It is no secret that many people (believers and unbelievers alike) think that when you die, your spirit or soul remains alive. Most people believe that when you die you either go to heaven or hell. The “church” believes this with confidence and this is the very heart of the Christian belief system. Believers go to heaven at death and unbelievers (and wicked humanity) go to hell at death. The truth in scripture will reveal that both of these beliefs are unscriptural. If we rely on the teachings and traditions of men, we leave no room for the truths of God to rule our hearts. Let’s start with this verse in 2 Corinthians 5:8 which is often quoted as the paramount verse that justifies the teaching of receiving the promise of eternal (aionios: age-abiding) life immediately after death.
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be ABSENT FROM THE BODY, and to be PRESENT WITH THE LORD. (King James Version)
This verse is taught that upon death, the believer’s spirit immediately goes to heaven to spend eternity with the Lord. The problem is that there are many other scriptures that contradict this teaching. There aren’t any contradictions in God’s word. However, there are contradictions in the translations (by uninspired men) that we have and in the carnal interpretations that people make. We must let scripture explain scripture through guidance by the Spirit of Christ if we are to ever understand God’s word.
1 Corinthians 2:13 Which things also we speak, NOT IN THE WORDS WHICH MAN’S WISDOM TEACHETH, but which the HOLY GHOST TEACHETH; COMPARING SPIRITUAL THINGS WITH SPIRITUAL.
The Creation of Man
Genesis 2:7 And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.
So from reading this verse alone, we see that this is the equation for man’s creation;
dust of the ground + breath of life = living soul
In Genesis 2:17, God tells man that he will SURELY DIE if he eats from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Christians disagree with God and they are actually in “agreement” with the serpent that professed to Eve, “you shall NOT surely die”.
Notice that Genesis 2:7 says “living soul” (not immortal soul) so it is implied that a soul can cease from being living. Not convinced?
Ezekiel 18:4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: THE SOUL THAT SINNETH, IT SHALL DIE.
So if a soul is immortal, how can it die? The problem with this idea is that men try to create a definition for a soul that is not consistent with what is plainly stated in the scriptures. Consider this definition for the word soul according to Merriam-Webster;
“The spiritual part of a person that is believed to give life to the body and in many religions is believed to live forever.”
This definition divides the spiritual part of a person and the body of a person as if they can exist a part from each other. Notice that this definition gives NO credit to the real source of our life which is God. If we look back at the scripture in Genesis 2:7, we clearly see that it is the combination of the dust of the ground and the breath of life that creates a living soul. When we die, we return to the dust of the earth. Let’s look at several scriptures that explain the process of death.
Psalm 104:29 Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: THOU TAKEST AWAY THEIR BREATH, THEY DIE, AND RETURN TO THEIR DUST.
Even with scriptures such as this, people still believe that the body dies but the spirit of a man continues to live on albeit without a body. They believe that this spirit or immortal soul goes to heaven or hell at death.
Luke 16:23 And IN HELL HE LIFT UP HIS EYES, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. Although this verse is a part of a parable, this verse is often quoted to justify that hell is real. Notice that is says he lift up his eyes. Eyes are a part of a human body that decomposes and returns to the dust of the earth as explained earlier.
Luke 16:24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the TIP OF HIS FINGER in water, and cool MY TONGUE; for I am tormented in this flame. So apparently in this “spirit world”, the rich man’s body-less soul (spirit) has a tongue and the body-less soul (spirit) of Lazarus has fingers.
Matthew 18:8 Wherefore if THY HAND OR THY FOOT offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having TWO HANDS OR TWO FEET TO BE CAST INTO EVERLASTING FIRE. Clearly this is a contradiction. When a person dies, they have a funeral and are buried. The person can be exhumed years later and you will still be able to see their hands and feet. This verse tells us that hands and feet get cast into this “everlasting fire” (the word everlasting is not a proper translation). Hands and feet are a part of a human body not a body-less spirit and Christ makes it clear that it is a body that gets cast into this hell (geenna) fire.
Do you not see how these scriptures present a contradiction to the common belief in the immortality of the soul? The scriptures do not support this belief in any way. Most Christians will not be able to provide you with any scriptures to justify this belief. They were taught it and they just believed it. Some will try to find a scripture to twist in order to make their carnal interpretation appear to have some truth but remember, God’s word doesn’t contradict itself.
