God is life, all life. There is no life apart from God because to believe so is to limit God. What lives lives in God and by God, even though it is other than God that is of a different essence. It lives by participation of his energies. He sustains it and gives it life. What is separate from God is separate from life and so heads to death. Only united to God and participating in his life can one live.
Man was created in union with God, although not yet perfect, as such he was maintained in life and free of death. Man was also sustained in virtue, the way to live correctly. However, once man disobeyed God he then separated his will from that of God and so separated his whole being from God, which meant that he would die because he is no longer united to life. God does not create death. Death is the only possible result for those who freely reject life, that is reject God, especially his will and sovereignty.
God is simple and not compounded of parts thus we cannot be partially united with Him rather we must be united in all aspects of our being. Our existence is compounded of various aspects which are united without confusion in the One but known distinctly in our created nature. Each other these aspects must be united to him because they are united in him. Even matter is united with God in Christ without dividing him.
God sustains us though even in our sin and separation because he, in his great love, waits for our repentance but he cannot forbear with us forever otherwise he would then deny himself, who must be all in all. Eventually, those who are not united to him must be left to death so that those who are united to him may experience the fullness of his life as he completely becomes all in all. However, he will not deny his own image in those separated from him and it will be preserved forever in him, although the person will suffer the torments of death forever. God is eternal and life is eternal. He cannot deny himself and become temporal. We must accept that we too must share in eternity, either united in the joy of life or separated in the anguish of death.
After the Fall man, being separated from God and so life, cannot of his own strength live nor persevere in virtue. He decays into death and sin. However, man has not lost the image of God so retains the ability for virtue but disconnected from the source it becomes clouded with sin and unable without God to be perfect. His mind not knowing God becomes fixed on the temporal existence of this world and he forgets that existence is eternal, that life is in God and is mainfested in virtue. But man is capable of repentance through faith and if he is willing to be reunited with God and accept God’s help by submitting to God’s will and sovereignty.
Baptism in the Church is the means of uniting man to God through Christ, it restores the original union of Adam with God and permits us to share in life and persevere in virtue. It allows us to become perfect in virtue and life because we have the life of God to enable us through the grace of the Holy Spirit. However, our body remains subject to death because the resurrection is not yet and to show that it remains our body united to but not confused with the body of Christ. It can be cut off from him again also. Nevertheless, because bodies of the baptised share in the union with Christ, the bodies of saints, those who maintain the union all their life, become holy reliques full of grace and even remain incorrupt because they are united to living body of Christ.
Without baptism of the Church, the body of Christ, man remains separate from God and unable to partake of his life. Our union with God must take place both spiritually and physically. The whole man, body and soul, needs to be united with God. Faith without works is dead as are works without faith and baptism.