William Lane Craig has argued that after the end of this world our bodies will literally be resurrected in a physical sense. We will then be united with our physical bodies.

My question then is which physical body will I receive: My 5 year old body, 45 year old body, ...?

Having been raised Catholic, I'd be curious to know how Catholicism interprets this question.

Please provide a passage(s) from the bible to support your explanation.


1 Answer 1


No one knows for sure. The Bible doesn't speak directly to this issue, no Pope has spoken ex cathedra about it, and no ecumenical council has addressed it.

The "angelic doctor" Thomas Aquinas wrote in his catechism:

All will rise in the condition of perfect age, which is of thirty-two or thirty-three years. This is because all who were not yet arrived at this age, did not possess this perfect age, and the old had already lost it. Hence, youths and children will be given what they lack, and what the aged once had will be restored to them.

Aquinas cites Ephesians 4:13 for support:

until we all attain to the unity of faith and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the extent of the full stature of Christ

However, the connection to the teaching he gives is tenuous. Read it in its full context.

Catholic apologist Peter Kreeft said in a discourse on heaven:

What age will we be in Heaven?

Medieval philosophers usually thought we would all be 33, the ideal age, the age of maturity, as of Christ's earthly maturity. I take it this is symbolically accurate: we will all be fully mature. Infants who die prematurely will be given, by God (perhaps through the mediation of their own parents!), all the maturing they missed on Earth. Geneticists say that the aging process is not inevitable; that a live organism could theoretically be immortal, never age, never die. Cancer cells do not die unless they are killed or their host dies. The aging and dying process began at a certain time in our history, after the Fall. God did not make death, but he unmakes it. In Heaven no one will be old. Yet in a sense everyone will be both old and young, as a reflection of the God who is the Alpha and Omega, oldest and youngest, "beauty ancient yet ever new." Even now we sometimes see the wisdom of old age in the musing face of a baby or the eternal freshness of youth in the twinkling eyes of the very old. These are hints of Heaven.

Though nobody knows the answer, Kreeft affirms that Aquinas' answer is "symbolically accurate." That is, though we may not know the details, we do know that we will have perfect bodies.

There's a related question on the Catholic view of heaven which may interest you.

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