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Mike's Origins Resources: A PhD Creationist's view of science, origins, and the future hope of the human race; by looking at Creation Science, Biblical Evidence, and Prophecy Molecular History Research Center What happens when we die? Do we go to Heaven or Hell right away when we die? What does Jesus mean by sleep?
What happens during the 1000 years following Jesus' Second Coming? What about Judgement and what does the Bible say?
Hell Fire, Does it last forever? Is Satan in charge of Hell? Do people really moan and groan forever in agony and pain?
Are the Wicked Tormented Day and Night for Ever and Ever as mentioned in Revelation? What then is the second death?

why I became a scientist who is a creationist

What Happens When We Die?

Is Death Permanent?
What Does the Bible Say?

What does the Bible say will happen to us when we die? Will we know anything and be able to think after we die or will everything go black? Can the dead, those who have died, really speak to us? Who did Saul actually talk to in the cave of the witch of Endor? Was it Samuel or was it an impostor?

The Bible tells us the truth that we need to know about death. The Bible also warns us of danger. There is imminent danger for those who do not know the truth about death. What is it?

Some people believe that dead people come back to haunt their old house or even people. They believe that the dead can even talk to us. But did you know that the Bible specifically warns us not to try to communicate with dead people? What is the danger?

  1. "There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer,
  2. "or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.
  3. "For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you. Deuteronomy 18:10-12

The purpose of this study is to answer these and other questions from the Bible and to let the Bible speak for itself.

Bible Promises Speak of Our Victory over Death

Because death can be so heart wrenching we must look at the promises that God has given to assure us of the victory, that Jesus will give us, over death. In the next section, we will delve into what the Bible teaches about death.

Death is a terrible thing, yet because Jesus has promised eternal life to those who believe Him and follow His teachings; We know that death does not have to be the frightening event that ends our life.

These Bible promises have meant a lot to me, especially since the time I lost both my mother and sister, and now I have lost my father. It is my wish that you might also want to delight in the joys of God's promises.

I love this first verse. There is a promise in this text that is all encompassing and I do believe that it relates to our topic of death.

  1. And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

Does this promise, that all things work together for good to them that love God, also include death? Yes, it must include death if this promise is to mean anything at all to us. What good is a promise from God if we cannot trust in it when we really need it?

Death is certainly one of the most serious and troubling problems we have in life. We will all face it eventually. But as I look to the Bible for answers I find that Jesus specifically came to talk about our future and the kingdom of God. That means this promise really does include everything! Jesus is the answer to all our problems!

So, the promise that "all things work together for good to them that love God" means that our death does not take God by surprise. He has something planned for us that is yet to occur. Actually, God Himself is looking for the day when He will come to take us home with Him.

Let's now look at some of the other promises that relate to death.

  1. Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning. Psalm 30:5 (last part)

The joy that comes in the morning is speaking of what happens when we wake up after we have died. It is then that we will see Jesus and we will realize that He is responsible for this joy.

  1. . . . "Death is swallowed up in victory.
  2. O death, where is your sting? O grave, where is your victory?"
  3. The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
  4. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:54-57

So, when our friends die or even if we ourselves are having to face death, yes, there can be bitter weeping, because death is awful; But we must remember that in the morning, when Jesus comes as He has promised; It is then that there will be joy and happiness!

  1. I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that Day. 2 Timothy 1:12 (last part).

These things are nothing to be ashamed of. God is able to keep us and remember us so that when that Day comes, in the resurrection of the last day, we will come out of the grave to see and be with Jesus!

At times, death seems very permanent, especially as we see our loved ones lowered into the ground. However, I know that God is able to keep me until the day of His soon coming because I have committed myself to Him. And I know that He will do that for you too. He will do that for both us and our loved ones, all those who commit themselves to Him.

  1. Casting all your care upon Him; for He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
  1. As a father pities his children, So the LORD pities those who fear Him. Psalms 103:13
  1. I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. Hebrews 13:5 (last part)

All these promises include death. God will never leave us nor will he forsake us. He pities all those who fear him (respect and honor) and since we have placed our worries on Him, He will care for us. Even in death!

  1. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Psalms 23:4.

All of us will have to face death, but even though we pass through the valley of the shadow of death, there will be no need to fear because God is with us! When we come out of the ground, we will come forth as gold and we will not be orphans because Jesus has taken us in!

  1. But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold. Job 23:10.
  1. I will not leave you orphans: I will come to you. John 14:18.
  1. As one whom his mother comforts, So I will comfort you; And you shall be comforted. Isaiah 66:13 (first part).
  1. For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. 2 Chronicles 16:9 (first part).
  1. The angel of the LORD encamps all around those who fear Him, And delivers them.
  2. Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him! Psalms 34:7-8.

Because of all His promises to us, God is a comfort to us even as we approach death. Truly, we are blessed if we trust in Jesus because He will raise us up in the last day!

Many of these promises actually refer to when Jesus comes again. When Jesus comes all wrongs will be righted and He will speedily release all His people from the grave. Also look at my page concerning the second coming of Christ. In the descriptions of Christ's final coming are some of the most powerful promises found in the Bible!

Now, let us see what the Bible says will happen to us when we die:

Jesus speaks of death as sleep

Jesus always referred to death as a sleep. This is comforting because we know that sleep is not permanent. When Lazarus died, He told His disciples that Lazarus is now sleeping.

  1. These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.
  2. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well.
  3. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep.
  4. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead. John 11:11-14.

It is interesting that when Jesus used the word "sleep" that the disciples misunderstood his meaning. Apparently, in Christ's time, people did not understand the temporary nature of death. The Sadducees could have been the cause of this since they did not believe in the resurrection. They believed that once they were dead, that was it. But it is clear that Jesus did not think this way at all and He used this situation to teach His disciples.

  1. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, in order that you may believe. But let us go to him.
  2. Then Thomas (he being called Twin) said to his fellow disciples, Let us also go, that we may die with Him. John 11:15-16.

There is much that Jesus needed to teach His disciples. When Jesus talked to Martha, He told her that whoever believed in Him, even if they die, they will yet live. They will never die.

  1. Then Martha said to Jesus, Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died.
  2. But I know that even now, whatever You will ask of God, God will give You.
  3. Jesus said to her, Your brother shall rise again.
  4. Martha said to Him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.
  5. Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life! He who believes in Me, though he die, yet he shall live.
  6. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?
  7. She said to Him, Yes, Lord, I have believed that You are the Christ, the Son of God, who has come into the world. John 11:21-27.

This is amazing! Jesus says that whoever lives and believes in Him, they will never die! Jesus wanted to get across to them that He is the Resurrection and the Life! Whoever believes in Him, though we die, yet we will live again!

Now we know that all people die. But we have already seen that Jesus does not consider that death is really death. It is a temporary sleep:

  1. And when Jesus came into the ruler's house and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise,
  2. He said to them, Go back, for the little girl is not dead, but sleeps. And they laughed Him to scorn.
  3. But when the people were put out, He went in and took her by the hand, and the little girl arose.
  4. And this report went out into all that land. Matthew 9:23-26.

Now the girl was dead. But Jesus does not even consider that death is actually death. He told them that the girl was not dead but only sleeping. Jesus sees death as only a sleep. That is why, if we believe in Jesus, though we die, we will yet live. All this is because Jesus is the resurrection and the life.

The people had seen Jesus heal people. When someone was sick, Jesus is the one whom they thought to call for help. But to have Jesus raise someone from the dead was not thought of yet. They did not even think to ask.

  1. Then when Mary had come where Jesus was, seeing Him, Mary fell down at His feet, saying to Him, Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died. John 11:32.

But Jesus had something special to teach them.

  1. And He said, Where have you laid him? They said to Him, Lord, come and see.
  2. Jesus wept.
  3. Then the Jews said, Behold how He loved him!
  4. And some of them said, Was not this Man who opened the eyes of the blind able also to cause that even this one should not have died?
  5. Then Jesus, groaning in Himself again, came to the tomb. And it was a cave, and a stone lay upon it.
  6. Jesus said, Take away the stone. Martha, the sister of him who died, said to Him, Lord, by this time he stinks. For it is the fourth day.
  7. Jesus answered her, Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?
  8. Then they took away the stone where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, Father, I thank You that You have heard Me.
  9. And I know that You hear Me always, but because of the people who stand by I said it, so that they may believe that You have sent Me.
  10. And saying these things, He cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, Here! Outside! (Lazarus, come forth!)
  11. And he who had died came out, bound hand and foot with sheets, and his face was bound with a cloth. Jesus said to them, Untie him and let him go! John 11:34-44. MKJV

No one believed that Jesus could do anything in the death of Lazarus. Even Martha objected when He asked that the stone be taken away. But Jesus wanted to show the glory of God to them and He groaned within Himself at the total lack of faith that the people had. And so He brought Lazarus to life that they may believe that God the Father has sent Him to us and that He has power over death because He is the resurrection and the life!

  1. Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life! He who believes in Me, though he die, yet he shall live.
  2. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this? John 11:25-26.

It is because Jesus has power over death that he sees death as only a temporary state. Jesus always referred to death as a sleep.

Look at Paul's assurance to the Christians in Thessalonica. He also describes the dead as sleeping, and that they will rise again when Jesus comes!

  1. But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
  2. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
  3. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
  4. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 1 Thessalonians 4:13-16.

Death is referred to as a sleep 66 times in the Bible. I have listed them here.

