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The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part 1: Apostlesí Creed, Descended..Hell.Third Day..Rose..Dead
TheRealPresence.org ^ | 2002 | Pocket Catholic Catechism

Posted on 10/17/2009 9:25:43 PM PDT by Salvation

Part One:  The Apostles’ Creed

5.  

He Descended into Hell. On the Third Day, He Rose Again from the Dead”


Table of Contents    



St. Andrew There are two truths of faith affirmed in this article of the Creed. The first is that after Christ died, His soul – separated from the body – visited the souls of the faithful departed in what has come to be called the Limbo of the Fathers. The second truth is the Resurrection of Christ from the grave on Easter Sunday. While the Resurrection of Christ is far more significant, His descent “into hell” deserves to be better known.


The Descent of Christ

It is not difficult to trace the origins of the statement that, after He died, Jesus “descended into hell.” Pre- Christian Judaism is clear on the point. By whatever name it was called, Jewish believers by the time of Christ held that there was an abode of the departed just. It was assumed to be a place or state of happiness, temporary, and was to be replaced by a condition of final or permanent bliss when the Messiah came to establish His kingdom.

On the strength of this tradition, the Apostles’ Creed affirms the existence of a limbo – distinct from hell and purgatory – for the just who had died before Christ’s ascension into heaven. Because of the Fall, heaven was closed to human beings. In other words, actual possession of the beatific vision was postponed even for those who were purified of all sin. They would enjoy the vision of God only after the Redemption was historically completed by Christ’s visible ascension into heaven. This was implied in the Savior’s promise to the penitent thief on Calvary. “This day,” he was assured, “you will be with me in Paradise” (Luke 24:43).

The reason for Christ’s visit to the faithful departed seems evident from the circumstances. He wished to reassure these justified souls that they were, indeed, redeemed and their entrance into heaven was near at hand.


The Resurrection

Christianity as the religion of history and Christ as the living God made man depend on His resurrection from the dead.

We shall therefore examine the Resurrection in a series of questions: What is the Resurrection? Why did Jesus Christ rise from the grave? And how are we to make the Resurrection more meaningful in our lives?

What is the Resurrection?  The Resurrection is the historic event of Christ reuniting His human body and soul, which had been separated by His death on Calvary.

Christ had a true human nature, like ours except for sin. Since he had no sin, He need not have died. He chose to die. But by the same free will by which He chose death, He also chose to conquer death and return to the human life He possessed before the first Good Friday.

It was the same Jesus Christ who rose on Easter Sunday. It was the same Divine Person united with His human nature. St. Luke describes the scene on Easter Sunday when the Lord appeared to the eleven disciples as they huddled together in the upper chamber in Jerusalem. They were listening to the two disciples who had just been with Jesus on their way to Emmaus:

Now while they were talking of these things, Jesus stood in their midst, and said to them, “Peace to you! It is I, do not be afraid.” But they were startled and panic-stricken, and thought they saw a spirit. And He said to them, ”Why are you disturbed, and why do doubts arise in your hearts? See my hands and feet, that it is I myself. Feel me and see; for a spirit does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” And having said this, He showed them His hands and feet. But as they still disbelieved and marvelled for joy, He said, “Have you anything here to eat?” And they offered Him a piece of broiled fish and a honeycomb. And when He had eaten in their presence He took what remained and gave it to them (Luke 24:36-43).

The apostles were absolutely certain about Christ's bodily resurrection from the dead. This became the foundation of all their preaching. On Pentecost Sunday, Peter told the Jews that the Jesus whom they had crucified had come back to life. And he rested the credibility of the Christian faith on this historical fact.

Why the Resurrection?  Christ rose from the dead as the crowning miracle of His visible stay on earth. He worked many miracles during His three years of public ministry: paralytics began to use their limbs, the blind were restored their sight, deaf-mutes could hear and speak; Christ calmed the storm at sea with a single command, He walked on water and gave Peter the power to do the same; the dead were raised from the grave. And not long before His Passion, He called the dead Lazarus out of the tomb.

On this level, His own resurrection was only the culmination of a series of wonders that made Christ’s astounding doctrine acceptable by the human mind.

Moreover, by rising from the dead, He proved that He had overcome sin, which was the original cause of death.

Finally, Christ’s resurrection is the promise and prelude of our own final resurrection on the last day. He is, as St. Paul tells us, the first fruits of those who sleep. The mystery of death, which we all naturally fear, is balanced by the confident hope that we, too, will rise from the grave.

Our souls are naturally immortal. When they leave the body they remain alive, to enter an eternity whose happiness or misery depends on how well we have served God during our mortal life on earth.

Our bodies will decay and return to the dust from which they come. But only for awhile. In God’s own time, provided we have been faithful to the divine will before death, these dead bodies will walk and speak and hear and see again. They will be glorified. This means they will be immortal, never to die again. They will be resplendent with beauty, never again endure pain, and will be able to move through space and matter, not unlike the risen body of Jesus Christ.

