How many times have we heard human misconduct shrugged off with the excuse, “That’s human nature?” In my conversations with others, when I cite human obstinacy in sin such as with abortion, or in alcoholism or theft or any other sinful activity. Even with difficulties between countries when they enter wars, the answer is often: “Well, that’s just human nature.” I contend that it is not human nature.
Believing that statement to be true locks us into our wickedness with no hope of improvement. Take drug addiction, for example. Once a highly addictive drug gets hold of a human, there is very little hope of rescue. They say the same thing about today’s biggest moral problem: “Once abortion becomes common in civil life, there is little hope that a society will abolish it because so many lives are compromised if it is given up. Society, now dependent on abortion to solve other problems, is better off continuing with toleration of abortion than experiencing the rigors of abolishing it.” It’s basically another version of “That’s human nature.”
But is human nature really like that? Misunderstanding of almost everything God has done is more likely the cause of this miscalculation. Take the appearance of human beings on earth, for example. Our scientists have got it completely wrong. They claim humans fall into only one of two categories of living organisms: plants or animals. What miscalculation of scientific inquiry convinced them that there are only two categories of living creatures? Even the most primitive savages living in the deep forest know of a third category: spiritual beings.
The spiritual nature of man is real, and we all know it. All tribes of humans recognize that there are spiritual beings. They worshiped them as gods, but the beings they worship are actually created angels or devils, devils most likely, because they mislead men into idolatry.
Of course, the Supreme Being, God, is spiritual, and most primitive tribes do acknowledge the presence of a Supreme God. Recognizing the presence of a Creator-God sets the stage for recognizing the nature of man.
But a good percentage of scientists do not recognize that man is created special. They opine that man slowly evolved from brute animals through a long progression of generations over millions of years gradually learning human skills, such as speech. They teach this to the American people despite the fact that Scripture records that Adam spoke with God as soon as he was created, and Eve, shortly after her creation, spoke with the devil.
Composition of humans
God’s revelation clearly describes humans as a combination of physical nature and spiritual nature. They, unlike animals, were created immortal; they will never die. They were sovereign persons at their beginning, expected by God to appreciate who God is and to offer their love and obedience to Him who created them. Sadly, they did not. They offended God by listening to temptation by the devil and disobeyed God. What a huge difference between what science teaches about human beings and what they actually are.
But it doesn’t end there. Science has lumped many extinct species of anthropoid apes into the same genus as man. This is misleading. Genus is a category for man; species is specifically a category for “wise” man. Homo sapiens is the full name for a human being. It seems a small technicality, but it is huge. Ursus is the genus for bear, Ursus arctos is a brown bear, Ursus horribilis is a grizzly bear, etc. They are all recognized as bears, but they are different species
God only created one species of humans, but scientists present a very confusing classification for man mixing man in with several species of anthropoid apes into the same genus like Homo sapiens, Homo erectus, Homo habilis, etc. Only Homo sapiens is a human being. The rest are anthropoid apes, recognized by fossil skeletons.
But it doesn’t end there either. Our media in recent years has been flooding the news with articles about Sasquatch and abominable snow men (both of which are species of imaginary ape men), UFO sightings, which are supposedly species of extraterrestrials, and many other mythical man-like animals such as mermaids that do not exist.
I don’t know why they are doing this, but I suspect it is due to writers who are either ignorant of the truth or do not want humans to believe Scripture. So, we have two contradictory explanations of where man came from and what men are. I do not believe that men are purely animals that evolved out of naturally-occurring chemical processes millions of years ago. Man was created special by God and is considered by God as His masterpiece.
If Adam and Eve had not sinned
If Adam and Eve had never sinned, they would still be alive today. (Death was a punishment for sin.) Human history would be considerably, vastly different than it is today. But God has a remedy for our sins. Instead of passing directly into eternity sinless, every human being has to pass through this life, broken by his sinfulness and destined for punishment for his failure to live up to the expectations of God. Each human being can struggle against the devil and refuse to abide by the temptations presented by the devil.
A human being now has a hand in his own acceptance into the kingdom of heaven by proving his fidelity to God in a struggle with the devil where the human rejects every temptation to defy God. Humans assert their own wills against sin and obey God. It sounds so simple, but it is actually almost impossible to constantly assert one’s own will contrary to the devil’s temptation.
We all know that the Catholic faith and the Church’s (God’s Church) teaching provide guidance and sacraments without which humans have minimal chance of succeeding. None of us can succeed in this endeavor perfectly, and most of us need some purification before we enter heaven, but when we enter the kingdom of heaven, God will restore physical immortality to us. Physical immortality carries some other spiritual attributes, attributes that Christ displayed during His physical life on earth.
