Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Eternal and Everlasting

Eternal vs Everlasting

The differences between “everlasting” and “eternal” can be explained in two different ways. First, according to the difference between the words in the English language and, secondly, through theology which is a means to explain the difference between the two with reference to God and spirituality.

Language difference

Eternal

It is used as an adjective and a noun.

When used as adjective, it means, “without beginning or end, always existing, lasting forever.” For example, “Hindus believe in an eternal soul. The soul is neither created nor destroyed.”
Ceaseless, endless, perpetual. For example, ”She is eternally grateful to the firefighter for saving her life.”
Immutable, enduring. For example, “His eternal principles made him a great man.”

When used as noun it means:

Something which is eternal. For example, “life and death.”
The Eternal, meaning “God.”

Everlasting

It is used as an adjective and noun.

When used as an adjective, it means, “lasting forever”. For example, “everlasting love.”
Lasting for a very long time, for an indefinitely long time. For example, “His everlasting morals were commendable.”
Lasting so long that it seems tedious. For example, “Her everlasting chatter gave her friend a headache.”

When used as noun, it means:

The Everlasting, meaning, “God.”
Endless duration, meaning, “eternity.”
A flower, the flower called “Everlasting.”

Theological difference

In the Bible, according to Dr. Russell Norman Murray, a philosophical theologist, three different phrases were identified as mentioning similar words like “eternal” and “everlasting.” One form was used to express the spirit, which is eternal, that is, “without any beginning or any end.” The second form of the word was used to describe life, “life without any end.” These two forms were used to describe the word “eternal.” “Without start, without an end” which is the last or third form of the word, describes about life which did not always exist but was granted to God so that they could have an everlasting life. It had a beginning but no end. This word was similar to the word “everlasting.”

Similarly, according to Hindus, God is eternal. The spirit, the God has been always there, they were not created, they cannot be destroyed, they were never born, they will never die. They were created on their own within no time limits and outside any limitation of time; whereas love could be everlasting as it has a beginning but no end. It runs within a time frame.

Summary:

1.According to the English language, “eternal” means “without beginning or end, always existing, lasting forever”; whereas “everlasting” means “lasting forever, lasting for a very long time, for an indefinitely long time.”

2.Theologically, “eternal” means “not within any time limit, outside of time and existing without a beginning or end, like spirit”; whereas “everlasting” means “the life which did not always exist but was granted to God and it was forever, running within time, or something similar, which has a beginning but no end.”


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