Skip to content


“Our Savior Jesus Christ . . . has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Tim. 1:10).

“Forever with the Lord!” Amen! so let it be. Life from the dead is in that word, ‘Tis immortality. (TLH 616:1)

The glorious fate of Christian immortality, that is, the eternal life in that heavenly abode with God beyond this temporal existence, is a blessed truth that sounds forth at this time of year. The many different Easter texts proclaimed from the Christian pulpit and the festival hymns sung from the church pew draw our attention to this wondrous future for believers in Jesus Christ.

This is as it should be. At Easter time the Christian church celebrates Jesus’ bodily resurrection from the grave on the third day after His sacrificial death on the cross. Jesus assured us in Holy Scripture that His resurrection means immortality for us. He said: “Because I live, you will live also” (Jn. 14:19).

Because Jesus lives victorious beyond the grave in eternity, so also will all who embrace Him by faith.

Christians are not the only ones in this world who entertain the thought of immortality. Both the religious and the irreligious have set their sights on gaining immortality. The many different non-Christian religions from ancient times to the present have held a belief of a never-ending life after death.

What is sad and even tragic about all these other beliefs is that their hope of a blissful eternal life is based upon their own ability to overcome sin and death. Since “the wages of sin is death (temporal, spiritual, and eternal death)” (Rom. 6:23a), how can anyone hope to be able to pay this costly price by one’s own feeble efforts?

An ancient belief of immorality that is gaining in popularity is reincarnation. This is the vain notion of a person repeatedly dying and his soul returning to this world in a different form. What a wretched thought–having to face the cruel enemy of death over and over again and returning each time to this sin-cursed world!

Christ — The Firstfruits

The irreligious are hoping to beat death and gain immortality through medical means. They are trying to stop the aging process and to replace worn-out body parts so that man can continue to live on indefinitely.

Why would unbelievers want to live on forever in this vale of tears except to escape the divine judgment of everlasting punishment in hell? No mortal–be he ever so ingenious–is capable of overcoming the deadly hold that sin has on him, for the Bible declares: “Through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Rom. 5:12).

Our hope of obtaining a blissful, immortal existence is not based on our own efforts at conquering sin and death. Rather, this hope is based upon the substitutionary life, death, and resurrection of our Savior Jesus.

Paul wrote to Timothy that Jesus “has abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel” (2 Tim. 1:10). The life-giving gospel of Christ reveals that Jesus removed the sting of death, namely sin, by suffering death in atonement for all our sin, and that He rose triumphant from the grave. Thus He became the firstfruits–all believers will be raised from the grave in immortal form on the last day (1 Cor. 15).

Jesus’ death and resurrection have made it possible for the paradisical life which Adam and Eve once enjoyed at the beginning of time to be restored in the glorious life to come. On the last day when believers are raised from the grave, they will be living for eternity on a new, perfected earth in which righteousness dwells (cf. 1 Pet. 3:10-13; Is. 65:17-19).

When Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in me shall never die” (Jn. 11:25-26), He was assuring us of a blissful life of immortality which He alone can give.

–Pastor Mark Gullerud