    Thou (Moses) shall sleep with thy fathers. Deuteronomy 31:16.
    Thou (David) shalt sleep with thy fathers. 2 Samuel 7:12.
    The king (David) shall sleep with his fathers. 1 Kings 1:21.
    So David slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 2:10.
    David slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 11:21.
    He (Jeroboam) slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 14:20.
    Rehoboam slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 14:31.
    Abijam slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 15:8.
    Asa slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 15:24.
    Baasha slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 16:6.
    Omri slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 16:28.
    Ahab slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 22:40.
    Jehosaphat slept with his fathers. 1 Kings 22:50.
    Joram slept with his fathers. 2 Kings 8:24
    Jehu slept with his fathers. 2 Kings 10:35.
    Jehoahaz slept with his fathers. 2 Kings 13:9.
    I should have slept. Job 3:13.
    Now shall I sleep. Job 7:21.
    They have slept their sleep. Psalm 76:5.
    And sleep a perpetual sleep. Jeremiah 51:39.
    Them that sleep in the dust. Daniel 12:2.
    Is not dead, but sleepeth. Matthew 9:24.
    Lazarus sleepeth. John 11:11.
    Some are fallen asleep. 1 Corinthians 15:6.
    Concerning them which are asleep. 1 Thessalonians 4:13.
    Since the fathers fell asleep. 2 Peter 3:4.

"Sleep" is clearly the biblical term for death. Here are the rest of the texts which refer to death as "sleep." They are:

    2 Kings 13:13; 14:16,22,29; 15:7,22,38; 16:20; 20:21; 21:18; 24:6;
    2 Chronicles 9:31; 12:16; 14:1; 16:13; 21:1; 26:2,23; 27:9; 28:27
    2 Chronicles 32:33; 33:20; Job 14:12; Psalm 13:3; 76:6; 90:5
    Jeremiah 51:57; Matthew 27:52; Mark 5:39; Luke 8:52; Acts 7:60
    Acts 13:36; 1 Corinthians 11:30; 15:18,20.

Clearly, both in the Old and New Testaments, "sleep" is used to describe death. To them it was a sleep till Jesus or the Messiah comes!

Man Became a Living Soul

To better understand what happens to us when we die and enter that sleep, let us look at what happened when the first man, Adam was created.

  1. 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. Genesis 2:7.

The Hebrew word for "soul" is: Hebrew for spirit or breath or "nephesh" (Strongs No. 7307) which is pronounced (neh' fesh). Nephesh means soul, living being, life, person etc. It basically means a living person.

So, we can see from looking at Genesis 2:7 that God did two things to create Adam:

    1) He formed a man from the dust (dirt or clay) of the ground.

    2) He breathed into the form of dust the breath of life.

And so, Adam, the first man, became a living soul! Adam became a living being or a living person. It is interesting that Adam was not given a soul. The verse says that the man became a living soul.

A soul is a living person. Below we see Exodus 1:5 in two versions that I have placed side-by-side. In the King James Version (KJV) we have "seventy souls" but in the New King James Version (NKJV) we have "seventy persons". It can be translated either way and they really mean the same thing:

5.  And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already. Exodus 1:5 KJV
5.  All those who were descendants of Jacob were seventy persons (for Joseph was in Egypt already). Exodus 1:5 NKJV

In the New Testament as well we find that souls are people.

  1. Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. Acts 2:41 NKJV
  1. who formerly were disobedient, when once the Divine longsuffering waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 1 Peter 3:20 NKJV

So, it is important to notice that Man is not given a soul. Instead we read that He became a living soul when the breath of life was added to the dust of the ground! As we look at more Bible, we will see that this is an important difference.

The fact that we are made of dust and have the breath of life is mentioned by a variety of Bible writers. Here are just a few quotes:

  1. But now, O LORD, You are our Father; We are the clay, and You our potter; And all we are the work of Your hand. Isaiah 64:8
  1. As a father pities his children, So the LORD pities those who fear Him.
  2. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust. Psalms 103:13-14.
  1. The Spirit of God has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life. Job 33:4

As we can see, Job mentions that the Almighty gives him life. So, When God formed dust out of the ground and then gave it the breath of life, man became a living soul.

Now, what happens when we die?

When the Soul Dies, The Breath Returns to God and the Dust Returns to the Ground.

The Bible actually teaches that the soul dies:

  1. "Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father As well as the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die. Ezekiel 18:4

To remind us how Adam became a living soul, here is the verse in Genesis again.

  1. 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. Genesis 2:7.

When we die, we would expect things to go in reverse. We lose the breath and the dust decays into the ground.

  1. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. Ecclesiastes 12:7.

We see that we have the dust returning to the ground, this makes sense since that is reversing what happens when we become a living soul.

Let's look at the word for "spirit". The "spirit" returns to God. This almost sounds like our soul is returning to God. But if we look at the Hebrew word Hebrew for spirit or breath or "ruwach" (Strongs No. 7307) which is pronounced (roo' -akh), we find it can mean spirit, wind, breath, or even mind on a few occasions. So this same word means both spirit and breath!

Here is another text that has the same two parts (dust and the breath of life) come apart when we die. Except now the translators have actually called it the breath.

  1. Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust. Psalms 104:29.

The same Hebrew word, Hebrew for spirit or breath or "ruwach", that is translated as "spirit" in Ecclesiastes 12:7 is now translated as "breath" in Psalms 104:29. The translators seem to use "spirit" and "breath" interchangeably. In Psalms 104:29, we see that God takes away the breath when people die. The body itself returns to dust.

So we see the same two parts come apart as we saw come together when man became a living soul. In the next verse the consequences of sin is described:

  1. In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return. Genesis 3:19

When Adam and Eve sinned, God told them that since they came from the ground, and since they had sinned, they will return to the ground.

So, when we die, our body returns back to dust and the spirit or breath of life returns to God.

Now, what is it that returns to God? We have two possibilities:

    1) If man becomes a living soul when we are born or created, then when we die, if we cease from being a living soul; It would make sense that we would stop knowing anything when we die. We would have no thoughts from that point on.

    2) On the other hand, if our soul goes back to heaven when we die as a disembodied being, it would make sense that we would continue to think and to know that we exist. Our thoughts would continue.

What is it that happens? Do all our thoughts stop when we die, or do we just go to Heaven when we die without our bodies?

The Dead do not Know Anything

The Bible is very plain. It says the dead do not know anything. Look at this text:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  1. 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. Ecclesiastes 9:5-6,10.

Now for the first time we see death described. "The dead know not any thing!" Everything about them is gone, their memory, their love, their hatred, their envy, and they no longer act. They are asleep. They are nonexistent.

  1. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Psalms 146:4.

Again we see that when the breath of life goes back to God and the body returns to dust, that their thoughts perish. It should be clear that the dead cannot talk, or think or do anything. They essentially no longer exist as a living thinking person.

This agrees with what we saw before. Adam became a living person. He became a living soul. So now, when we die, we cease from being a living person. We cease from being a living soul. We no longer exist because our thoughts perish.

This also agrees with Jesus' description of death. He called it sleep as we saw earlier.

There is more.

  1. The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.
  2. But we will bless the LORD from this time forth and for evermore. Praise the LORD. Psalms 115:17-18.

So a major difference is made. The dead cannot praise God at all but those who live can.

  1. Return, O LORD, deliver my soul: oh save me for thy mercies' sake.
  2. For in death there is no remembrance of thee: in the grave who shall give thee thanks? Psalms 6:4-5.
  1. Behold, for peace I had great bitterness: but thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption: for thou hast cast all my sins behind thy back.
  2. For the grave cannot praise thee, death can not celebrate thee: they that go down into the pit cannot hope for thy truth.
  3. The living, the living, he shall praise thee, as I do this day: the father to the children shall make known thy truth. Job 38:17-19.

Apparently a few of the writers in Psalms and also Job, are pleading to be delivered by God. They are saying to God that they can praise Him if they are alive but if they die they can no longer give God thanks.

  1. Who shall declare his way to his face? And who shall repay him what he hath done?
  2. Yet shall he be brought to the grave, and shall remain in the tomb. Job 21:31-32.
  1. As the cloud is consumed and vanisheth away: so he that goeth down to the grave shall come up no more.
  2. He shall return no more to his house, neither shall his place know him any more.
  3. Therefore I will not refrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul. Job 7:9-11

Job sees that his only future is the grave and death. Job sees this fate of his as depressing to the point that he is anguishing in bitterness over his death and does not stop complaining to God.

However, as we will see in the next few sections that there is indeed a promise of a bright future for God's people who descend into the sleep of the grave.

In Mercy God hides His people from trouble

In Mercy, God asks His people to rest a little while. He says: "enter thou into thy chambers (the grave), and shut thy doors about thee and hide yourself as it were for a little moment until all this trouble is ended". Only after the trouble and God's indignation (wrath) is ended will God's people wake up and sing. That is the day when the earth will cast out the dead. It is the resurrection of the righteous at the last day.

  1. Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
  2. Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
  3. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. Isaiah 26:19-21

God's people are sleeping the sleep of death. It is as if they are hidden from all the trouble that is in the world. They will not know of any of it nor will they be aware of the time they are asleep since all their thoughts have stopped. They know nothing.

In verse 20 above and verse 13 below, there is a suggestion of a purpose for death. It allows the righteous to sleep while trouble covers the Earth. This trouble will greatly increase at the end. Thus this sleep will increasingly be a special blessing at the end. After that: Behold, the LORD cometh out of his place and punish the wicked inhabitants. . . so that the dead in Christ can arise!

  1. So man lieth down, and riseth not: till the heavens be no more, they shall not awake, nor be raised out of their sleep.
  2. O that thou wouldest hide me in the grave, that thou wouldest keep me secret, until thy wrath be past, that thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me! Job 14:12-13

As we get older, we can get tired of the wickedness and trouble that surrounds us. In the end of time there will be a special time of trouble. It will be a time such as there never was before, so great will the trouble be. As a blessing to us, God will hide many of us in the grave but he gives us that special promise that He will raise us up again, after the time of God's great wrath against the wicked.

