entire universe… a whole new dimension of sights and sounds and smells and pleasure that makes us literally one with the Creator himself?  What if that union is all that he has been wanting for us since Adam and Eve?  And what if that amazing Force is not just powerful, but is also incredibly personable, knowing every detail of our existence here on earth, and having overseen it all from the start of creation?

It may also be related to me turning 70 recently, and feeling just that little bit closer to finding out for myself what lies out there.  I know that, for a little while after I turned 70, I entertained thoughts about possibly having it all wrong and being disappointed; whereas now I think I may have had it a bit wrong, but only because it’s so many times more wonderful than anything I had been able to imagine previously.

Even now I know that the way I’m describing this is not going to turn most people on the way it has turned me on in the past few months, but, by the same token, talk of streets paved with gold doesn’t do much for me (and perhaps for others) once I saw through the whole “love of gold” mentality as Jesus taught it.  Gold speaks to a world that is obsessed with such things, to get their attention long enough that we might gradually be able to get them to appreciate the indescribable joys of being one with God in another dimension called Eternity.

I would hope that a few people who think that religion is contrary to science could at least consider the amazing spiritual possibilities in stuff that Einstein discovered and described with regard to light, energy, time, and space.

Because if there really is a dimension called Eternity, then it provides an answer that has always been missing in evolutionary theory.  There is, indeed, a first Cause, which answers to no one in our finite existence.  He made the entire Universe, and he did it through the power which he wields in a place called Eternity.  Where is there anything to match that in evolutionary theory?

For God so loved this world that he gave his only Son, so that anyone who believes in him should not perish, but should have eternal life!  Even so, Come, Lord Jesus!
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