How do Catholics interpret 1Timothy 6:16


1 Timothy 6:16 states that God alone possesses immortality. I am a Christian who believes, according to scripture, that no one is resurrected until the first resurrection. The Bible describes this as the resurrection when believers are brought back to life to reign with Christ. The second resurrection is described as the resurrection when everyone else is resurrected & faces judgement. Please help me to understand this in light of Catholicism. Thank you so much!


I’m not sure what your exact question is, but I believe the passage is pointing to the truth that God is immortal by his very nature.


God is immortal, God gives us eternal life.

We are not immortal.

On the last day, it’s judgement day for everyone. Heaven or hell.

That’s our second judgement. Our first is when we die. Heaven, purgatory or hell.

You can and do go from purgatory to heaven. Hell is a one way trip.

I think the passage you read is in revelation?


God’s the only one who naturally is eternal. We’re all dependent on his grace, even after resurrection, it’s only through God that we can live forever afterwards in glorified bodies.

Two resurrections? Where does that come from?



Are you confusing it with the misunderstanding protestant theology of Christ coming again, twice?


This is why I was confused by the question. Perhaps the OP can clarify.


1 Timothy 6
“But as for you, man of God, shun all this; pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith; take hold of the eternal life, to which you were called and for which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. In the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, I charge you to keep the commandment without spot or blame until the manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he will bring about at the right time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords. It is he alone who has immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see; to him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen”

Jesus, being the Word made flesh, is God. He, as the Son of God, always possessed immortality, and then gained eternal life (by living in the flesh in obedience to the Spirit) on behalf of those who have faith in Him.


Yes, he always possessed immortality…but as the second person of the Holy Trinity, he as you stated already and always possessed immortality…he did not need to gain eternal life, he already had it (that is immortality)…living in the flesh and obedience to the Holy Spirit did not give him what he already had…since he was the same essence as the Holy Spirit, he could not go rogue…he was in total synch with the Holy Spirit, and equal and not subordinate to the spirit…it is our obedience in the Trinity that gives us eternal life…and it was his living in the flesh that regained the immortality and eternal life we lost at the fall.


As far as God alone possessing immortality, I haven’t found any Catholic commentary on that particular verse. However, it probably means that God alone possesses immortality naturally and that those others who have it receive it as a gift from God.

As far as the first and second resurrections mentioned in Revelation 20 go, Catholics tend to be amillenialists, understanding the thousand year reign of Christ and his saints mentioned in Revelation 20 to be symbolic of the time between Jesus’ resurrection almost 2000 years ago and Jesus second coming at the end of time when all the dead will be raised for the General Judgment, when Christ reigns in and through his church.

If that is the case, then, I think, “the first resurrection” mentioned in Revelation 20 probably refers to the resurrection of the saints mentioned in Matthew 27:52-53:

52 the tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised, 53 and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.


By taking on flesh and living in obedience to the Spirit, He gained (merited) our Reconciliation to the Spirit, not His own. But the promise is to those who believe and remain in Him.


It can not refer to them. They did not ascend into heaven. They lived again and went into the city and witnessed. If you read Revelation 20:4-6 it speaks of the first resurrection and how the people who partake in that are blessed & will reign with Christ a thousand years. These people are resurrected and rewarded for not taking the mark of the beast or worshiping his image. That has not happened yet. The rest of the dead are not brought back to life until the thousand years are ended. This is all in Scripture. Thank you.


It is in scripture. Please see my reply to Todd Easton. The order esuteection is mentioned in Revelation 20:4-6. The second is mentioned in Revelation 20:11-15, which is the great white throne judgement. My point in mentioning all of this is to say how do Catholics reconcile this to their faith? The scripture states that only God holds immortality now. And we are not risen to life until the resurrection. Why would we be judged twice? Or resurrected twice? Thank you all for your comments. I am not asking this to be smug or rude. I truly want to understand the catholic view on all of this. I was actually surprised to hear some of you ask me where I heard of this, when it is in our Holy Bible. Thank you again sincerely!


Sorry about the typo. “First resurrection” is obviously what was meant to be written. Lol


Two judgments should not be confused with two resurrections…the Catholic teaching is that our souls are judged at our moment of death (should that come before the return of Christ), and based on this “Particular Judgement” our souls are destined for salvation (immediately, or through purgatory), but the “final Judgement” at the return of Christ will se the one and only resurrection, when we will be given a new body and it will be joined with ours souls, if we died before the return.


The Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 676, seems to condemn any form of millennialism that has Christ reigning on the earth in person with his resurrected saints before the end of the world.


This is a small part of a very good (old) Catholic commentary on the 20th chapter of the Apocalypse. I added the link, below, in case you wanted to read the whole thing:


“Ver. 2. And bound him for a thousand years. I shall give the reader an abridgment of what S. Augustin has left us on this chapter, in his 20th book de Civ. Dei. From the 5th to the 16th chap. (t. vii. p. 578 et seq.) he treats upon these difficulties: What is meant by the first and second resurrection; by the binding and chaining up of the devil; by the thousand years that the saints reign with Christ; by the first and second death; by Gog and Magog, &c. As to the first resurrection, c. vi. he takes notice on the 5th verse, that resurrection[1] in the Gospels, and in S. Paul, is applied not only to the body but also to the soul; and the second resurrection, which is to come, is that of the bodies: that there is also a death of the soul, which is by sin; and that the second death is that of soul and body by eternal damnation: that both bad and good shall rise again in their bodies. On those words, (v. 6) Blessed is he that hath part in the first resurrection; in these the second death hath no power. Such, saith he, (c. ix.) as have risen from sin, and have remained in that resurrection of the soul, shall never be liable to the second death, which is damnation.”


God alone is eternal by His nature. He grants us immortality because He loves us.
There is only one resurrection. But there will be two judgements. Each of us, when we die, must face the Particular Judgment. There we learn our fate: Heaven, Hell or Purgatory followed by Heaven.
Upon the end of the age all will face the General Judgment, when every soul will witness the judgment of every other soul. Every one of us will see the justice and mercy of God with regard to every other one of us.

One Resurrection, two Judgments.


Are you questioning Jesus being resurrected or Our Lady?


Part of revelation was written in code about the past. And some was written about the future. Catholics do not believe people on earth will be taken up and spared the antichrist. The end is actually the end. No one knows the end. People will be living like there will be a tomorrow. Do not be anxious about the end. The end is a single event in which there will be a new heaven and new earth. Everyone will be judged, doesn’t change the judgement on the day they actually died. The end is where our bodies come back to us. Actual end, not stages of ending. It’s all in the Bible. We do believe in the resurrection of the dead. The rapture is a recent phenomena of various scripture picked from various books in the bible and collected.


Yes true… Christ is already with us in the Eucharist and we are living in the 1,000 year reign of Apocalypse

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