Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Would Christ Have Lived Forever if Not Crucified?

This is an excerpt from my comment on Taylor Marshall's discussion of Mary's painless delivery of Christ.

We know that death, the ultimate penalty of original sin, was suffered by Christ and traditionally Mary as well.

Objection 1: Christ was murdered, He did not die a "natural" death and would not have.

Reply to Objection: The way in which "Natural death" causes men to die is no less physical than that way in which Christ died. In the case of the latter, motion causes vital bodily functions to cease and in the case of the former, motion which is necessary to sustain vital bodily functions ceases.


Amy said...

Would He have lived forever if not crucified? I think that's a misleading question. He *does* live forever, and He died so that we can, too. Part of the reason He became Incarnate was to die for us, to take on the penalty of sin, going back to the Original Sin.

God is the author of life, and the only reason Jesus died was because He allowed it to happen; He allowed it to happen because it was His hour, the hour chosen by the Father.

Tim A. Troutman said...

Amy, I don't think the question is misleading (trivial maybe) because it is a question of the effects of original sin and is not really interested in the particulars of Christ and His death (which if any death ever was unique, His was).

If we consider His divinity, the question then starts to take a different direction. Presently, we're not interested in what happens to gods when they become men mostly because that has only happened once and will not happen again. We're just pondering what happens when men (or women) are sinless in a sinful world.

Thos said...


Has the Church made a conclusion on this that you are aware of? I'm not sure why, but I have imagined that (as abstract as this is) Christ would have died of natural causes. It seems to fit with his needing rest, feeling hunger, weeping, experiencing temptation. To have the common experience of humanity, would he not have experienced the physical aches and pains of our humanity? And those follow from our existence in bodies prone to entropy. The biological consideration is the scientific fact that cells have a life-span -- they break down over time, and do not perpetually regenerate. If He was in a body free from those things, it seems like He was conquering a different (entropy-free) kind of death.

But I'm speculating, and readily would submit my judgment to greater minds that have ruled on it.

Peace in Christ -- Merry Christmas!,

Tim A. Troutman said...

Thos, I am not aware of any definitive stance on this from the Church. I have a strong suspicion that there isn't any but I could be wrong!

K-Dogg said...

hi Tim, just visiting. this is a great unimportant question! this is fun to think about, and i would think that Christ would have just kept on living had he not been crucified. after all, the wages of sin is death, and Jesus never sinned. however, i don't think Jesus would have come had he not known what was to happen to him. his purpose was carried out on the cross.

Tim A. Troutman said...

K-Dogg, thanks for stopping by. I see you're a fan of Ravi Z. Great speaker!