Other attributes of immortality
I consulted a fascinating article on the Man’s physical state in paradise. (See this.) Here is a summary of the attributes that Adam and Eve shared in the Garden before they sinned and ones that we will share in heaven.
Impassibility: The incorruptible nature of Jesus. He never would suffer from disease or death. He willingly accepted death to display to His Father that He would rather die than disobey His Father.
Subtlety: The ability to pass through closed doors and solid walls. According to several Gospel accounts, Jesus displayed that ability several times after His resurrection.
Agility: The ability seemingly to vanish like Jesus did when He disappeared from Emmaus after He celebrated the Eucharist with the disciples there. Even before His resurrection He often traveled with quick movements that made Him seem able to defy gravity such as when He walked on water and when He walked through the crowd that tried to stone Him when He proclaimed Himself the Messiah.
Clarity: The ability to exhibit an aura of light emanating from your body similar to the shekinah of God or the aura displayed by Jesus during the Transfiguration on Mount Tabor. There, Jesus also disappeared within a white cloud in front of Peter, James, and John.
Other benefits in heaven
Also, God will grant everybody in heaven firm virtues that include an overpowering desire to love and serve God making it impossible for them to ever again defy God.
In heaven we will be able to listen to prayers of those on earth: that means the prayers of anybody in whatever language they speak. After the end of the world, there will be no more people in exile on earth. Those in heaven will be able to speak with anybody no matter when they were created and in any language they choose. Such total understanding is essentially the gift of Pentecost that all will share.
This community of the faithful will be an extraordinary gift. We will remain in heaven forever. We will be able to speak to our ancestors and siblings and descendants any time we want and to historical persons we became aware of during our lives on earth.
We will also be able to have conversations with angels and with God. We will build up a personal relationship with God not only as creator but as intimate friend and beloved, the bridegroom of our soul. This is an extraordinary privilege. No animal can do this, only humans and angels can.
Think of what you might be doing in heaven. Were you a very athletic person in this earthly life? Would you look forward to continue that sport activity for 100 years? Wouldn’t you have gotten bored with it after several hundred years or 10,000 years? I think in heaven you would find God more interesting, extraordinarily interesting in every subject and science known to man.
Most of all you will find that God is exactly as He described Himself. He is love personified, and He loves everybody He created with an undying love. You love many people also, and you will find the greatest pleasure dealing with God when you discuss those individuals whom both of you love.
Family and friends
We all love our families and friends. The biggest surprise and pleasure in heaven is that we will see our parents and children, ancestors and descendants, not the way we remember them in this life through photographs and home movies, but in the flesh (after the resurrection of the body). Even our distant ancestors we will see in the flesh, and not as incredibly ancient persons in worn out and exhausted bodies, but in their prime.
If we wanted to play tennis of golf or some other vigorous sports, everybody in heaven would be able to play “in their youth” so to speak. Their memories will be sharp, and they will be able to tell us exactly what their earthly lives were like. There will be no end to the communion of saints in heaven. We could speak to Adam and Eve our original patriarch and matriarch and also to Jesus and Mary. I can imagine that everybody would be in line to speak to them, but we would have all eternity to wait our turn. Actually, I think we will have the ability to communicate with each other lightning fast through our spiritual natures.
We can look up old friends and renew our friendship. We can meet historical persons like George Washington, Nefertiti, Albert Einstein, and any of the saints like St. Joan of Arc, St. Therese of the Child Jesus, St. Faustina, St. Francis. There will be no limit to our first-hand communication with others in heaven, except that we won’t meet those who were confined to hell. Hopefully, none of our family and friends would wind up there.
The best part is that we will get an accurate appraisal of their lives directly from each person rather than rely on secondhand histories, as we do in this life, with all the misconception and falsehood that characterizes secondhand accounts. And there will be no end to it since God has probably created tens of billions of humans since Adam and Eve.
You will even meet people who lived before the flood when human lives were measured in centuries. I would not be surprised if some well-known historical characters belong in that group. What interesting times they will be able to tell you about. There is no falsehood in heaven; everything you see, everything you hear is absolutely true. Nobody steals or cheats. It can’t get any better than that.
And then there is science. What marvels will we learn from angels describing the mechanisms of God’s creation accurately so we can understand the extraordinary skill the Son of God displayed when He created the universe to satisfy His Father’s desire.
What is natural for humans? It is the life God created you to live in His heavenly kingdom. Compared to the short time we live in this present life; eternity is so long lasting that of course what is natural in eternity overshadows anything we displayed in this life.
In this life, when people pass off evil deeds with the excuse, “That is natural for man,” we should understand that sin and evil is not natural for the real reason God created man. It only seems natural for humans under the influence of temptation by the devil.
We all should try to be on the side of God and His kingdom always.