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by Wayne Blank
Humans are mortal, a word derived from the Latin mortalis, meaning death. God could have created humans as immortal right from the start, as He did with the angels, so that we could live on and on forever no matter what, but He didn't. God deliberately created us so that we can die, totally die, for the same reason that computers can delete corrupt or malicious files. Those who choose to repent and obey God, on His terms, will be made immortal, never again subject to illness, injury or death, while those who choose to rebel and defy God will be completely erased forever (see Resurrections).
The people of the Old Testament were well aware of the human potential for immortality:
"Thou dost guide me with Thy counsel, and afterward Thou wilt receive me to glory." (Psalm 73:24 RSV)
With the coming of Jesus Christ, the means of finding immortality was made more clear:
"the power of God, Who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not in virtue of our works but in virtue of His own purpose and the grace which He gave us in Christ Jesus ages ago, and now has manifested through the appearing of our Savior Christ Jesus, Who abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel." (2 Timothy 1:8-10 RSV)
Fact Finder: Can humans be granted eternal life just by having faith alone?