The Risen Christ Is Alive.  Having become man, the Son of god will always remain man. The expression, “Jesus Christ, yesterday, today, and forever” has been literally verified until now and is prophesied into the endless reaches of eternity.

In the next article of the Creed, we profess to believe in Christ’s ascension into heaven. But there would have been no ascension unless there had first been a true bodily resurrection. So, too, when we reflect on the Holy Eucharist, the key to understanding the Real Presence is the fact that God became man, died, and rose from the dead. Why is this the key? Because the Eucharist is the Risen Christ living in our midst in the Blessed Sacrament.

The Lamb of the Passion


Copyright © 2002 Inter Mirifica
Pocket Catholic Catechism


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic; History; Theology
KEYWORDS: catholic; catholiclist; creeds
Continuing the series on the Apostles' Creed.
1 posted on 10/17/2009 9:25:44 PM PDT by Salvation
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To: nickcarraway; Lady In Blue; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; Catholicguy; RobbyS; markomalley; ...
Catholic Discussion Ping!

Please notify me via FReepmail if you would like to be added to or taken off the Catholic Discussion Ping List.

2 posted on 10/17/2009 9:26:36 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
The Essentials of the Catholic Faith (Introduction)
The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part One: The Apostles’ Creed, The Basic Profession of Faith
The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part 1: The Apostles’ Creed, “I Believe in God, the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth"
The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part 1: The Apostles’ Creed: “And in Jesus Christ, His Only Son, Our Lord”
The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part One: The Apostles' Creed: “ Who Was Conceived by the Holy Spirit, Born of the Virgin Mary”

The Essentials of the Catholic Faith, Part One: The Apostles’ Creed: “Suffered Under Pontius Pilate, was Crucified, Died, and was Buried”
The Esstentials of the Catholic Faith, Part One: The Apostle's Creed: He Descended into Hell. On the Third Day He Rose Again from the Dead

3 posted on 10/17/2009 9:30:31 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All

THE CREDO

The Apostles Creed The Nicene Creed
I believe in God,
the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
and of all that is, seen and unseen.
I believe in Jesus Christ,
his only Son, our Lord.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
one in Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation,
he came down from heaven:
He was conceived by the
power of the Holy Spirit
and born of the Virgin Mary.
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he was born of the Virgin Mary,
and became man.
He suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended into hell.
For our sake he was crucified
under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered died and was buried.
On the third day he rose again. On the third day he rose again
in fulfillment of the Scriptures;
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again to judge
the living and the dead
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.
Amen.
We believe in the Holy Spirit,
the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the
Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son
he is worshipped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy
catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one
baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.
Amen.

4 posted on 10/17/2009 9:31:29 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

Thanks!


5 posted on 10/17/2009 9:32:17 PM PDT by Steelfish
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To: All

The new Apostles’ Creed:

believe in God, the Father almighty,
Creator of heaven and earth,
and in Jesus Christ, his only Son,
our Lord,
who was conceived
by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died and was buried;
he descended into hell;
on the third day he rose again
from the dead;
he ascended into heaven,
and is seated at the right hand
of God the Father almighty;
from there he will come to judge
the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and life everlasting. Amen.


6 posted on 10/17/2009 9:32:22 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: All
 

The new Nicene Creed per the USCCB website:

I believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.
And in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the Only Begotten Son of God,
born of the Father before all ages.
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
consubstantial with the Father;
through him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation
he came down from heaven,
and by the Holy Spirit
was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
and became man.
For our sake
he was crucified under Pontius Pilate,
he suffered death and was buried,
and rose again on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures.
He ascended into heaven and is seated
at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead
and his kingdom will have no end.
And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord,
the giver of life, who proceeds
from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son
is adored and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.
And one, holy, catholic
and apostolic Church.
I confess one baptism
for the forgiveness of sins
and I look forward to the resurrection
of the dead
and the life of the world to come. Amen.


7 posted on 10/17/2009 9:33:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

So they are changing the good ol’ “We Believe.” It looks a lot similar to what is in my 62 missle. So does that make it the new nicene creede?”

The Novus Ordo is like a box of chocolates...


8 posted on 10/17/2009 11:04:02 PM PDT by fire4effect
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To: fire4effect

Going back to the old. All the new translations are going back to the old. Great, isn’t it?

P. The Lord be with you.
We will answer: “And with your spirit.”

Through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault will be re-inserted into the Confiteor.....it’s been in the Spanish Mass forever!

P. Behold! The Lamb of God!
All “Lord I am not worthy that you should enter under my roof, but only say the word and my soul shall be healed.”

Just SOME of the old coming back! Hooray!


9 posted on 10/18/2009 9:27:55 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: fire4effect

So great that the Nicene Creed will finally say: “I believe”

CREDO!


10 posted on 10/18/2009 9:28:51 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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