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Featured Do you go directly to heaven after you die?

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by Neostarwcc, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Cement

    Cement Active Member

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    You go either to the great white light or the deep dark abyss.
     
  2. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    In the New Testament we read:

    Matthew 10:28
    28 And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.

    This verse makes a clear distinction between the physical body and the soul and teaches that it is possible to kill the body without killing the soul.

    Revelation 6:9-10
    9 When He opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the testimony which they held.
    10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, until You judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?"


    The souls crying out from under the altar are the souls of those who have been slain. Again, this indicates that the soul can exist independently of the body in a conscious state.

    Luke 23:46-47
    46 And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, "Father, 'into Your hands I commit My spirit.' "Having said this, He breathed His last.
    47 So when the centurion saw what had happened, he glorified God, saying, "Certainly this was a righteous Man!"


    The word "spirit" here is translated from the Greek word "pneuma," which has a variety of meanings in Scripture: wind, breath, life-spirit, soul, the spirit as part of the human personality, the spirit of God, the spirit of Christ, and the Holy Spirit. Context rules out most of these meanings. It doesn't make sense for Jesus to commend his "wind" or "breath" to the Father. It doesn't make any better sense for Jesus to be committing "the spirit of God" or the "Holy Spirit" to the Father. From a plain reading of the passage it is clear Jesus is committing his immaterial human soul or spirit to the Father.

    Acts 7:59
    59 And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit."

    If spirit means the life-force within Stephen that ceases to exist when the body dies, then Stephen's request here makes no sense. If this is the meaning of spirit, there is nothing for God to receive. Clearly, Stephen believed his spirit would survive the death of his body and be received by God.

    1 Thessalonians 4:13-17
    13 But I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope.
    14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
    15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive
    and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.
    16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.
    17 Then we who are alive
    and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.

    "...the term "sleep" is always applied in Scripture to the body alone, since in death the body takes on the appearance of one who is asleep. But the term soul sleep is never found in Scripture. And no where does the Scripture state that the soul ever passes into a state of unconsciousness." - Reasoning from the Scriptures with Jehovah's Witnesses, pg. 314.

    Who is God bringing with Him on the Day of Resurrection? Those who "sleep in Jesus." That is, the souls of those whose bodies are "sleeping" in the grave and are about to be resurrected. And when the Lord shouts with the voice of the archangel and the trumpet of God, those bodies that are "dead in Christ" rise first, reunited with the souls of those whom God has brought with Him. Again, we see here that the soul survives the death of the body and goes on to dwell with God.

    Luke 20:37-38
    37 But even Moses showed in the burning bush passage that the dead are raised, when he called the Lord 'the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.'
    38 For
    He is not the God of the dead but of the living, for all live to Him."

    As Jesus points out here, Moses believed that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were not dead and gone, but living because God is "not the God of the dead but of the living." Jesus here directly refutes the belief of the Sadducees, which was that the soul died with the body. And he was not merely asserting that God was God over those to be later resurrected.

    "Though the dead seem to us to be completely non-existent, they are actually living as far as God is concerned. Note that the tense of the word "live" is not future (which might suggest only that these dead will live at the time of their resurrection) but present, teaching us that they are living now. This holds true not only for the patriarchs but for all who have died. To suggest, now, that Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are nonexistent between death and the resurrection violates the thrust of these words, and implies that God is, with respect to these patriarchs, for a long period of time the God of the dead rather than the God of the living." - Reasoning from the Scriptures with Jehovah's Witnesses, pg. 316.

    Philippians 1:21-23
    21 For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
    22 But if
    I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I cannot tell.
    23 For I am hard pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ,
    which is far better.

    How could being dead and thus non-existent be "gain" to Paul? Clearly, he did not think the "gain" of which he was speaking was the extinction of his soul with the death of his body, but the departure of his soul from his body to be with Christ. And Paul is not speaking here of a future resurrection. The aorist infinitive ("to live") is linked by a single article with a present infinitive ("to be with Christ"). Thus the infinitives belong together.

    "The single article ties the two infinitives together, so that the actions depicted by the two infinitives are to be considered two aspects of the same thing, or two sides of the same coin." - Reasoning from the Scriptures with Jehovah's Witnesses, pg. 317.