  1. "At that time Michael shall stand up, The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people; And there shall be a time of trouble, Such as never was since there was a nation, Even to that time. And at that time your people shall be delivered, Every one who is found written in the book.
  2. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. Daniel 12:1-2.

God will raise up His people, but He will also raise up a special group of wicked people. We will see who this group is later when we look at the different resurrections.

The sleeping dead will one day rise again!

We already saw that death is described as a sleep. The Bible also tells us that the sleeping dead will rise up again. God has promised that He will not leave His people in the grave:

  1. I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes. Hosea 13:14.

God will destroy death and redeem His people from the power of the grave! It is because of Jesus that we have this assurance. He is the Resurrection and the Life!

  1. Jesus said to her, I am the Resurrection and the Life! He who believes in Me, though he die, yet he shall live.
  2. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this? John 11:25-26.

Jesus was the firstfruits; And because He was resurrected from the dead, we will also be resurrected:

  1. But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
  2. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
  3. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
  4. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. 1 Corinthians 15:20-23.

Since Jesus was raised from the dead we now have the assurance that those in Christ will also be made alive once more. He will raise all those who are in Christ. So, God will redeem His righteous from their sleep of death.

So, we are not to sorrow as other people who have no hope. Because we know that Jesus died and rose again, we know that those of us who are Christ's will also rise again and Jesus will take them back to heaven:

  1. But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
  2. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
  3. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-15.

In verse 14, it almost sounds like Jesus is bringing the dead, who are sleeping in Jesus, with Him from Heaven to the earth. However if we keep reading we will find that the opposite is actually happening. Jesus will actually be taking them back to heaven after He picks them up from their graves at the second coming!

We can especially see this in verses 16 and 17 below. Jesus will take back to heaven not only those who have died, but He will also take back all His people who are still alive at that point when He comes. He picks up all His people at one time:

  1. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
  2. Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
  3. Wherefore comfort one another with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18.

This is the big event we are all waiting for, and this is the order in how the events will occur: When Jesus comes, He will descend from heaven and shout, and then all those who have died (fallen asleep in Christ) will rise. So, this verse tells us that those who have fallen asleep in Christ are raised to life on the last day, at the second coming of Christ and not before.

We can also see that those who are still alive, when Jesus comes, will also be caught up together with those who have died and are now risen. Thus, from that time on, we will always be together with the Lord!

Let's think about this. The dead in Christ are sleeping until Jesus actually descends from heaven and raises them up. That means they have been sleeping in the grave until that time. It is then that they are raised up to ever be with the Lord. Now that the righteous dead have been raised to life, it is then that Jesus brings those who have died back to heaven with Him. Jesus also takes all the righteous who are yet alive back to heaven as well.

Jesus also spoke of this time. He also says that the dead will rise up at the last day.

  1. This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day.
  2. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day. John 6:39-40.

In the last day there will be victory!

  1. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
  2. 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.
  3. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
  4. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, death is swallowed up in victory.
  5. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
  6. The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
  7. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57.

This is the very same promise that we find over and over in the Bible. The dead will be raised to life! Paul also tells us that not all people will die, but the people who were yet alive will be changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye when Jesus comes.

Paul then shifts his attention to those who have died: When the last trumpet sounds, all the dead who died in Christ will be raised with perfect bodies that are not damaged by sin. At this point they cry out "O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" The wonder of living again and with perfect bodies overwhelms them; And they give thanks to God who gave them the victory through Jesus Christ!

So, at the last trumpet, the dead will be raised with totally new bodies (the living will also be changed having totally new bodies). At that time, there will be no more death nor sickness nor aging!

In our sinful world, we are all getting old and we can see it in our bodies. We have wrinkles and cracked skin. We might even have missing parts. Maybe a leg had to be amputated. We might have lost our sight or our hearing has been greatly affected or lost all together. As we get even older we get additional spots and our skin no longer is smooth, but rather it starts to become translucent and hangs from our bones. We really start to look ugly!

Can you imagine what the righteous might look like in their new bodies. Old people will be young. Today, in our sinful world, even teenagers and people in their 20s, yes they look pretty good to us; However, even at their young age, their skin no longer looks like it did when they were babies. Yes, our skin is already showing its age by the time people are 20!

Can you imagine what our new bodies might look like? Adults will have full heads of hear like youths and smooth skin like very young children, yet they will have the form of a fully developed adult. For the first time, we will have bodies without the signs of sin; Without any sign of decay or aging!

  1. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
  2. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, death is swallowed up in victory.
  3. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
  4. 1 Corinthians 15:51-55.

Verse 53 above says that the righteous must put on immortality. It is at that point that God's people will become immortal. You see, they were not immortal before, they were only mortal before this event. The Bible is very clear on this point:

In the Bible, man is called mortal, he is NOT called immortal:

  1. Shall mortal man be more just than God? shall a man be more pure than his maker? Job 4:17

Before this change, all those who died, slept in the ground with no thoughts at all. They are certainly not immortal when they are in the grave.

A verse that gives light on this subject is John 3:16 which is perhaps the most famous verse in the Bible.

  1. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16.

We are promised that he (or she) who believes in Jesus, will not perish but they will have everlasting life!

At various times, Jesus has spoken about those who will be raised in the resurrection.

  1. And Jesus answering said unto them, The children of this world marry, and are given in marriage:
  2. But they which shall be accounted worthy to obtain that world, and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry, nor are given in marriage:
  3. Neither can they die any more: for they are equal unto the angels; and are the children of God, being the children of the resurrection. Luke 20:34-36.

So, the righteous will be like the angels after they rise again. They will have put on immortality and they cannot die any more.

A Couple of Special Resurrections have already Happened!

It is interesting to know that there have already been special resurrections in the past. There are even people who have never died!

  1. And it came to pass, when the LORD was about to take up Elijah into heaven by a whirlwind, that Elijah went with Elisha from Gilgal. 2 Kings 2:1

God took Elijah up into heaven in what looked like a chariot and horses of fire!

  1. Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
  2. And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, "My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!" So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces. 2 Kings 2:11-12

Instead of allowing Elijah to die of old age, God took him to heaven to live. Thus Elijah never died and today he is living in heaven!

This is how Elijah was able to visit Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration. We might remember that Jesus took a few of His disciple up to a high mountain and when they got to the top, Jesus was transfigured. When Christ's face started to shine like the sun, Moses and Elijah also appeared and they were able to talk some with Jesus.

  1. Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves;
  2. and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.
  3. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him.
  4. Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, "Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." Matthew 17:1-4

Yes, Moses is also living in heaven. Unlike Elijah who never died, Moses died and then he was raised to life in a special resurrection. This is hinted at in Jude:

  1. Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!" Jude 1:9

We can read in Deuteronomy 34:1-12 how Moses went up into Mount Nebo alone. On that mountain top, God showed him the land that the Israelites would possess and after that God laid him to rest. But we know from Jude that Michael came for Moses. Moses was not to remain in the grave.

The simple fact that Moses was alive to talk to Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration confirms that Moses was brought back to life. Except for those who are specially resurrected or who never die, all the rest of us will be brought back to life by Jesus when He comes at the last day. Thus, if Moses had not been specially resurrected he would not have been alive to be there with Jesus.

Here is another example of someone who never saw death. Enoch also was taken to heaven.

  1. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Genesis 5:21-24.

So, Enoch also never died.

  1. By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, "and was not found, because God had taken him"; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. Hebrews 11:5

This next example involves a group of people who were resurrected. They came out of their graves when Jesus died on the cross.

  1. Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.
  2. And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
  3. And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
  4. And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many. Matthew 27:50-53.

Here is a time when people all throughout Jerusalem saw people who were once dead but were now alive. This is another assurance that God can raise us up since He has already brought others up from their sleep.

The Righteous and Wicked will be
Resurrected at Different times!

Except for special resurrections everyone else waits for Jesus to wake them up at the last day. For most of us, there will be two great resurrections: In the first one, the righteous will be raised to life and they will have everlasting life. But in the second resurrection the wicked will wake up, but only to be placed in the flames of everlasting fire. (More will be mentioned about this later.)

  1. For as the Father hath life in himself; so hath he given to the Son to have life in himself;
  2. And hath given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man.
  3. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
  4. And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. John 5:26-29.

We must make sure that we wake up in the first resurrection and not the second!

In addition to the two great resurrections, there is an additional resurrection for those who specifically killed Jesus on the cross:

  1. But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, "I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!"
  2. Jesus said to him, "It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven." Matthew 26:63-64

When Jesus comes to raise the righteous, a special group of people who had a part in killing Jesus will also be raised so that they can see the person they killed coming in all the glory of His Father and with His angels.

  1. Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. Revelation 1:7.

Those who killed Jesus will see Jesus coming in the couds and they especially will be among those who morn because of Him. In Daniel, we can see that all people are not raised to see Jesus come. Only "many". So, we see that some will awake to receive everlasting contempt:

  1. And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
  2. And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. Daniel 12:2.

When Jesus comes, all the righteous, those who have their name written in the book of life, will be delivered from death. But in addition to these who receive everlasting life, we see that some will also be raised to receive shame and everlasting contempt. This group of shame was the group that Jesus was speaking of when He said, to those who were condemming Him to death, that they would see Him coming on the clouds of heaven.

Thus, these people will know that they actually put to death the Son of God who is coming to reward them of their evil. They will receive shame and everlasting contempt!

  1. For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. Matthew 16:27.

When Jesus comes He will reward every person according to what they have done in their lives. We know the righteous receive their reward at this time and we know that those who had a part in killing Jesus will also be there to receive their just shame. But is there anyone else?

There will also be wicked people still living on the earth when Jesus comes. They will also receive their shame as well.

The next section is on the great resurrection of the wicked. All the wicked will be raised at a later time. Even those who were alive to see Jesus come the second time. They will be brought up in the great resurrection of the wicked.

