God Engraves Himself Into Us
A prophet in France - Stroke of the Holy Spirit
Early Christian View Of Life After
In ways that we find baffling today, Christians of the early church were convinced that life after death required a body. This was a fundamental disagreement between proto-orthodox Christians and gnostic Christians. For the gnostics, nothing was more desirable than the eventual liberation of the soul from its physical encumbrance of a body. Church fathers like Irenaeus and Tertullian, however, were adamant that without flesh, there is no person to overcome death, because a human being, in this life and the next, is an intermingled soul and body
Does God have the power to bring us back?
The view developed among the Fathers that just as God made Adam from dust, God can reconstitute a body from its smallest material bits, and thereby recover the person with identity intact, complete with her peculiar memories and even the precious scars of her martyrdom etched upon her resurrected body.2 In the Talmud, one of the rabbis suggests that our iniquities are engraved into our bones, an indelible, telltale moral record of how we conducted ourselves through the lives that were given to us.
In a recent issue of National Geographic, an article entitled “Lost Tribes of the Green Sahara” describes how archaeologists unearthed some 200 graves near a vanished lake that indicated the Sahara was once a fertile area. The skeletons buried there disclosed amazing information about two groups of people who had lived at least a thousand years apart. The bones and teeth unearthed from the graves revealed the sex, age, general health, diet, diseases, injuries, and habits of the deceased. The size and condition of the bones gave clues to lifestyles, work, and living conditions of the inhabitants.