    2 Corinthians 5:6-8
    6 So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord.
    7 For we walk by faith, not by sight.
    8 We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord.


    The structure of these verses in the Greek communicates very clearly that Paul understood that dying (being absent from the body) meant being present with the Lord. And the word "with" in Greek suggests very close face-to-face fellowship or intimate relationship.
     
  3. greenguzzi

    greenguzzi Post-Evangelical, Social Anarchist, One of The Way

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    You are assuming that time is the same in heaven as it is on Earth. I don't know of any reason why this should be the case. In which case the difference between the two teachings is negligible.
     
  4. dms1972

    dms1972 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    There is Moses and Elijah's appearing on the mountain with Jesus during the transfiguration. How would that happen if they were in a soul-sleep?
     
  5. greenguzzi

    greenguzzi Post-Evangelical, Social Anarchist, One of The Way

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    Those scriptures only make "clear" what you have previously decided. The same scriptures are perfectly compatible with soul sleep.
     
  6. greenguzzi

    greenguzzi Post-Evangelical, Social Anarchist, One of The Way

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    Maybe not everyone is in soul sleep, just most people. There are clear exceptions to the norm in scripture (regardless of what you think that "norm" might be).
     
  7. BobRyan

    BobRyan Junior Member

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    Clearly they are not in soul sleep in Matthew 17

    The reason for that is --

    1. Elijah never died - 2 Kings 2 we are told he was translated directly to heaven. The 1 Thess 4 statement about sleep only applies to what Paul calls "the dead in Christ" in that chapter - not "those who are taken directly to heaven without dying".

    2. Moses is alive and not in a state of soul sleep in Matthew 17 because he was resurrected. The story was recorded in a book that Jude quotes regarding the incident where Michael and the devil are in dispute over the body of Moses after death at the point where Moses is about to be resurrected. Jude quotes from the book "The Assumption of Moses" and points to it as a real historic event. See Jude 1:9
     
  8. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    It was a vision to represent those that had died for their faith---do you really believe that God keeps the souls of those people crammed under His altar begging Him for how much longer must thy be under there?? God said Able's blood cried out to Him--you really think blood has the capability of speaking put loud? If we went directly to heaven what would be the purpose of Jesus returning to resurrect us---God does not need an old carcass to give us bodies--He made them for Adam and Eve---He will resurrect those that have been burned up, those that have been drowned and their bodies lost to the oceans. He will remake those--so why not remake them in heaven? If we get our reward at death--Jesus would not say
    Rev_22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.
     
  9. Basil the Great

    Basil the Great Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If the Catholic Church is right and Purgatory exists, then most Christians on this website, including Catholics, might be a little disappointed when they pass on to the next life.
     
  10. martymonster

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    What would be the point of a resurrection, if we were already alive?
    Also, since we are going to be resurrected in spiritual bodies, then what are the dead in, if they are alive somewhere else? Makes no sense!
     
  11. ewq1938

    ewq1938 Chewbacca kree! Supporter

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    So this is based on an extra-biblical source. There is nothing in scripture that states Moses was resurrected. He awaits the resurrection like all the saved dead are and all the dead are fully awake as the scriptures teach.

    Rev 1:7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

    Every eye shall see him, even those that had pierced him though they died long ago. If they were asleep they couldn't witness his return!

    Rev 6:9 And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
    Rev 6:10 And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?

    Here John seeing a future event in heaven and he sees the souls of the dead and they are fully alert and talking. They are not sleeping.

    Isa 14:9 Hell from beneath is moved for thee to meet thee at thy coming: it stirreth up the dead for thee, even all the chief ones of the earth; it hath raised up from their thrones all the kings of the nations.
    Isa 14:10 All they shall speak and say unto thee, Art thou also become weak as we? art thou become like unto us?


    How can the dead ask such a pertinent question if they are asleep?

    All scriptures that speak of the spirit/soul of the dead show them to be fully awake.
     