So when a man dies, his body returns to the dust but what happens to the breath of life? Would it be too much of a stretch to say that since man returns to the dust of the earth at death, then the breath of life (spirit) returns to God? What do the scriptures say?
Ecclesiastes 12:7 Then SHALL THE DUST RETURN TO THE EARTH AS IT WAS: and THE SPIRIT SHALL RETURN UNTO GOD WHO GAVE IT.
What do we say now? Is this not clear enough for you? Is it that hard for you to believe God’s word? There are so many scriptures like these that contradict the teaching that man has an immortal soul. Let’s look at some others;
Psalm 6:5 For in DEATH there is NO REMEMBRANCE OF THEE: in the grave who shall give thee thanks?
How many times have we seen people of TV and YouTube make claims of having “near death experiences”? Come on people, let’s use our brains here for a second, – near death is not death. Death is death. There are also others who actually claim to have died and went to heaven or hell and came back to share their personal testimony with the world. I’ve actually watched some of these videos on YouTube and some of them are quite comical. It is all garbage and lies. We can choose to believe the scriptures, or believe the polluted ideas of men. So let me make myself clear on this; every single person that has ever made a claim that they died and went to heaven or hell and came back to earth to tell their story is a liar.
Here is a nice scripture for them; Revelation 21:8 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. [As amazing as some of those stories may seem, do not believe this religious junk. Men can create some of the most outlandish stuff and people are so gullible that they will believe any and everything that’s shoved in their faces. It’s time to wake up. Do not get caught up with all of this Hollywood fanciful hogwash just because it tickles your emotions.]
Psalm 146:4 His breath goeth forth, HE RETURNETH TO HIS EARTH; IN THAT VERY DAY HIS THOUGHTS PERISH.
Here is but a second witness that when your breath leaves your body, you return back to the earth. Not in some place where you are dead but also alive. How absurd… You can’t be dead and alive at the same time. When you die, you are dead, which is the opposite of life. In death, you have no thoughts, feelings, or memories. This is a complete contradiction to the teaching of hell and life after death as it is taught in the Christian church.
Ecclesiastes 9:5 For the LIVING KNOW THAT THEY SHALL DIE: but THE DEAD KNOW NOT ANY THING, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten.
The bible is clear on this subject. When you die, you don’t remember anything. It is true that some will continue to believe that man has an immortal soul although the scriptures plainly state otherwise. These are the people that love the traditions and words of men over the Word of God.
2 Timothy 4:3-4 For the time will come when THEY WILL NOT ENDURE SOUND DOCTRINE; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And THEY SHALL TURN AWAY THEIR EARS FROM THE TRUTH, and SHALL BE TURNED UNTO FABLES.
Death compared to Sleep
When we literally fall asleep, sometimes we dream because our brain never really stops working but other times, we wake up and have no recollection of ever falling asleep. We just wake up not remembering what happened during the sleep. This same reference is made time and time again in scripture;
John 11:11-14 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. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit JESUS SPAKE OF HIS DEATH: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, LAZARUS IS DEAD.
Psalm 13:3 Consider and hear me, O Lord my God: lighten mine eyes, lest I SLEEP THE SLEEP OF DEATH;
1 Corinthians 15:51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; WE SHALL NOT ALL SLEEP, but we shall all be changed,
1 Thessalonians 4:14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so THEM ALSO WHICH SLEEP in Jesus will God bring with him.
Can the scriptures be any clearer than this? There isn’t any consciousness or feeling in death. Man’s soul doesn’t live on as some try to make the claim. So why does the bible liken death to sleep? The bible speaks in this way because it is implied that people wake up from being sleep. This allegory is a reference to being resurrected from death because death is not the end for mankind.
As with any bible study, there will always be naysayers. So I’ve heard people ask the question, what about Luke 23:43? Let’s take a look at it;
And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.
This verse has caused quite a bit of confusion and it is also used to make the claim that a believer immediately receives the promise of eternal (aionios) life after death. With this interpretation, we again have a contradiction in scripture. At the crucifixion of Christ, we know that Jesus physically died that day. How could he be in paradise and dead at the same time? If there is a contradiction, it is the interpretation that has been contradicted not scripture.
