The last Adam has become a life-giving spirit. (Cor 1.15:45)
This statement teaches us to understand Christ as the “last man” – final man, who takes man into his future which consists of his being, not just man, but one with God.
It is openness to the whole, to the infinite, that makes man complete. Man is man by reaching out infinitely beyond himself, and he is consequently more of a man the less enclosed he is in himself, the less limited he is. For – let me repeat – that man is most fully man, indeed the true man, who is most unlimited, who not only has contact with the infinite – the infinite Being! – but is one with him.
The man shut off in himself, who wants to assert himself, stand only in himself, is then the man of the past whom we must leave behind us.
- Ratzinger, Cardinal Joseph. (1969) Introduction to Christianity. p 234 -40