CCC 519 All Christ’s riches “are for every individual and are everybody’s property.”1 Christ did not live his life for himself but for us, from his Incarnation “for us men and for our salvation” to his death “for our sins” and Resurrection “for our justification”.2 He is still “our advocate with the Father”, who “always lives to make intercession” for us.3 He remains ever “in the presence of God on our behalf, bringing before him all that he lived and suffered for us.”4
CCC 571 The Paschal mystery of Christ’s cross and Resurrection stands at the center of the Good News that the apostles, and the Church following them, are to proclaim to the world. God’s saving plan was accomplished “once for all”5 by the redemptive death of his Son Jesus Christ.
CCC 662 “And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself.”6 The lifting up of Jesus on the cross signifies and announces his lifting up by his Ascension into heaven, and indeed begins it. Jesus Christ, the one priest of the new and eternal Covenant, “entered, not into a sanctuary made by human hands. .. but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf.”7 There Christ permanently exercises his priesthood, for he “always lives to make intercession” for “those who draw near to God through him”.8 As “high priest of the good things to come” he is the center and the principal actor of the liturgy that honors the Father in heaven.9
CCC 1013 Death is the end of man’s earthly pilgrimage, of the time of grace and mercy which God offers him so as to work out his earthly life in keeping with the divine plan, and to decide his ultimate destiny. When “the single course of our earthly life” is completed,10 we shall not return to other earthly lives: “It is appointed for men to die once.”11 There is no “reincarnation” after death.
CCC 1021 Death puts an end to human life as the time open to either accepting or rejecting the divine grace manifested in Christ.12 The New Testament speaks of judgment primarily in its aspect of the final encounter with Christ in his second coming, but also repeatedly affirms that each will be rewarded immediately after death in accordance with his works and faith. The parable of the poor man Lazarus and the words of Christ on the cross to the good thief, as well as other New Testament texts speak of a final destiny of the soul--a destiny which can be different for some and for others.13
CCC 1036 The affirmations of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church on the subject of hell are a call to the responsibility incumbent upon man to make use of his freedom in view of his eternal destiny. They are at the same time an urgent call to conversion: “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”14
Since we know neither the day nor the hour, we should follow the advice of the Lord and watch constantly so that, when the single course of our earthly life is completed, we may merit to enter with him into the marriage feast and be numbered among the blessed, and not, like the wicked and slothful servants, be ordered to depart into the eternal fire, into the outer darkness where “men will weep and gnash their teeth.”15
CCC 2741 Jesus also prays for us – in our place and on our behalf. All our petitions were gathered up, once for all, in his cry on the Cross and, in his Resurrection, heard by the Father. This is why he never ceases to intercede for us with the Father.16 If our prayer is resolutely united with that of Jesus, in trust and boldness as children, we obtain all that we ask in his name, even more than any particular thing: the Holy Spirit himself, who contains all gifts.
1 John Paul II, RH II.
2 I Cor 15:3; Rom 4:25.
3 I Jn 2:1 Heb 7:25.
4 Heb 9:24.
5 Heb 9:26.
6 Jn 12:32.
7 Heb 9:24.
8 Heb 7:25.
9 Heb 9:11; cf. Rev 4:6-11.
10 LG 48 § 3.
11 Heb 9:27.
12 Cf. 2 Tim 1:9-10.
13 Cf. Lk 16:22; 23:43; Mt 16:26; 2 Cor 5:8; Phil 1:23; Heb 9:27; 12:23.
14 Mt 7:13-14.
15 LG 48 # 3; Mt 22:13; cf. Heb 9:27; Mt 25:13, 26, 30, 31 46.
16 Cf. Heb 5:7; 7:25; 9:24