Q: I’ve been listening to The Urantia Book on DVD and I just don’t understand people dying at a young age
A: I am glad that you are able to enjoy The Urantia Book by listening to it…some people find that to be a very helpful way to digest the text.
You did not mention what part of the book that you are reading that prompts this question. I can say that I sympathize and understand your difficulty at understanding why young people die. This is an age-old question and concern that people have when they are wondering about the existence of God.
Death is built-in to our earthly existence, but it is God’s will that all mortals should pass from earthly death into eternal life. It is this survival after death that is ours for the asking. And provision is made for even the young, who may be taken out of life prematurely. Death is a fact of life, but death does not mean the end of the person. You might like to visit our study on Life After Death to learn more about eternal life as it is taught in The Urantia Book.
The truth is that people of all ages die. This is only our first life, and death is our only means of escaping from the earth so that our immortal souls may move forward. Ideally, every person would be able have a full, productive life and live until a ripe old age before they die; however, this is simply not always possible in worlds like ours, where literally, anything can happen. Accidents happen, disease happens, murders happen, climatic disasters happen. Our earthly lives are not guaranteed to be long. The only assurance we have is that we have been given life. But we learn in The Urantia Book that we have another, and even more sure guarantee…and that is the guarantee of eternal life after this life in the flesh. The only thing we have to do to secure this guarantee is to believe in it, to desire it and to accept it.
This guarantee is given even to the very young, who are specially cared-for, should they die before they have a chance to understand and to choose. This special care is provided on the Probationary Nursery on the first Mansion World. There, the child will grow up under angelic care and will be given ample opportunity to choose eternal life just like any other mortal, once they gain the capacity to make that choice.
Here is more information about this process::
49:6.11 The arrival of an Adjuster constitutes identity in the eyes of the universe, and all indwelt beings are on the roll calls of justice. But temporal life on the evolutionary worlds is uncertain, and many die in youth before choosing the Paradise career. Such Adjuster-indwelt children and youths follow the parent of most advanced spiritual status, thus going to the system finaliter world (the probationary nursery) on the third day, at a special resurrection, or at the regular millennial and dispensational roll calls.
49:6.12 Children who die when too young to have Thought Adjusters are repersonalized on the finaliter world of the local systems concomitant with the arrival of either parent on the mansion worlds. A child acquires physical entity at mortal birth, but in the matter of survival all Adjusterless children are reckoned as still attached to their parents.
49:6.13 In due course Thought Adjusters come to indwell these little ones, while the seraphic ministry to both groups of the probationary-dependent orders of survival is in general similar to that of the more advanced parent or is equivalent to that of the parent in case only one survives. Those attaining the third circle, regardless of the status of their parents, are accorded personal guardians.
And so, while our hearts break when we lose a young person, we still can have hope that that person is not gone forever; that their lives are preserved and nurtured, and that they too, have the same chance for eternal life that a person who dies of old-age has.
I want to thank you again for this question to us. I hope that my reply has been helpful to you, and that you’ll continue your study of The Urantia Book. A complete reading of the book will reveal not only God’s parental love for us, but also his amazing plan for his children on earth and in eternity. The Urantia Book will put the problems of life, death and eternal survival into an understandable and inspiring context.”