Let’s revisit the story of Lazarus and his resurrection;
John 11:43-45 And when he thus had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. And he that was dead came forth, bound hand and foot with graveclothes: and his face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them, Loose him, and let him go. Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him. [Okay, so let’s examine this scenario; Lazarus dies and is buried. Those who believe that the soul of a man continues to live on at death would conclude that Lazarus most likely went to heaven (paradise). Days later, he is resurrected back on Earth. Do you think that it’s strange that Lazarus had nothing to say about spending a few glorious days with God in heaven? How can one receive the promise of eternal (aionios) life in paradise but then get it stripped away a few days later forced back into the realm of the mortal? If I was Lazarus and this were true, I’d be ready to fight Jesus for resurrecting me. This of course is absurd to say the least. Think sometimes before you just believe whatever someone tells you. Lazarus was dead and he had no thoughts, memories, or feelings whatsoever while he was dead.]
For you folks that think Lazarus was in heaven, read this; John 1:18 NO MAN HATH SEEN GOD AT ANY TIME, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. [Lazarus was not in heaven or paradise with God nor was the sinner on the cross. Note: I am completely aware of the total unscriptural belief that “paradise” is a section of hades which is supposedly different from “heaven” in which believers go to before judgment. There is no scripture that supports this belief and it is a terrible interpretation of the words of Christ.]
So, when Lazarus died, he was dead in the ground for four days and had already started to stink. Even Martha (sister of Lazarus) knew that you didn’t immediately go to “heaven” upon death. Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day. John 11:24 Martha knew full well that Lazarus was not in “heaven”. So if this is the case, then what is the explanation for Luke 23:43?
The explanation of Luke 23:43 is a translation error. Let me show you what this scripture looks like in the Greek;
καὶ εἶπεν αὐτῷ ἀμήν σοι λέγω σήμερον μετ’ ἐμοῦ ἔσῃ ἐν τῷ παραδείσῳ
Notice anything missing? How about the two little commas that you see in the English translation that was placed there to fit the interpretation of the King James translators?
And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in paradise. [The purpose of a comma is to separate clauses in complex sentence structures. So as you can see, in this case, the placement of such commas is crucial in understanding the meaning of the words that Christ spoke. This is not semantics but rather simple sentence structure. If we read this scripture as it is written in the King James translation, it presents a wealth of confusion and even more contradictory interpretations.]
This is how Jesus spoke it and how it should be read as it is in the Concordant Literal New Testament;
And Jesus said to him, “Verily, to you am I saying TODAY, with Me shall you be in paradise.”
So we see in this translation, Jesus is making a proclamation to the sinner on that particular day not that he would receive the promise on that day. Remember that the scriptures do not contradict; they blend together in perfect harmony.
Absent from the body –Present with the Lord
So back to 2 Corinthians 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be ABSENT FROM THE BODY, and to be PRESENT WITH THE LORD.
It is easy to get confused about the meaning of this verse if we only read this verse without reading the verses before and after (or the context) of this verse. In addition, this verse doesn’t read well in the King James Version. Let’s first look at this verse in some other translations;
we have courage, and are well pleased rather to be away from the home of the body, and to be at home with the Lord. Young’s Literal Translation
yet we are encouraged, and are delighting rather to be away from home out of the body and to be at home with the Lord. Concordant Literal New Testament
Now let’s read 2 Corinthians 5:1-8
For we know that if our EARTHLY HOUSE of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a BUILDING OF GOD, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For IN THIS WE GROAN, EARNESTLY DESIRING TO BE CLOTHED UPON WITH OUR HOUSE WHICH IS FROM HEAVEN: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are IN THIS TABERNACLE DO GROAN, being burdened: not for that we WOULD BE UNCLOTHED, but clothed upon, that MORTALITY MIGHT BE SWALLOWED UP OF LIFE. Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at HOME IN THE BODY, we are ABSENT FROM THE LORD: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing RATHER TO BE ABSENT FROM THE BODY, and to be PRESENT WITH THE LORD.
So Paul in these verses is giving a comparison to two types of bodies; earthly bodies and spiritual bodies. While in this life in our earthly bodies we groan (get sick, weary, stressed out, scared, etc.) and we would rather be in our spiritual bodies with the Lord (incorruptible and in power –but this takes place after the resurrection not at death). Although we suffer in this life, we don’t want to be UNCLOTHED – which Paul is referring to as being “dead” or “naked” because in this state, we have no existence. Humans are created beings and we have to have a body in order to have life. So we look forward to the spiritual bodies that we will receive at the resurrection to life with Christ. So to be clear, this passage of scripture has absolutely nothing to do with dying and immediately going to heaven.
