And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the
garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil,
for when you eat of it you will surely die."
Genesis 2: 16-17 tells us that death is the result of a single act of disobedience to God, what we call sin. And what brings this post about? One of my church members has recently passed away of a heart condition; she was a member of my parents' cell group as well, so there was a certain degree of closeness there. And she was also close to my parents' age, so you can imagine that mortality is very much on my mind right now, selfish man that I am.
Our Catholic brethren would have it that this immortality or undyingness that existed in the Graden of Eden was preternatural; i.e. given by the grace of God and withdrawn from the baseline 'natural' man when he committed sin. A form of 'plug-in immortality', if you will. I don't buy it. Because nature is also by the grace of God; if He did not create the universe and all that is within it, we won't be here to discuss anything. Besides, we know God created Adam and Eve and endowed them with exactly what He wanted them to have, so it was part of Man's nature to be immortal right from the start.
And we blew it. Big time. Because of this one action of Adam in not restraining either himself or his wife, all of nature itself is blighted. We do not usually notice the blight, because we too are blighted. But it can be guessed at; our killing for food (NTTAWWT), the constant (and I mean constant, even in our own individual lives) swapping of wrong for right, the struggle for supremacy between races, religions, tribes, tongues, sexes even.
But the greatest blight of all is death. It is NOT in our nature to face death as we face all other adversities. We run and hide from it like from no other threat. We deny it, we fight it, we do everything in our power to delay its oncoming onslaught. We react like no other living creature does in the presence of death.
It is said that men are at their greatest, physically speaking, at around ages 18-21. This is when the muscles are at their best tone, when the fertility is highest, well, everything is all good withal. It must be true; otherwise why would men of all ages beyond this try everything in their power to return to that age? Maybe God created Adam to be around that age (I don't know). Certainly, however, I don't feel all that different from 21.
I do not fear death for myself. Although I don't want it either. I have HOPE in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, through whose Spirit my process of CHANGE from carnal man to regenerate man is enabled and expedited (although it's until an end-of-life process).