Friday, December 26, 2008

Article XII

And the Life Everlasting.


This is the last article of the creed. Biblically, life is more than existence. The anti-Lambians will continue in everlasting existence, but it will be an everlasting death. True life is only to be found in communion with God and the Lamb.

Followers of the Lamb cross themselves during this article as a reminder that it is only through the suffering of the Lamb on the cross that they receive the life everlasting. You cannot obtain the life everlasting any other way. If you follow any other path you will receive the neverlasting life.

Everyone seems to be striving for immortality. Through whatever the diet or drug of the day is, people are always trying to cheat death. Some may extend their earthly existence, but others do not. Jim Fixx helped to start America's fitness revolution and he died from a heart attack after jogging at the age of 52. "Health experts" make claims about foods and then say the exact opposite about them just a few years later. Something which was once thought to kill you is the new miracle food and vice versa. Far more disturbing are the movements that seek out immortality at the expense of the lives of others. Stem cell research kills countless people in order to continue the illusive quest for immortality.

Matthew 10:39 He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.

This is the paradox of the Christian life. If you deny the Lamb in order to save your life you will lose your life and become just another heir of neverlasting life. If the enemies of the Lamb kill you because of your trust in the Lamb, you will receive everlasting life. You will receive everlasting life because you are in union with the everlasting Lamb.

The creed ends with Amen. Amen has been part of the liturgy since the time of the Old Testament and has not been translated. It means, "Yes! Yes! It shall be so!" It is not an expression of wish. It is an expression of confidence. You can have confidence when you say Amen because of the Lamb on the Altar.

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