Eschatology is linked to man's expectations in life beyond death.
This vision can significantly influence the worldview and daily behavior.
Eternity, besides recalling the meaning of death, puts the meaning of human existence into crisis. Death inspires fear and is transmitted to all other human fears. Death, from all points of view, is a failure for the human being because from the point of matter man is born to die. It is a tragic destiny highlighted by a philosopher who said: "It is not death that frightens me, but the idea of death". The idea of never again being swallowed up in nothing terrifies the intellect. Faced with this truth, where there is no hope, despair emerges.
Death, then, leads us to reflect on the why of existence, that is, if man is only bound to the material that is born, develops and at the appointed time is corrupted to be ever more, or there is a luminous response that appeases the knowledge and it is in the transcendent. That transcendent unveiled by God where one dies to be reborn to new life, and is a knowledge that surpasses all other human knowledge.
From what we have examined, death is the natural epilogue of human existence, but this ominous destiny is contrary to the yearning of life that is inherent in every creature, because it is tragic to lose the sense of existence to sink into nothingness. And how can we reconcile time with the timeless, the finite with the infinite? Human intelligence can only vaguely sense the dimension, where there is no time flowing but without fully understanding it. Can the thoughts, words, human expressions that are limited, finite and abstract, ever express this situation? Only by divine grace can one come to understand this reality. Here, then, is the need for a sense of life in spite of having to die, a meaning that allows hope to be born.
The first condition for giving value to life is to hope, the second is to let ourselves be enlightened by Christ, dead and risen. He, the only Son of God, became incarnate giving himself to history and then ascending to Heaven. There, eternal life should not be conceived in a temporal sense, but as a dimension that will never end. Man will be placed in the presence of God and will participate in his life with such an ineffable joy that it is not conceived by the limited human mind.
The eschatological destiny of man is realized and expressed, therefore, in directing his gaze on the horizon of God, where there is a real life waiting for him. "The time is complete and the kingdom of God is near, convert and believe in the gospel" (Mk 1: 15). It is wise to put hope in Christ to rediscover the reason for existence and the meaning of human hope. Siracide says: "The Lord made man from the beginning and left him at the mercy of his council" (Sir 15:14). Deuteronomy continues: "I have offered you life and death, blessing and curse: therefore choose life, so that you and your descendants live, loving the Lord your God, obeying his voice and keeping you united with him".
(DT 30, 19-20).
Only by choosing good and rejecting evil can one obtain salvation and live in relationship with God. The Gospel speaks to us even more explicitly: "Whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the Gospel will save it" (Mk 8:35). This is a promise that feeds hope.
After the death of Jesus, silence followed, but after three days he resurrected with a glorious body and destroyed death. Yes, the resurrection of Jesus also opens up for us a true future and not as a mere future, but a real horizon of life and resurrection.
This reality is not only in tomorrow, but already in the present, we can say that it is always current and in every moment, because my future of glory depends on my behavior, the way of life, that is my decisions and my liberties. If man is made to love and be loved, he can only hope for love. But man knows that Love is God and that nothing can separate him from his Love. "This life, which I live in the body, I live in the faith of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me".
It is the infinite and gratuitous Love of God who saves. This is the hope that man ardently desires: "To be intimately united to Christ in order to reach true love and happiness, to satisfy Him eternally".
In the cords of every human heart there is the desire to exist forever, to be totally and forever loved. Death cannot be the tomb that puts an end to these sublime aspirations.
With the advent of Christ, history is transformed because it has revealed its most intimate truth to us: "Man has a future of glory". The future is already in today, here and now. Man can therefore look at reality in a more true and profound way, since eternity begins with how daily life is lived. In other words, keeping the gaze on eternal life, suffering and death are faced in a different and more constructive way.