One of my favorite theological concepts to study is eschatology. Eschatology, or the study of “last things,” centers around what we as Christians believe will happen at the end of time, what happens to our souls and bodies after death, and what the afterlife might look like. While the questions that eschatology asks may seem nothing more than esoteric speculations for the future, I am fully convinced that our beliefs about eschatology deeply impact how we live our lives. As Karl Barth writes in Dogmatics in Outline eschatology is the most practical of theologies:
The Christian hope does not lead us away from this life: it is rather the uncovering of the truth in which God sees our life. It is the conquest of death, but not a flight into the Beyond. The reality of this life is involved. Eschatology, rightly understood, is the most practical thing that can be thought. In the eschaton the light falls from above into our life. We await this light.