The topic of natural (physical or earthly) and spiritual bodies is continued in 1 Corinthians 15. There is never even one inclination of a man existing in any form without a body.
1 Corinthians 15:44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. THERE IS A NATURAL BODY, AND THERE IS A SPIRITUAL BODY. The only thing that happens between being sown in a natural body and being raised a spiritual body is DEATH. One must die in order to be resurrected.
1 Corinthians 15:45 And so it is written, THE FIRST MAN ADAM WAS MADE A LIVING SOUL; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. In this verse, Paul is making a quote from the Old Testament with the phrase “made a living soul” but haven’t we already seen that statement before?
Genesis 2:7 And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and MAN BECAME A LIVING SOUL.
So we clearly see that man was made a “living soul” but men which are living souls DIE meaning that they are no longer are living. To suggest that the dead are really alive without a body is nonsense. Notice the comparison made in 1 Corinthians 15:45 that the last Adam (which is Christ) was made a “quickening spirit”. What is a quickening spirit? The word “quickening” is translated from the Greek word “zōopoieō” and this word is used to describe the resurrecting power that God used in the resurrection of Christ.
Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also QUICKEN YOUR MORTAL BODIES by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. This tells us that this quickening is different from just being a “living soul” but a quickening in which DEATH has no more power.
In Regards to Lost Love Ones
This may sound harsh and I by no means want to offend anyone but I’d rather you know the truth instead of continuing to believe the lies perpetuated in the church and in the world. When people die, they do not got to heaven looking down on you. People do not turn in to guardian angels or ghosts floating around haunting houses. There is no such thing as a literal heaven with streets of gold and physical mansions or a literal hell that bad people go to upon death. It makes us feel good to think that our loves ones are in heavenly bliss with God. Nobody thinks that their loves ones are in hell and I can assure you that nobody is in the fabled hell being tortured. In all sincerity, neither of these scenarios (heaven and hell) are the truth. My father died in 2008 and I know that he is in the grave sleeping. He suffered the last several years of his life with Hepatitis B, kidney failure, and cirrhosis of the liver. Most of these ailments were due to a lifelong addiction to drugs and alcohol. Although he made many bad decisions, I know that he is no longer suffering at this time and I am at peace with this. He is not in heaven nor hell, he is in the grave resting until the resurrection to judgment in which God will teach him and everyone else the ways of righteousness. With that said, if you have lost loved ones, know that the common phrase, RIP (rest in peace) is most appropriate.
One last thought concerning immortality;
1 Timothy 6:15-16 Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; WHO ONLY HATH IMMORTALITY, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen. [So we can be sure that no man or soul is immortal because this is reserved only for the Almighty. The gift of immortality will eventually be given to all mankind in the end in which we will all become sons and daughters of the Most High. Now that is GOOD NEWS!!!!]
74 thoughts on “Does Man have an Immortal Soul?”
If we don’t have an immortal soul and simply “sleep” in the grave after death, how can we go on to face the judgement you speak of in your series of posts about Hell? Just curious how this works…
The state of the dead is not a permanent condition. In the resurrection, some will rise to age abiding life and some to age abiding judgment. Scripture reveals that the true believers in Christ are experiencing judgment now in this life and will not have to face judgment with the world at the consummation of this age. Hope this helps…
So what does “abiding judgement” mean as well as “abiding life”? Will some who get “abiding judgement” not receive eternal life? As to those who rise to “abiding life”, will they live forever in a new earth or something like that?
Abiding judgment means that some people, (actually most people) will be resurrected to a period of judgment. This judgment of God doesn’t include any kind of hell or torture as believed by the Christian church. During this period of judgment, people will learn righteousness. God’s judgment is about teaching and making correct, not torture.
Isaiah 26:9 With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for WHEN THY JUDGMENTS ARE IN THE EARTH, THE INHABITANTS OF THE WORLD WILL LEARN RIGHTEOUSNESS.