The Two Resurrections

We already saw that there were two big resurrections. Remember this text?

  1. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
  2. And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. John 5:26-29.

The first great resurrection is mainly for the righteous but the second resurrection is for the wicked exclusively.

In Revelation, we have additional information which shows that the wicked are resurrected 1000 years after the righteous are resurrected.

  1. And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
  2. But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection.
  3. Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years. Revelation 20:4-6.

For 1000 years, the righteous will live and reign with Jesus. It must be that something special is done for the righteous during this time. What ever it is that the righteous learn in this period of time, they apparently see the wisdom in the complete destruction of the wicked at the end. They are able to praise God for His victory.

We see that the rest of the dead, the wicked dead, do not live again until after the thousand years are ended. That must be the second resurrection, the resurrection of damnation which occurs a thousand years after the righteous are raised.

Since the wicked experience the second death, it must mean that they will either die or be killed. However the righteous will never again experience death. Those who are raised in the first resurrection of the righteous, the second death has no power!

  1. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death. Revelation 2:11.

The second death is only for the wicked. Those who overcomes will not be hurt at all. They are of the first resurrection. But the wicked are raised after the 1000 years and they will be hurt by the second death. They will face judgement.

  1. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. Revelation 21:8.

The wicked are described as having all sorts of sinful practices. All these will be destroyed in the second death. Please note that it does say death. They do not live forever. Only the righteous live for ever. Instead, the wicked face the second death in the fire and brimstone.

Remember that in one of the most beloved text of the Bible, John 3:16, people will either perish (the second death of the wicked) or they will have everlasting life (the righteous who have overcome).

  1. For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16.

At the end of the thousand years the wicked will be raised in the resurrection of the damned. They will be outside the city of God and thus they will surround it. But the saints will be inside the city:

  1. And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
  2. And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
  3. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
  4. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Revelation 20:7-10.

Some people think this text says that Satan will again tempt the righteous to sin against God, but this doesn't make any sense at all. Are we to expect that the righteous who have just lived and reigned with Jesus for a thousand years are going to be tempted to go against God all over again? No that does not make sense.

What we see is that the wicked will be destroyed. The fire comes down and devours them but the saints are safe inside the city of God, the New Jerusalem.

Remember, the righteous have already been raised in the first resurrection. That means they cannot be hurt by the second death, which means they will not die! They are free from sin forever because they have overcome! In fact, they have been judging the wicked for the last 1000 years. Would God allow them to fail after all that?

No, we must remember that the wicked are raised after the 1000 years to be judged. This is the same time that Satan is loosed out of his prison.

  1. But the rest of the dead [the wicked] lived not again until the thousand years were finished. . . . . Revelation 20:5.
  1. And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, Revelation 20:7.

If we look at Revelation 20:7-10 again we can see that Satan deceives the nations which are called Gog and Magog! This is the wicked. Now lets see what they do: They compassed the camp of the saints! The saints are not being tempted to sin, they are being attacked! So the wicked surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city! Satan is not tempting the saints, he is tempting the wicked to attack the saints once again!

  1. And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
  2. And shall go out to deceive the nations which are in the four quarters of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them together to battle: the number of whom is as the sand of the sea.
  3. And they went up on the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city: and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them.
  4. And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. Revelation 20:7-10.

So, Satan deceived the wicked nations of the world to attack God's people once more. That is when they moved to surround the beloved city.

The wicked are so numerous that they number as the sand of the sea. But it is then that they are destroyed. in verse 9 it says the fire devoured them.

Some seem to think that Satan is in charge of Hell. However, in this text, we see that both Satan and his prophet, both are also thrown into the fire to be destroyed. Satan can not be in charge of Hell if he himself is destroyed in Hell.

Now, in verse 10, The fire is said to torment the wicked day and night for ever and ever. However this is a translation problem. believe it or not, "forever and ever" can be translated more than one way. If you are interested, I have a special web page that deals with this issue: What is meant by for ever and ever in the Bible?

Also, the Bible is very clear that the wicked do NOT suffer for ever and ever and ever. In the Bible we repeatedly see that the wicked are destroyed. They will perish, they will be burned up until they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, they will be no more, they will cease to exist, etc. to see the Biblical evidence click on this link: Hell Fire, Does it last forever?

The righteous who are in the New Jerusalem when the wicked are destroyed will at that time then see the world made new. To see what happens more specifically to both the righteous and the wicked at the end, click on this link: What Happens During the 1000 Years Following Jesus' Second Coming?

Saul and Samuel in the Cave of the Witch of Endor

So, who did Saul actually talk to in the cave of the witch of Endor? Was it Samuel or was it an impostor?

Was Samuel actually raised up from the dead? Many believe that Samuel really came down from heaven. But did either of these things happen?

  1. And the king said to her, "Do not be afraid. What did you see?" And the woman said to Saul, "I saw a spirit ascending out of the earth."
  2. So he said to her, “What is his form?” And she said, "An old man is coming up, and he is covered with a mantle." And Saul perceived that it was Samuel, and he stooped with his face to the ground and bowed down.
  3. Now Samuel said to Saul, "Why have you disturbed me by bringing me up?" . . . 1 Samuel 28:13-15

If Samuel was truly righteous, many people would think that he would be in heaven. If he came from heaven, why would he still be an old man. Are not the righteous given new bodies when they go to heaven? Yet this Samuel is said to be a spirit without a body. Why then is he still looking old?

In the verses above we find that both the witch and the person, said to be Samuel, both indicated that he came up from the earth and not down from heaven. That must mean from the dead. This raises another question: Can a witch or even Satan raise a dead person to life from their grave? Only God can raise people to life. That is why we wait for the last day when Jesus comes to raise up the righteous people.

The spirit that looked and sounded like Samuel, was not Samuel at all. But it was an imposter, probably Satan. By asking questions the following verses say we should seek God and not the dead:

  1. And when they say to you, "Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter," should not a people seek their God? Should they seek the dead on behalf of the living?
  2. To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. Isaiah 8:19-20

We must not seek questions from the dead, but rather we should seek our God that we can ask Him questions! He is the one who made us and He will give us straight answers found in the Bible!

The dead that speak is a lie from the beginning since they are really demons in disguise.

Manassah was an extremely wicked king of Israel:

  1. And he did evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel. 2 Kings 21:2

After a full list of the evil things he did, the following is included:

  1. Also he made his son pass through the fire, practiced soothsaying, used witchcraft, and consulted spiritists and mediums. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger. 2 Kings 21:6

In the Bible, the act of going to a medium or wizard was considered an extremely evil thing to do. What it is, you are actually going to the enemy! It is Satan and/or his evil angels or demons that you are getting information from. It is no wonder that God calls it an abomination. All throughout the Bible, it is condemned. Look at the following Scripture:

  1. 'Give no regard to mediums and familiar spirits; do not seek after them, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God. Leviticus 19:31
  1. 'And the person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, to prostitute himself with them, I will set My face against that person and cut him off from his people. Leviticus 20:6

This is very serious! God will turn His back on you and you will be lost when you seek mediums and familiar spirits. It is witchcraft!

  1. 'A man or a woman who is a medium, or who has familiar spirits, shall surely be put to death; they shall stone them with stones. Their blood shall be upon them.'" Leviticus 20:27
  1. "There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer,
  2. "or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.
  3. "For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you. Deuteronomy 18:10-12
  1. "You shall not permit a sorceress to live. Exodus 22:18

In the New Testament we see that an evil spirit came out of the person who did fortune-telling:

  1. Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling.
  2. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, "These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation."
  3. And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her." And he came out that very hour. Acts 16:16-18

So we see that if anyone goes to a medium they are cut off from their people, and the medium is killed outright. These things are a work of Satan not God. It should not surprise us that an evil spirit came out of the slave girl. What she was doing was a work of Satan.

Now lets look at the story itself. in 1 Samuel 28: 3 we see that in the past, Saul himself had killed all the mediums: And Saul had put the mediums and the spiritists out of the land.

We also see that Saul has now done so many things against God that God will no longer talk to him: And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by the prophets. 1 Samuel 28:6

So Saul went to a medium instead of going to God. We find in 1 Chronicles that one of the reasons why God killed Saul is that he went to a medium for guidance. He actually went to Satan for help!

  1. So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the LORD, because he did not keep the word of the LORD, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance.
  2. But he did not inquire of the LORD; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse. 1 Chronicles 10:13-14.

The spirit that Saul talked to was not Samuel at all but an evil spirit, possibly Satan. Even the story itself does not make sense if we think it was Samuel. Look at the following four points:

  1. Samuel was supposedly "brought up." Other expressions used in this passage include: "ascending out of the earth," "coming up," and "bring . . up." (verses 13-15). Is this where the righteous dead are, down in the earth? Not according to those who believe in the immortal soul. They think they would be in heaven.
  2. Samuel is described as an old man covered with a mantle. Is this the way immortal souls appear? Are they old or are they made new?
  3. Where did the soul get the body? They're supposed to be disembodied. Was there a resurrection? Did God obey the call of the witch and raise up Samuel? If she did not then can Satan raise the dead?
  4. The apparition of Samuel told Saul, "Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me." (1 Samuel 28:19) Saul committed suicide on the battlefield the next day. Where did Samuel dwell? Do the wicked and righteous dead dwell together in the same place?

Samuel must not have been brought up!

It should also be clear that the Bible never says that Saul saw the real Samuel. He received his information secondhand from the witch, and only concluded that it was Samuel. The truth is that the devil deceived both the witch and Saul. It was nothing more than a devil-generated seance. It is no wonder that God has killed those who have done this wicked act in the past.

Conclusions

Why is it important to know that the dead sleep?

It should be clear that we sleep in the ground after we die. There is no consciousness at all. There is no soul that goes to heaven. Instead, we wait until Jesus comes again to take us up with Him.

