Thursday, October 9, 2014

"City of God" XX.5-6

Chapter 5-6:
So we see Jesus in the Gospels being quite clear that there will be a resurrection and final judgment for all mankind.
Technically, the New Testament speaks of two resurrections: the first is for believers who are dead in sins and brought to life by the Holy Spirit:
Thus all, without one exception, were dead in sins, whether original or voluntary sins, sins of ignorance, or sins committed against knowledge; and for all the dead there died the one only person who lived, that is, who had no sin whatever, in order that they who live by the remission of their sins should live, not to themselves, but to Him who died for all, for our sins, and rose again for our justification, that we, believing in Him who justifies the ungodly, and being justified from ungodliness or quickened from death, may be able to attain to the first resurrection which now is.  For in this first resurrection none have a part save those who shall be eternally blessed; but in the second, of which He goes on to speak, all, as we shall learn, have a part, both the blessed and the wretched.  The one is the resurrection of mercy, the other of judgment. 
The second resurrection, then, is for everyone whereas the first is for believers alone. This is tied to the idea that there are two regenerations, the first which happens when we come to faith and baptism (Augustine shows an early version of the view that baptism causes regeneration, but could be read charitably to assume that it just attends regeneration, unlike his later followers who dig themselves into greater error) and the second which happens when we are raised from the dead and given perfected bodies.

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