  12. ewq1938

    ewq1938 Chewbacca kree! Supporter

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    A great article on this subject:

    What is soul sleep? | CARM.org

     
  13. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    There is no "resurrection" for those that are alive! You can only resurrect the dead! Jesus comes to call us all awake. Those that are alive when He comes are still "changed"--

    1Co 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
    1Co 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
    1Co 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
    1Co 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

    The living wicked are killed with the brightness of His coming---the dead wicked remain so until after the 1000 years.
    Rev_20:5 But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
     
  14. martymonster

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    I don't mean alive as in "physically dead" I mean alive as spirits. What happens to all those that are alive as spirits? Do they all get sucked into their new spiritual bodies?
     
  15. BobRyan

    BobRyan Junior Member

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    Clearly they are not in soul sleep in Matthew 17

    The reason for that is --

    1. Elijah never died - 2 Kings 2 we are told he was translated directly to heaven. The 1 Thess 4 statement about sleep only applies to what Paul calls "the dead in Christ" in that chapter - not "those who are taken directly to heaven without dying".

    2. Moses is alive and not in a state of soul sleep in Matthew 17 because he was resurrected. The story was recorded in a book that Jude 1:9 quotes regarding the incident where Michael and the devil are in dispute over the body of Moses after death at the point where Moses is about to be resurrected. Jude quotes from the book "The Assumption of Moses" and points to it as a real historic event. See Jude 1:9

    1. If your argument is that Jude 1:9 and 2 Kings 2 are "extra biblical" then your objection is note but will not be taken that seriously in general.
    2. If your argument is that Jude 1:9 is referencing an "extrabiblical source" in the Bible - then take it up with Jude -- your argument is "with the text" in that case.
    3. If your argument is that we should pay no attention to the refrence that Jude is making in Jude 1:9 -- lots of luck with that. I prefer to be informed on that detail. I don't find the solution of "ignore the details" to be that usesul.


    Souls in heaven bound/confined to be "under the altar" in Rev 6 is pure symbolism. Just as Rev 12 with a Dragon whose tail sweeps out 1/3 of the stars in the universe. Apocalyptic text uses symbols.

    Is this the part where you are asking to have John 11 and 1 Thess 4 quoted again??
     
  16. BobRyan

    BobRyan Junior Member

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    They are "fallen asleep" according to 1 Thess 4 and the text says 'Christ brings with Him" those who have fallen asleep at the 2nd coming and resurrection of the saints - just as 1 Cor 15 describes that event as the time when we all get immortal bodies - who are saints.
     
  17. Daniel Martinovich

    Daniel Martinovich Friend Supporter

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    Both are false and both came from ancient Jewish thought because there was simply not enough info on the subject in the OT for them to come to a correct conclusion. The Apostles also wrestled with the subject because of this. Jesus however was the light and brought the light and cleared up the question.

    Depending on the context of the verses the word resurrection is used to convey the idea that there is immediate life after death that includes a physical body. (Not physical as we know physical, but a physical body none the less.)


    Matthew 22: 23-32. The same day the Sadducees came to him (Jesus), which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him………… 29. Jesus answered and said to them, You err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. 30. For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. 31. But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have you not read that which was spoken to you by God, saying, 32. I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living 33. And when the multitude heard this, they were astonished at his doctrine. Jesus directly used the term “the resurrection” to describe the fact that the patriarchs were alive, not dead and the multitude was astonished by this statement. Why would that be? The belief that there was life after death was held by the vast majority of the multitude. They were certainly not astonished that Jesus would say the Patriarchs were alive anymore than Christians today would not be astonished; it is something they already believe. One can only assume they were astonished because they understood Jesus to say the Patriarchs were already resurrected, something that they understood to be a one time future event at the end of the world. As Martha states here: John 11: 23. Jesus said to her, Your brother shall rise again. 24. Martha said to him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. 25. Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: It was not unusual for Christ to differ with the culturally accepted beliefs of his day. What is strange, is that this scripture messes with consensus views of Christians today; as if nothing has ever changed in what believers hold to be true.
    Here's an example to bring the significance of this scripture to light. Say there was a funeral of a child who from a family where they were all professing Christians. How often would their fellow Christians seek to comfort them with the words, "your child is in a better place , he is with Jesus now alive and happy and will be in heaven waiting for you." It's comforting and true! Yet if someone said the same words like this: "He is with Jesus now resurrected and happy and will be in heaven waiting for you." There would be looks of puzzlement, people may be offended, in fact the person in question may get a call from the pastor. Yet this is exactly how Jesus used the word resurrection, to describe the fact of immediate life after death that has nothing to do with dead bodies made alive, graves opening or future events.