There are a select few or what the bible calls “God’s Elect” that will be resurrected to abiding life which is the 1,000 year reign with Christ on EARTH, not in some fairy-tale heaven in the clouds with streets of gold, pearly gates, and babies flying around playing harps. Those who are resurrected to judgment do not experience “abiding life” with Christ for the 1,000 years. Christ never promised eternal life to anyone. Christ only spoke of “aionios life”. Aionios is the Greek word that has been translated as the English words, eternal and everlasting. This is a gross translation error and you will definitely want to read my article titled, “The Truth about Eternal and Everlasting here, https://therealgospelofchrist.com/eternal-everlasting-the-truth-about-the-greek-words-aion-and-aionion/.
In regards to the ages of abiding judgment and abiding life, both ages will come to an end. In fact, all ages will eventually come to an end and Christ will turn over the Kingdom to God the Father so that God will be all in all. God will finalize His work by destroying all evil and He will also destroy death in the lake of fire. This world will pass away and God will create a new heaven and earth in which all humanity – including every single person that has ever been born will be with God forever. Hope this helps…
Definitely helps. As for the last part of your reply regarding everyone being with God in the new Earth- is there a Scriptural basis for that? I would love to look into this further. Learning a lot here and praying on it earnestly. Thanks for your replies.
To be specific, the verse to support everyone being with God in the new Heaven and Earth is Revelation 21:1-3; 1 And I saw a [new heaven and a new earth]: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. 2 And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, [the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God].
Now, these verses only makes sense if you understand first that God will save everyone. Christians will argue that these verses do not include all mankind because their understanding of God’s work of salvation is completely distorted. They will find any and every way possible to context their way out of the truth to support their own theories that is not supported by God’s word. Revelation 21:3 says that “the tabernacle of God is with men”. Does this imply that women aren’t included or is this just referring to the men who believed while they lived their short life on earth? Of course not. The Greek word “anthrōpos” is translated as the English word “men” in this verse. Generally speaking, this word means mankind or humanity as a whole. It can and is used to refer to just one man as Jesus is referred to as the Son of Man only proving that he was indeed a man but this does not change the meaning of the word. This word is never used to signify a distinct group of men. The Greek word anthrōpos is where we get the word anthropology from which is the study of humans as whole and not just a select group of humans such as just “Christian believers”.
There is a lot more information on this subject and at this point, I think it would be beneficial for you to study the work of L. Ray Smith. He is an incredible lay bible scholar and he has a wealth of biblical truth on his website at http://www.bibletruths.com/. You will definitely want to read his Lake of Fire series at some point but it is quite in depth and will take some time to read it all and probably even longer to embrace it all. In support of your question about everyone being with God, Mr. Smith explains this truth by discussing the three different harvests spoken of in the Old Testament concerning the Israelite’s in Part IV Seeing and Understanding the Invisible of his Lake of Fire series. To be fair, I think you should read the Lake of Fire series from beginning to end but the information is there for you to read as you see fit. God be with you
So in the end all humanity will live forever? I’m confused
Yes, there’s nothing to be confused about… God wants to be All in All and it would be difficult to be anything in dead people let alone being All! Do you have an issue with God making all of His creation immortal like He is?
I enjoyed your dissertation on the fact that humans do not have a separate immortal being, and if fact we are living souls that are subject to eternal death. However, upon reading your comments here in this section I come across this belief that every single human being that has existed will be saved. The book of Revelation alone is full of the fate of those who aren’t in the Book of Life and went up against God. In fact, it is clearly stated in Revelations chapter 20th. The whole chapter talks about that.
Here to be specific:
Judgment Before the Great White Throne
11 Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them.
12 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done.
13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done.
14 Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire.
15 And if anyone’s name was not found written in the Book of Life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.
Notice what it says in verse 15. If anyone’s name was NOT FOUNd written in the book of life they would take part in the second death (verse 14)
Fittingly, your dissertation about death then doesn’t allow for everyone to be saved because Revelations clearly states that people will be subject to the second death.