  1. Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulcher is with us unto this day.
  1. For David is not ascended into the heavens: but he saith himself, The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand,
  2. Until I make thy foes thy footstool. Acts 2:29,34-35.

Even David, Whom God says: "is a man after My own heart", is not in heaven. He is in the grave. We do have an indication here in Acts that David will be saved, for he was told to wait a little while till God makes our foes our footstool. So the dead will wait until this trouble and strife in this world is past. Only then will Jesus raise His people from the dead.

Many people believe that we live as spirits, ghosts, or angels after we die. It may seem to be a harmless error; However, this misunderstanding can lead to a very dangerous situation.

If people who die are actually in the grave not knowing anything as the Bible describes, then who is it that people see and talk to when they are faced with some dead relative coming back to warn them of some danger or supposedly to comfort?

I have a friend who has a lot of strange things happen in their home. He says he talks to his dead grandmother. She appears in the sky to him and talks to him. Also, sometimes, the telephone will ring and when one of the boys pick it up, its their dead uncle on the phone, and they recognize his voice!

Since dead people cannot visit people, some other impostor must be masquerading as some dead relative or friend. Who could it be?

I believe that Satan and his evil angels are doing these things, and they can affect certain people because they believe that we continue to think and do things even after we die. They do not know that people simply go to sleep when they die, so they don't realize that they are really talking to demons.

In the future, Satan will use this ignorance of what the Bible says to attack people. If people don't realize that dead people can't think or do anything, then they are gullible. They are left wide open to any evil suggestion that the demons might want to tell them. Thus demons will come and tell these people lies and because of what they believe to be true, they will also believe these lying demons.

I believe this is an extremely important subject, because our ignorance of it allows Satan to tell people lies about all sorts of things. And the people are not even alerted to the possibility that it may be an evil spirit that they are talking to. Satan only wants to destroy us and this ignorance puts unsuspecting people right in his hands!

Satan and his evil angels are the obvious answer as to why a lot of mysterious things happen these days. We already know that they want to deceive the whole world. To learn more of their purpose against us, click on Activities of our Ancestors. This link takes a look at different phenomena occurring today which are demonic in nature. What better way to deceive than to have it come from a dead "friend", or even a UFO?

Another interesting link looks at how Satan has attacked God and His people throughout the history of our world. How is he trying to win his war against God?

It is the work of Satan to deceive and destroy us. What better way then to give people false information about Heaven, maybe they will say that we don't need to worry about being "good" because everyone is going to heaven.

While it is true that salvation is a gift to anyone who believes, we must realize that the Bible is very clear what true belief does to our life habits and goals. Look at some of the following Bible text.

  1. "Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
  2. "And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him." Acts 5:31-32 NKJV.
  1. "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent.
  2. "Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.
  3. "To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. Revelation 3:19-21 NKJV.

Yes God can and does forgive our sins, but only to those who obey God! Jesus loves us so much that He rebukes and chastens us so that we might repent from our sins. It is to the one who overcomes these sins that God will save. For more information on how we are saved, click on the second coming of Jesus Christ, then go to the conclusions of that page.

Remember, the Lord truly loves us to the extent that He wants us to live with Him. This is not wishful thinking. He even now is working on our behalf to save us from sin. He is now preparing to take us home with Him. So let's plan to be among the saved. This will be the biggest homecoming that we will ever experience. I am sure that the whole universe of created beings are also looking forward to this event. We must not miss our chance to witness and feel the happiness of those who love the Lord by living with Him!


Difficult Bible Passages About Death Explained.

 

The First Question:

I just had a friend pass away today and found your website online. I found it very interesting, because I never have delved that deeply into finding out why people die and so on...

I read that when you die you lose all memories... I am just wondering if you get all of your memories back when you are brought back to life in the very end? Are your memories just for having on earth?

And if so, what is the point of having memories of people that you love if you are just going to forget them? I am confused and was hoping you could help me out. You have a great page. Thanks

 

I agree with you. If we lost our memories, what would be the point of seeing your old friends again if you didn't even know who they are!

Yes! We get back all of our memories. Remember, Jesus called death a sleep. Then when Jesus comes, He wakes us up again. We don't lose our memories every time we go to sleep and that is the connotation that Jesus gives us. If death is pictured as just sleeping, then the idea is that when He wakes us up, it will be as if we are just waking up from a sleep. We will have our memories again.

  1. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
  2. 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.
  3. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
  4. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, death is swallowed up in victory.
  5. O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
  6. The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
  7. But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57.

Can you imagine what it will be like to wake up from being dead and seeing Jesus. You will be shouting victory yourself because you knew, before you died, that being dead is a very big thing to us. So, when you actually wake up from death, and you realize that you will never have to face death again, Believe me, you will probably be shouting. The whole scene demands that those who wake up will still have their memories. You will realize that you were just dead and that now you are alive. Otherwise you might not even know what death is!

Here is an important point! When it says that we lose our memories, what it means is that we don't know what is happening when we are actually dead. When we are asleep in death, our memory is lost because there is no working brain at that point. Both the body and brain are decayed and are no longer functional! But, when Jesus raises us up, we will have new bodies with brains that are able to think again. We will also be given our original memories back.

I don't know how God will do it, but He has made promises to us that only He can fulfill.

 

The Second Question:

Didn't Jesus tell the thief "Today you will be with me in paradise?"

 

Lets look at that verse in the Bible:

  1. And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
  2. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise. Luke 23:42-43.

From the way it reads in the Bible is appears that Jesus did promise to the thief that he would go to paradise that day. However if that is true, we are faced with three problems.

  1. The thief did not ask to go that day. He had his theology straight, and asked to be remembered when Jesus comes in His kingdom.
  2. Jesus did not go that day. Three days later, after Jesus rose from the dead, He told Mary not to touch Him, for He had not ascended to the Father. Actually, the New King James version says it better: Jesus said to her, "Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, 'I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.'" John 20:17. So Jesus never went to Heaven when He was dead. He plainly said to Mary that He had not yet seen the Father. Notice also that Jesus says He is ascending to His Father. Jesus did not say that He had just come back from Heaven nor did He say that He had ascended already (past tense). It should be clear that Jesus never went anywhere. He was in the grave sleeping the sleep of the dead.
  3. The thief could not have gone that day because he did not die that day! John 19:30-34 tells how the thieves legs were broken as the Sabbath began. This was because the Jews did not want crosses up on the Sabbath, so they would take them down and break the legs of those on the cross to hasten death and prevent escape. The thieves lived on after Jesus died. So, The thief could not be with Jesus in paradise on that day because the thief did not die that day.

So what is the answer? How can we have this text agree with all the other texts? The answer is simple. Greek text does not have punctuation. When the Bible was translated, the scholars put in the punctuation that they felt was correct, where it allowed the text to agree with their own interpretation. As we can see, this placing of the comma makes the text disagree with the rest of Scriptures. The scholars simply misplaced a comma which changes the entire meaning of the verse. They put the comma before the word today instead of after the word today.

If we change the punctuation so that it agrees with all the other Bible verses, it would read: "Verily I say unto thee today, thou shalt be with me in paradise." Jesus was emphasizing the fact that He was saying it now, today. In spite of the fact that the situation seems hopeless, after all, they were being killed in the worst possible way. Yet, in spite of the fact that Jesus seemed powerless to do anything for anybody; He told the thief, truly, I say to you today, you will be with Me in Paradise.

 

The Third Question:

I always believed that the soul was immortal. If we don't have a soul and the body goes back to earth when we die; How does God put us back together when we are totally disintegrated?

 

I am not sure how God puts us back together. What is it that God gave us when we were given the breath of life? Do we really know what goes back to God when we die? God must have something of us so He can put us back together again with completely new immortal bodies that will never grow old. The Bible obviously does not go into specifics because we probably would not be able to understand anyway. We are only given simple concepts.

What ever it is that goes back to God, it obviously is not consciousness. It is not a disembodied soul; Because, we are told that the dead do not know anything. We are told that our thoughts perish.

  1. 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.
  2. 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. Ecclesiastes 9:5-6.

From the Bible, what we have is this. When we are alive we do have a soul.

  1. 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. Genesis 2:7.

Man becomes a living soul when the dust of the ground and the breath of life comes together. When we die, the soul no longer exists because the dust returns to the earth and the spirit or breath returns to God.

  1. Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. Ecclesiastes 12:7.

And when that happens all thoughts stop. The dead do not know anything.

  1. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Psalms 146:4.
  1. All the while my breath is in me, and the spirit of God is in my nostrils;
  2. My lips shall not speak wickedness, nor my tongue utter deceit. Job 27:3-4

The righteous receive immortality as a gift from our Lord at His Second Coming. So when Jesus comes to take us home with him, those who are still alive will be changed, and those who have fallen asleep in death, Jesus will raise them up in new bodies. Their bodies will be immortal. So at that point, the righteous will have an immortal soul.

  1. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,
  2. who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. Philippians 3:20-21
  1. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--
  2. in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
  3. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
  4. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
  5. "O Death, where is your sting? O Hades, where is your victory?"
  6. The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin is the law.
  7. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:51-57.

The Bible is very clear about this issue of the soul. The word "soul" is found around 1600 times and never once uses the expression "immortal soul" The word mortal means subject to death. The word immortal means not subject to death.

In the Bible we see that the soul who sins shall die:

  1. Behold, all souls are Mine; The soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is Mine; The soul who sins shall die." Ezekiel 18:4
  1. He who keeps the commandment keeps his soul, But he who is careless of his ways will die. Proverbs 19:16
  1. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.
  2. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?
  3. For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. Matthew 16:25-27

Its interesting the way it is said: "The soul who sins shall die". The word "soul" could be replaced by the word "person" The person who sins shall die. it means the same thing.

Jesus said that both the body and the soul could be destroyed in hell.

