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Life Everlasting.

Life Everlasting.

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Published by GLENN DALE PEASE
REV. JOHN CUTHBERT HEDLEY, O.S.B.,

" The Jerusalem which is above is free ; which is our
mother" (Gal. iv. 26).
REV. JOHN CUTHBERT HEDLEY, O.S.B.,

" The Jerusalem which is above is free ; which is our
mother" (Gal. iv. 26).

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Published by: GLENN DALE PEASE on Mar 12, 2014
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LIFE EVERLASTING. REV. JOHN CUTHBERT HEDLEY, O.S.B.," The Jerusalem which is above is free ; which is our mother" (Gal. iv. 26). THERE is no page of Holy Scripture which does not contrast the visible with the invisible, the temporal with the eternal, the earth below with the heavens above. In this passage of St. Paul we hear him compare the city of this world with the city of our everlasting hopes ; this world, in its narrowness and its slavery, with Heaven, where there is to be free dom, peace, and happiness, such as it is very difficult for any human heart to picture or even to conceive. Let us follow the Apostle In the contemplation of this great theme, and let us lift ourselves up to the thoughts of heavenly bliss. Whatever raises the heart above these distracting and engrossing scenes below above the common and poor elements of our daily life makes for the advantage and the happi ness of men. For it is for the future that we are made ; and to keep the eye upon the future, and to restrain the affections from the present, this is our
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human end and purpose ; and if it is what we are made for, it is what we should glory in. There is no truth more clearly taught by Our Lord LIFE EVERLASTING. 121 than the dogma of " Life Everlasting." There is no truth which is more explicitly a part of our own belief. " In the world to come, everlasting life," is the promise of Jesus to those who have followed Him. 1 " He that heareth My word hath life ever lasting." 2 This word " everlasting " is especially a word of the New Testament. It is not exclusively so, as I shall mention later on. But the frequency with which Our Lord uses it shows that He lays great stress upon it. It was the word which was required in order to complete God s holy revelation as to the state after death. For that revelation had been in creasing in clearness all through the Old Testament. There are some learned commentators on the Bible who pretend that even the Jews, in the early period
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of their history, did not know of a future life. Nothing could be more misleading. What was the primitive revelation ? It was this that those who had committed the primal sin of disobedience should " die the death." 3 Adam and Eve did not understand this of physical death. Doubtless the death or dis solution of the body was a part of the punishment of the original sin. But, if you observe, there is another, and a quite distinct, result of that sin most explicitly mentioned in the sacred narrative. After the verses in which the respective punishments of the serpent, of the woman, and of the man are described, the last words of which are, " Dust thou art, and unto dust thou shalt return," 4 there comes this mysterious an-1 Luke xviii. 30. 2 John v. 24. 3 Gen. ii. 17. 4 Ib. iii. 19. 122 LIFE EVERLASTING. nouncement : " And God said : Behold Adam is become one of us, knowing good and evil ; now, therefore, lest perhaps he put forth his hand and take
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