    There is something further to notice about Jesus’ answer in Matthew 22:30 concerning the physical nature of the simple life after death resurrected body: For in the resurrection they ….. are as the angels of God in heaven. The Bible calls angels spirits in Hebrews 1:14. Are they not all ministering spirits..... Yet angels throughout the scripture have physical bodies. They may not be physical as we understand physical, but in the scriptures they eat, drink, appear, disappear, walk through walls, are constantly mistaken for men, and take on different form, walk in fire, etc. etc. The point being is that our "inward" man is a spirit, just like the angels are spirits. We are not a cloud or a mist that floats around when these bodies die. When we step out of these bodies we step out on feet, we have legs, we have a body. It is physical, just not flesh and bone as we know physical right now. This can be seen in great detail in the scriptures below.

    Here are three Bible stories that demonstrate point #1 again but also point #3 where a mans earthy physical body was changed into a heavenly physical body. Deuteronomy 34: 5. So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab , according to the word of the Lord. 6. And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Bethpeor: but no man knows of his tomb unto this day. 2 Kings 2:11. And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, which separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. Luke 9: 28. About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up to a mountain to pray. 29. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. 30. Two men, Moses and Elijah, 31.Appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem.: We have two men. One of them, Moses; died, buried, his body still in the ground. The other Elijah, caught away to heaven. Yet here they are, both speaking to Jesus with the same bodies: they are alive, resurrected, and they have the appearance of angels. If resurrection is a one time future event how did this make it into the Bible? Moses has the same body as Elijah, Moses dead and buried and Elijah "raptured." See how this fits into the narrative of Jesus that in the resurrection they are physically. like the angels?

    In another example of point #1 we have a story that includes someone who did not go to heaven but hell: Luke 16: 19. There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day. 20. And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores, 21. And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. 22. And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; 23. And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and sees Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. 25. But Abraham said, Son, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and you are tormented. 26. And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from here to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from there. 27. Then he said, I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house: 28. For I have five brothers; that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment. 29. Abraham answered him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them. 30. And he said, No, father Abraham: but if one went to them from the dead, they will repent. 31. And he said to him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead. This is not the end of the world; the rich man still has unbelieving kinfolk on earth, and Jesus said there "was" a certain rich man, indicating this happened in the past, before Christ and the NT. Also these individuals have physical bodies that are recognizable; the rich man recognizes both Lazarus and Abraham. Then there is the use of this language: he lifted up his eyes and saw; he is thirsty and wants a drop of water on his tongue because he is tormented in fire, clearly indicating a body. Plus he still cares for the welfare of his family even though he is in hell. These are not awaiting resurrection, they are already resurrected and it is the past. So how can it be said that the Bible teaches a one time future event called the resurrection when we have these examples of people already resurrected?

    From:Resurrection


    [​IMG]
     
  18. BobRyan

    BobRyan Junior Member

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    Very true. But that is a "Big IF" and not at all supported by the Bible.
     
  19. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    Ecc_9:5 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.
    Ecc 9:6 Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.
    Ecc 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.
    Ecc 12:7 Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
    Gen 2:7 And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

    Gen_6:17 And, behold, I, even I, do bring a flood of waters upon the earth, to destroy all flesh, wherein is the breath of life, from under heaven; and every thing that is in the earth shall die.
    Gen_7:15 And they went in unto Noah into the ark, two and two of all flesh, wherein is the breath of life.
    Gen_7:22 All in whose nostrils was the breath of life, of all that was in the dry land, died.
    2Sa_22:16 And the channels of the sea appeared, the foundations of the world were discovered, at the rebuking of the LORD, at the blast of the breath of his nostrils.

    Psa_33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.
    Psa_104:29 Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust.


    It is the same breath that God breathed into all creation.
     
  20. mmksparbud

    mmksparbud Well-Known Member

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    Oh---They aren't alive as spirits---the dead know not anything.
     
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