  1. 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. Matthew 10:28

God can destroy both soul and body. However man can only kill the body. That certain something, the soul, the actual person, can still be put together by God when only the body is destroyed.

However, Immortality is an attribute of Divinity. Only God is naturally immortal:

  1. which He will manifest in His own time, He who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings and Lord of lords,
  2. who alone has immortality, dwelling in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see, to whom be honor and everlasting power. 1 Timothy 6:15-16

Satan's first lie in the Garden of Eden was about death. He stated that the effect of disobedience was not death but life. He said, "you shall not surely die"

  1. Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die." Genesis 3:4.

God's word says, "the wages of sin is death"

  1. For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23.

Death is the absence of life. Sin brings forth not eternal life in hell, but total, absolute, banishment from the presence of God by annihilation. The Bible is clear. Man is mortal (Job 4:17) and we seek for immortality

  1. eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; Romans 2:7.

The righteous receive immortality as a gift from our Lord at His Second Coming (1 Corinthians 15:51-54). Sinners receive their eternal reward as well. "Sin when it is finished, bringeth forth death (James. 1:15). The choice then is between eternal life and eternal death.

  1. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16

For more information on how the wicked will perish, click on: Will Hell Fire last forever? Will people really moan and groan forever in agony and pain?

 

The Fourth Question:

What does Paul mean by in the body or out of the body in 2 Corinthians 12:2-3?

 

Let's read the text and a few other verses:

  1. It is doubtless not profitable for me to boast. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord:
  2. I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago--whether in the body I do not know, or whether out of the body I do not know, God knows--such a one was caught up to the third heaven.
  3. And I know such a man--whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows--
  4. how he was caught up into Paradise and heard inexpressible words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
  5. Of such a one I will boast; yet of myself I will not boast, except in my infirmities.
  6. For though I might desire to boast, I will not be a fool; for I will speak the truth. But I refrain, lest anyone should think of me above what he sees me to be or hears from me.
  7. And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. 2 Corinthians 12:1-7

This text is usually used to prove the doctrine of an immortal soul. However it does not talk about that at all. Most commentators concede that Paul was describing his own experience, because he spoke in context of his own revelations or dreams.

Paul was concerned that no one should think he was glorying or boasting about his visions. For this reason, he ascribed the experience to a man he knew.

Paul's soul did not leave his body, in spite of claims to the contrary. He was not puzzled over whether he had died or not. He was merely uncertain as to whether he dreamt it or if he went there in person, in real life.

Although it seemed that he was bodily taken to heaven, yet he felt it possible that he was taken there only in a dream or vision. He confessed to complete ignorance as to what actually happened.

The physical impressions seemed as though he were "out of the body," in a way of speaking. In the same way, Paul wrote to the Colossian church, "For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit." Colossians 2:5. No one interprets this to mean that some immortal soul left Paul's body to be with his friends. He was only saying he was thinking of them.

 

The Fifth Question:

Doesn't Paul teach "to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord?"

 

In the text below, we can see that in the first four verses, Paul is contrasting the mortal state that we find ourselves in with immortal life in heaven.

  1. Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.
  2. Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling,
  3. because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked.
  4. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.
  5. Now it is God who has made us for this very purpose and has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
  6. Therefore we are always confident and know that as long as we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord.
  7. We live by faith, not by sight.
  8. We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord.
  9. So we make it our goal to please him, whether we are at home in the body or away from it.
  10. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due to him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.
  11. Since, then, we know what it is to fear the Lord, we try to persuade men. What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. 2 Corinthians 5:1-11 NIV

Clearly, in verse 3, to be naked or unclothed is death. It is not being mortal nor immortal because Paul clearly describes two sets of clothes. The first is mortality, the earthly tent that we groan in while we long to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands, which is immortality.

In Verse 5 Paul says that we were made for the very purpose of having immortality and we have been given the Holy Spirit as a guarantee of what is to come.

In verse 6 and 7 we are told that we live by faith, not by sight because we are in this mortal body and we cannot see God directly. This is what we all experience.

Verse 8 and 9 is what gives problems. What does Paul mean by saying we would be prefer to be away from the body and be at home with the Lord? Having no body does not match any of the three conditions described in verses 1-4 (1. mortality-the earthly tent, 2. death-being naked, 3. immortality-clothed with our heavenly dwelling).

This could be a reference to visions and dreams as Paul does in 2 Corinthians 12:2-4. He would rather be with God in vision rather than be in his mortal body on earth. See the discussion above.

In the first letter to the Corinthians, Paul had already told them WHEN we would all receive immortality,

  1. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,
  2. 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.
  3. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
  4. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. 1 Corinthians 15:51-54.

Paul also wrote in his closing testimony:

  1. For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
  2. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
  3. Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. 2 Timothy 4:6-8.

It should be clear that Paul believed he would be with the Lord when Jesus appears again.

 

The Sixth Question:

What about the rich man and Lazarus?

 

All through the Bible, it talks about death as a sleep. Jesus Himself, when He heard of Lazarus's death, mentioned that he fell asleep.

  1. These things He said, and after that He said to them, "Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up."
  2. Then His disciples said, "Lord, if he sleeps he will get well."
  3. However, Jesus spoke of his death, but they thought that He was speaking about taking rest in sleep.
  4. Then Jesus said to them plainly, "Lazarus is dead". John 11:11-14. NIV

So it should be clear that Jesus knew that dead people are as if they were asleep. Also since the whole Bible, over and over, refers to the dead as sleeping (over 60 times); If we took the Rich Man and Lazarus story of Luke 16:19-31 literally, It would go against all the rest of the Bible. We would be making one part of the Bible go against all the other parts of scripture. It doesn't make sense that Jesus would say one day that the dead sleep, and in another time, He says they think and do things. Since the Rich man and lazarus story seems to go against the rest of the Bible, it would seem that there is something wrong with our interpretation of the story.

There is another point that the story does not fit with the rest of the Bible (if we take a literal point of view of the story). At the second coming of Jesus, He will sound the trumpet, and all the dead will rise.

  1. According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.
  2. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
  3. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord for ever.
  4. Therefore encourage each other with these words. 1 Thessalonians 4:15-18

If the righteous dead are already alive and doing things, why does Jesus have to wake them up when He comes the second time? They would already be awake.

Lets look at the Rich Man and Lazarus story itself.

  1. There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day.
  2. But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate,
  3. desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
  4. So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham's bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.
  5. And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
  6. Then 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.'
  7. But Abraham said, 'Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented.
  8. And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.'
  9. Then he said, 'I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house,
  10. for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.'
  11. Abraham said to him, 'They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.'
  12. And he said, 'No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.'
  13. But he said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.' Luke 16:19-31.

The story that Jesus gave about the rich man and Lazarus is either a literally description or it is just a story or a parable.

Here are 4 reasons why it could not possibly be literalistic:

  1. The beggar died and was taken by the angels to Abraham's bosom. No one believes that Abraham's literal bosom is the abode of the righteous dead. It is a figurative or parabolic expression. By the way, the angels will gather the saints, but according to Matthew 24:31, this will take place at the coming of Jesus, not at a person's death.
    1. Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.
    2. And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. Matthew 24:30-31.
  2. Heaven and hell were separated by a gulf, and yet the persons in each could converse with each other. There are probably few individuals in the world who believe that this will be literally true of the saved and the lost (Luke 16:26).
  3. The rich man was in hell with a body. He had eyes, a tongue, etc. (Luke 16:24). How did his body get into hellfire instead of into the grave? I know of no one who teaches that the bodies of the wicked go into hell as soon as they die. This story could not be literal.
  4. The request for Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and come through the flames to cool the rich man's tongue is obviously not literal. How much moisture would be left and how much relief would it give? The whole story is unrealistic and parabolic.

Jesus told this story to make a point. That even if people came back from the dead, it would not convince anyone! (Luke 16:31) Sure enough, when the real Lazarus was raised from the dead, they still did not believe. The Jews only wanted to kill him to hide the evidence.

What is it like to be Dead?

So, what is it like to be dead? and, why doesn't God raise his people up when they die. Some time ago, I answered a girl's question concerning her brother who died quite suddenly. She could not think of her brother not doing anything at the present time.

I told her that when her brother died in the accident, everything went black. He lost consciousness. The very next second, as far as he knows, he will wake up to see the second coming of Jesus who is coming to get every one of us.

He will be very amazed to know how long he was asleep. It doesn't matter to him because he didn't experience any time. Its as if it never happened. When we experience the sleep of death, time doesn't matter.

Monty, a friend of mine told me this story. He is a native american.

He said that when he was small, their family use to go to their grandparents farm. They would have fun playing with the animals and experiencing all the sights and sounds of a farm. Late in the evening, they would start for home in their car, but the kids would get sleepy on the long drive and soon would be fast asleep in the back of the station wagon.

When they arrived home, their parents would pick up the sleeping children and put them to bed. The next morning the kids would wake up and be surprised that they were in their own bedroom. The last thing they remember is that they were in the car. How did they get in here?

When we die, it is just like what the kids experience when they get really tired. There is no sense of any time.

I also answered another person's question about what the sleep of death is like. She said that some nights seemed like she was asleep for years but other nights would go very quickly. She was worried that if she was dead for 10,000 years that it might be a fearfully long time to her.

But I told her that the answer is actually very simple. When we sleep, we don't stop thinking. We start dreaming. Our mind is reorganizing all the information we had lived the day before. Some nights are bad and it feels like the night took forever to get through. Probably we didn't sleep real well, and the dreams were more like work or something. Or maybe we are sick and our sleep is pure misery. Those are the longest of nights. But other nights, it seems as if it was short. When I was young, I especially remember having those nights where it seemed like it was an instant in time. I wondered where the night went.

  1. His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish. Psalms 146:4.
  1. For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing Ecclesiastes 9:5 (part)

But it will be different when we die. We will not dream or anything because our thoughts will perish. We will not toss and turn in agony or wonder about when this death thing is going to end. No! that will not happen. The Bible is very clear. The moment we die, our thoughts perish and we no longer know anything! It is because of this that we can know that our death will be as an instant in time. The first thing we will know is that we are awake and Jesus is coming!

So our experience will not be any different than Adam and Eve. When they wake up on that day, they will have no awareness of any time at all. It will be instantaneous. And their experience of death will not be any different than our experience, if and when we die.

We will be like those kids who wore themselves out on the farm and fell asleep in the back of the station wagon. They were dead to the world and the next thing they knew, they were in their own bedroom. That is what death will be like.

An Issue Concerning our Happiness

Now, there is another issue concerning our happiness. If we have a brother or sister, mother or father, and they were alive in heaven right now and was able to see you and your family and see how you are suffering right now, would they be happy. They would be able to see your condition, but not be able to help you like they did before.

It reminds me of people who are tortured by seeing their children or wives tortured. I think God knew what He was doing when He chose to do what He did. He loves us very much and is planning to take us to live with Him as family!

When we die, there is no concept of time. So the very next thing we see is when we wake up to see Jesus.

  1. Thy dead men shall live, together with my dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead.
  2. Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.
  3. For, behold, the LORD cometh out of his place to punish the inhabitants of the earth for their iniquity: the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her slain. Isaiah 26:19-21

In this text, Isaiah specifically says that God's people will enter into the chambers of the grave until the indignation is past, until the misery, war, sickness, and sadness is finished and done away with. It is clear that this is an act of kindness. God let's His people rest until all this trouble is past. It is then that God comes out of His place to punish the wicked, It is also then that the righteous will be raised up from the dead.

  1. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
  2. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord for ever. 1 Thessalonians 4:16-17

When Jesus comes back to take His people with Him, it is then that the righteous dead be raised up to be alive once again.

Now, what happens to the wicked dead. They sleep just like the righteous, except they will rise up in a different resurrection.

  1. Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice,
  2. And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. John 5:26-29.

The righteous dead are raised to life when Jesus comes. the wicked dead will be raised up 1000 years later in the resurrection of the dead for judgement.

See the page on Hell (does it last forever). Also, for additional information on the wicked dead Click to see: Are the wicked tormented day and night for ever and ever?

 

The Seventh Question:

If we are all sleeping until Jesus comes back then why was Saul able to speak to Samuel after he died (1 Samuel 28)? Also why do you see the spirits of Elijah and Moses with Jesus on the mountain (Matthew 17)? If we as humans just sleep until Jesus' second coming than how were these people in a spirit form?

 

You should realize that the spirit that looked and sounded like Samuel, was not Samuel at all. But it was probably Satan.

Look what is said about Manasseh:

  1. And he did evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel. 2 Kings 21:2

After a full list of the evil things he did, the following is included:

  1. Also he made his son pass through the fire, practiced soothsaying, used witchcraft, and consulted spiritists and mediums. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger. 2 Kings 21:6

In the Bible, the act of going to a medium or wizard was considered an extremely evil thing to do. What it is, you are actually going to the enemy! It is Satan and/or his evil angels or demons that you are getting information from. It is no wonder that God calls it an abomination. All throughout the Bible, it is condemned. Look at the following scripture:

  1. 'Give no regard to mediums and familiar spirits; do not seek after them, to be defiled by them: I am the LORD your God. Leviticus 19:31
  1. 'And the person who turns to mediums and familiar spirits, to prostitute himself with them, I will set My face against that person and cut him off from his people. Leviticus 20:6
  1. 'A man or a woman who is a medium, or who has familiar spirits, shall surely be put to death; they shall stone them with stones. Their blood shall be upon them.'" Leviticus 20:27
  1. "There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, or one who practices witchcraft, or a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer,
  2. "or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.
  3. "For all who do these things are an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you. Deuteronomy 18:10-12
  1. "You shall not permit a sorceress to live. Exodus 22:18

In the New Testament we see that an evil spirit came out of the person who did fortune-telling:

  1. Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling.
  2. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, "These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation."
  3. And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her." And he came out that very hour. Acts 16:16-18

So we see that if anyone goes to a medium they are cut off from their people, and the medium is killed outright. These things are a work of Satan not God. It should not surprise us that an evil spirit came out of the slave girl. What she was doing was a work of Satan.

Now lets look at the story itself. in 1 Samuel 28: 3 we see that in the past, Saul himself had killed all the mediums: And Saul had put the mediums and the spiritists out of the land.

We also see that Saul has now done so many things against God that God will no longer talk to him: And when Saul inquired of the LORD, the LORD did not answer him, either by dreams or by Urim or by the prophets. 1 Samuel 28:6

So Saul went to a medium instead of going to God. We find in 1 Chronicles that one of the reasons why God killed Saul is that he went to a medium for guidance. He actually went to Satan for help!

  1. So Saul died for his unfaithfulness which he had committed against the LORD, because he did not keep the word of the LORD, and also because he consulted a medium for guidance.
  2. But he did not inquire of the LORD; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse. 1 Chronicles 10:13-14.

The spirit that Saul talked to was not Samuel at all but an evil spirit, possibly Satan. Even the story itself does not make sense if we think it was Samuel. Look at the following four points:

  1. Samuel was supposedly "brought up." Other expressions used in this passage include: "ascending out of the earth," "coming up," and "bring . . up." (verses 13-15). Is this where the righteous dead are, down in the earth? Not according to those who believe in the immortal soul. They think they would be in heaven.
  2. Samuel is described as an old man covered with a mantle. Is this the way immortal souls appear? Are they old or are they made new?
  3. Where did the soul get the body? They're supposed to be disembodied. Was there a resurrection? Did God obey the call of the witch and raise up Samuel? If she did not then can Satan raise the dead?
  4. The apparition of Samuel told Saul, "Tomorrow you and your sons will be with me." (1 Samuel 28:19) Saul committed suicide on the battlefield the next day. Where did Samuel dwell? Do the wicked and righteous dead dwell together in the same place?

Samuel must not have been brought up!

It should also be clear that the Bible never says that Saul saw the real Samuel. He received his information secondhand from the witch, and only concluded that it was Samuel. The truth is that the devil deceived both the witch and Saul. It was nothing more than a devil-generated seance. It is no wonder that God has killed those who have done this wicked act in the past.

Now, who was it that talked to Jesus:

  1. Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves;
  2. and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light.
  3. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. Matthew 17:1-3.

How could Jesus talk to people who are dead if they are asleep? As it turns out, the Bible tells us that Moses and Elijah are not dead! They do not need to be in a spirit form since they are alive with a body.

There are certain people who God took to Heaven in a special way. These people never experienced death at all. Look at the following verses showing the family history of Adam:

  1. So all the days that Adam lived were nine hundred and thirty years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Seth were nine hundred and twelve years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Enosh were nine hundred and five years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Cainan were nine hundred and ten years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Mahalalel were eight hundred and ninety-five years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Jared were nine hundred and sixty-two years; and he died.
  1. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years.
  2. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Genesis 5:5, 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23-24

All the other people died at the end of their lives, However, for Enoch, it was different. Only after 365 years God took Enoch home with Him to heaven. Rather than seeing death and being put in a grave like most people, Enoch was translated to Heaven. He did not die! Look what is said about Enoch in Hebrews:

  1. By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, "and was not found, because God had taken him"; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. Hebrews 11:5.

The same thing happened to Elijah, he was also translated to Heaven, with out seeing death.

  1. Then it happened, as they continued on and talked, that suddenly a chariot of fire appeared with horses of fire, and separated the two of them; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven.
  2. And Elisha saw it, and he cried out, "My father, my father, the chariot of Israel and its horsemen!" So he saw him no more. And he took hold of his own clothes and tore them into two pieces. 2 Kings 2:11-12.

So Elijah is alive in Heaven, he never died, rather he was translated. So he is not sleeping like most people do when they die.

Now, what about Moses? It is true that Moses died. He died on Mount Nebo, God buried Moses Himself:

  1. So Moses the servant of the LORD died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the LORD.
  2. And He buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, opposite Beth Peor; but no one knows his grave to this day. Deuteronomy 34: 5-6.

However, Moses was brought to life in a special resurrection. It is described in Jude 9.

  1. Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!" Jude 9.

Some have questioned if this experience really established the resurrection of Moses. But why else would the angel of the resurrection be by the graveside disputing over a body? Look at the following verse in 1 Thessalonians:

  1. 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. 1 Thessalonians 4:16

Clearly the archangel was by Moses' grave for only one purpose, to raise him to life despite Satan's efforts to prevent it.

So, Saul did not talk to Samuel at all. He talked to some evil spirit, most likely Satan Himself. On the other hand, Jesus, when He was Transfigured on the mount, He actually talked to Moses and Elijah. They were not dead, one was translated without seeing death and the other experienced a special resurrection. So both Moses and Elijah are alive!

Both of these stories agree with the rest of the Bible which says that the dead are sleeping until Jesus comes to wake them up.

 

The Eighth Question:

My son had a best friend who was a really good person but had a car accident last week and died. At the time of his death he had been drinking. I know we are not suppose to judge but do you think there is any way that he could possibly of made heaven. This is a question that has bothered me ever since I found out of the death. Does God judge our hearts or our actions or both. The boy was 22 and I remember at 22 I was not a good judge of what I should be doing... but does God take all of this into consideration,

Just how does God judge who enters heaven and who doesn't..... With all the people in the world how many will make heaven and how many will not.... I know our works will not get us into heaven just whether we believe or not but if we believe won't our works show it.

The question of this young man's fate is really bothering me...

 

You ask a very hard question. One that only God can answer. I believe as you do that our actions (works) will show if we believe or not. Also, I am reminded of the wide and narrow path:

  1. "Enter in by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter in by it.
  2. How narrow is the gate, and restricted is the way that leads to life! Few are those who find it. Matthew 7:13-14 WEB.

We are shown that most of the people of the world will actually choose the wide road and not the narrow road. Most will choose Satan and death.

However, we must remember the love of God. There are just a lot of people who see God as an angry judge who is looking for ways to destroy us by noting our sins. But it is really Satan who is trying to destroy us and not God.

We can look to the Bible to see what God is really like. It is amazing to me that Jesus found more faith outside the Jewish people then in. A roman centurion came and pleaded for his servant's life. He did not even want Jesus to come to his house but to just say the word and he knew that it would be done.

  1. When Jesus heard it, he marveled, and said to those who followed, "Most certainly I tell you, I haven't found so great a faith, not even in Israel.
  2. I tell you that many will come from the east and the west, and will sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the Kingdom of Heaven
  3. but the children of the Kingdom will be thrown out into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." Matthew 8:10-12 WEB Bible

The following text shows me that God overlooks sins done in total ignorance.

  1. The times of ignorance therefore God overlooked. But now he commands that all people everywhere should repent, Acts 17:30 WEB

There is a text in the Old Testament that says that God judges according to where people come from. He judges according to their back ground. I find that God expects more of Jews and Christians when they choose to disobey because they know so much more than other people.

When Jesus spoke to the woman of Samaria, He spoke of the fact that they were worshiping one who they did not know.

  1. The woman said to him, "Sir, I perceive that you are a prophet.
  2. Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you Jews say that in Jerusalem is the place where people ought to worship."
  3. Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe me, the hour comes, when neither in this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, will you worship the Father
  4. You worship that which you don't know. We worship that which we know; for salvation is from the Jews.
  5. But the hour comes, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such to be his worshippers. John 4:19-23 WEB Bible

I think we need to remember that both God and Jesus want to save us! One of the most famous verses in the Bible says this very thing! John 3:16.

  1. As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,
  2. that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
  3. For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.
  4. For God didn't send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through him. John 3:14-17 WEB, (begotten) KJV

God has even allowed His own special Son to come to this world and die for us. We really do not understand the sacrifice that God Himself made in giving us His son.

  1. For the eyes of the LORD run back and forth throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. 2 Chronicles 16:9 (first part) WEB, (the LORD) KJV

The sacrifice was great but God did not back down. Rather, He is looking over the whole face of the earth for people who will listen to Him. His love is unending for us.

When Jesus was being confronted by the leaders (pharisees and saducies) Jesus had to call them snakes and vipers because they were only lusting for power etc. and the things of Heaven have been lost to them.

But Jesus cried over them:

  1. "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, who kills the prophets, and stones those who are sent to her! How often I would have gathered your children together, even as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you would not!
  2. Behold, your house is left to you desolate. Matthew 23:37-38 WEB Bible

Jesus is literally crying over Jerusalem, longing to help them, but they were not willing to accept His help. Jesus is not looking for any excuse to destroy us at all. he is crying over us, that we may follow Him and be saved! The one thing that God longs for in us, the one thing that the Lord really takes pleasure in; It is when we choose to live forever and to follow God.

  1. The LORD takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his loving kindness. Psalms 147:11 WEB, "The LORD" KJV

If there is any way that Jesus can find a way to enter our hearts, He will! God is doing everything He can to save every one of us.

Finally, there is yet another verse that I am trying to find for you. I have used it before in a letter but now I can not find it. I wish I was more organized! Essentially, the verse says that God considers the place or the country where they come from in judging them. I don't have the words right because I can't find it. I did find this one:

  1. The LORD will count, when he writes up the peoples, "This one was born there." Psalms 87:6. WEB, "The Lord" KJV

There is a better one, this is not it. The people of the world, who did not have the benefit of the truth that the Jews had, were not lost. They were judged according to what they knew.

We must remember that God does not think as we think. We tend to think in absolutes. We think in terms of: "We have sinned".

How can God save us? I think that God judges the direction of our life. Are we coming toward Him or are we moving away from Him? Has the boy thought about God? Did he decide for God, only to stumble? These are questions we probably cannot answer ourselves.

Also there is another text that I am trying to find for you. I think that Paul says it. It basically says that there are some people who have followed God but they did not know it. In other words, they served God in ignorance. The Holy Spirit has spoken in their hearts and they have followed that voice. But they really don't know who they are following.

We often think of our country as being a Christian nation. However, in many cases, people just don't know what God is really like and they don't really know how to get that information either. God notices all this. He notices the confusion in our lives and even our age.

I am sorry that I really can't answer your question about your son's friend. However, I do know that if there is a way that God can save him He surely will!


Here is another way to look at things. There are so many things in this world that are unfair. Sure enough, survival of the fittest does seem to reign supreme on this earth. Existence on this earth is sometimes pure survival. Some people try to get ahead in this world and they don't seem to have a chance. Certainly, not knowing who Jesus is, seems like really bad luck! But things are not always the way them seem. Look at the next story and see what you think.

A week ago, or so, I read the story on the judgment on the house of Jeroboam, which is found in I Kings 14. Jeroboam, the king of Israel, was a wicked king and he had a son.

What happened is that the son of Jeroboam became sick. Jeroboam told his wife to disguise herself and go to Ahijah the prophet to ask him what will become of his son. There were other elements to the disguise, but of course, God told His prophet what was happening. When she came, he said: come in wife of Jeroboam, why do you pretend to be another person? Well, the prophet told her that because king Jeroboam, whom God had placed over Israel, did not follow God but acted wickedly, this king was extremely wicked; that disaster will strike his family. Every male member will see death.

Now the point that I want to make is this: This son who became sick, that originally caused Jeroboam's wife to see the prophet, was the only thing in Jeroboam's family that was good. So because this son was good, he was going to be the only one who would die a natural death. All the other members were going to have violent deaths.

This is what is said in 1 Kings 14:12-13.

  1. Arise therefore, go to your own house. When your feet enter the city, the child shall die.
  2. And all Israel shall mourn for him and bury him, for he is the only one of Jeroboam who shall come to the grave, because in him there is found something good toward the LORD God of Israel in the house of Jeroboam.

Here is a story that, on the outside, seems to indicate that this son had no chance at all. He had the wrong father, and so he had to die because all members of his family were to be killed. However, I believe that God will save that son when Jesus comes in the clouds of heaven to take back His people to be with Him. Apparently, that son had decided to follow God. He had that freedom of choice, and God is going to reward that choice when Jesus comes again.

So here is a story of a son who had the wrong father. It looks like he had the worst of luck and that he would never have a chance of doing anything ever again. However, if we look at this story from a different perspective, we find that it is the opposite of our original view of the story. That boy was allowed to die only after he had chosen to follow God. He had already exercised his free will to choose God. Now, the next moment that he will be aware of, when Jesus comes to collect His righteous people and take them to heaven, this boy will be among them. He has exercised his free will and God will reward that choice!

There are also places in the Bible where it says that God will cause some righteous people to have short lives. Now that can be seen as a bad thing, because nobody really wants to die. However, this is actually a good thing.

The first two verses are scripture examples showing that when the righteous die, God is being merciful to them, separating them from the evil of this world. They will be brought up again when all the evil is past.
  1. Help, LORD, for the godly man ceases For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men. Psalm 12:1
  1. The righteous perishes, And no man takes it to heart; Merciful men are taken away, While no one considers That the righteous is taken away from evil.
  2. He shall enter into peace; They shall rest in their beds, Each one walking in his uprightness. Isaiah 57:1-2

God wants to preserve His people from destruction. Sometimes the only way to do that is to have them die sooner than later. After all, the very next thing that the righteous people will see when they die is Jesus, when He comes to take all His people home with Him.

Life on this world is very short, usually under a hundred years. However, once this war is over between Jesus and Satan, all those who have chosen God will no longer be tempted and attacked by Satan, and they will be able to explore the whole universe for googles of years, and that is only the beginning ( 1 google is 1 x 10100 or 1 with a hundred zeros after it.)

Now, what happens to those who become discouraged? I remember that John the Baptist was discouraged and later he lost his head (he was killed). But I believe that He will be saved in spite of his discouragement.

Here is a verse showing that God treats a good man or a righteous man differently from the wicked when they fall. If a wicked man who is a evildoer, falls; God will cut them off. They will be no more. But we know that the meek will inherit the earth. If a good man falls for some reason, God will hold them up! He will not utterly cast them down!

  1. The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD, And He delights in his way.
  2. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; For the LORD upholds him with His hand. Psalm 37:23-24

I believe, that in spite of what looks like to us today as being totally unfair, I see that in the end, in spite of the fact that things are not fair today, that God will make things fair in the end. He will turn the tables. Even though Satan has caused total unfairness in this world, God will turn wrong into right judgement. He will judge fairly and with compassion to the righteous!

I also believe that there are people who have served God with all the knowledge that they had. Others might have served God totally out of ignorance. God, in the end, will turn the tables and make things fair.


why I became a scientist who is a creationist

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Mike's Origins Resources: A PhD Creationist's view of science, origins, and the future hope of the human race; by looking at Creation Science, Biblical Evidence, and Prophecy Molecular History Research Center What happens when we die? Do we go to Heaven or Hell right away when we die? What does Jesus mean by sleep?
What happens during the 1000 years following Jesus' Second Coming? What about Judgement and what does the Bible say?
Hell Fire, Does it last forever? Is Satan in charge of Hell? Do people really moan and groan forever in agony and pain?
Are the Wicked Tormented Day and Night for Ever and Ever as mentioned in Revelation? What then is the second death?


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Officially posted January 2, 2000
last revised January 15, 2014