We are not living souls subjected to eternal death. If eternal death was the destiny for the majority of humanity then Jesus Christ dying for the sins of the world would end up being an epic failure on the part of God. Jesus came to take the death penalty away from humanity and that is why Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 15:22 that in Christ all shall be made alive. Death cannot be destroyed if there will be billions of people still locked in the prison of death. Death will still have dominion over them which means Christ will not have defeated all of His enemies. It is fine for you to disagree with my position but your use of Revelation 20:11-15 does not in any way prove that all will not be saved. What is clear from my estimation is that you do not know what the second death is. The book of Revelation is the most difficult book to understand because it is filled with symbols and metaphors. The second death is not a literal second physical death any more than Jesus has a literal double edged sword coming out of His mouth. This is a metaphor. Are there any other examples in the bible where death doesn’t mean literal death? Paul said he died daily. How can you die daily if death is supposed to refer to the end of someone’s life? Are believers not baptized into the death of Christ putting away the works of the old man and becoming a new creation? Do they literally die? Of course they don’t literally die they die to the works of the sinful man, the Adam in all of us. That is the second death, the death of the carnal self. So yes, those who’s name isn’t found written in the book of life will take part in the second death but this is not a death for which there will be no life. We can’t ignore Revelation 22:17 where the Spirit and the bride say “Come” but who are they talking to? This is an invitation to those outside of the city if you read the whole chapter. They are all offered to take of the water of life freely and I think it’s no stretch to think that those coming out of the lake of fire judgment might be a little thirsty. In Revelation 22:2, we read of the tree of life which leaves were for the healing of the nations. Who would need to be healed if God has eternally destroyed the wicked unbelieving nations? You have formed a doctrine based solely on an inaccurate understanding of the meaning of the second death.
You surely have put a twist on many many things that are taken for granted in Christendom. And you do it in a systematic way and not haphazardly like many are want to do.
May I ask where you learnt all this? Was it in a particular Bible school? I don’t see many who teach things similar to you as this thorough.
Another thing I’d like to ask is if all this is true as you teach (I’m still studying) why would the Almighty God allow such gross violations of his word which have led to so much unspeakable horrors and suffering? Is that not why the Muslims claim that their “holy book” is pure as it is hardly tampered with in the name of translations and transliteration?
Will Satan, the fallen angels and demons be straightened out as well or is it only mankind? And the life we’ll live when Christ hands over everything to God, will that just be for a period as well? And if so, what happens after that? A new form of life and living?
Finally, for now, if God is going to sort everything out ANYWAY, why did he have to send Jesus Christ his Son?
I will stop here for now.
May the Spirit of God guide us all into all truth.
Hello and thanks for your comment… Over the years, I learned things from a variety of people but I have never attended any Bible school. Probably the most influential person for me is a man named L. Ray Smith and his website http://www.bibletruths.com. From his site, I learned how to study the scriptures with a Hebrew and Greek concordance and I also learned how to actually study the bible instead of just reading it.
Why would the Almighty God allow such gross violations of his word which have led to so much unspeakable horrors and suffering? God allows men to live out the deceits of their hearts to show men how wicked they are. We are living in an age of evil, deception, and corruption. Revelation 12:9 says that Satan deceives the WHOLE WORLD… In order for the whole world to be deceived, there has to be a lot of room for deception to exist. There is nothing wrong with the scriptures being translated because people speak and read different languages. The problem exists when men choose to corrupt the word of God to promote man’s evil carnal agenda.
Will Satan, the fallen angels and demons be straightened out as well or is it only mankind? Satan and his messengers will experience the age-lasting fire of God’s judgment which will result in production of righteousness.
And the life we’ll live when Christ hands over everything to God, will that just be for a period as well? And if so, what happens after that? A new form of life and living? When Christ hands over the kingdom to God, we are not told specifically what life will be like but we are told that death will be abolished, God will wipe away all tears, and we will all be made in the perfect spiritual image of God. We will all be spiritual immortal children of the Most High…
If God is going to sort everything out ANYWAY, why did he have to send Jesus Christ his Son? God doesn’t sort everything out ANYWAY, He sorts out everything GOD’S WAY… God sending Jesus Christ to die for the sins of the world is how He sorts out everything. The wages of sin is DEATH and NOT an “eternal life” being tortured. Life is a gift and not a punishment for sin. Jesus Christ was sent to die for us all since we are all sinners so that we can have life. There is a process to being made in the perfect spiritual image of God and that process requires obtaining the knowledge of good and EVIL. We are experiencing evil in this life as well as good and all will be made alive in Christ in their proper order.
Hii Sulaiman 😊 a believer asks me what is death. How do I answer him?
Tell them to look up the word in a dictionary…
Could you give the proper meaning of this Scripture:
” For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 22 If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! 23 I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; 24 but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.” Philippians 1:21-24
Paul is making a clear distinction about living in the body or departing to be with Christ. It seems that if Paul knew that to depart to be with Christ would be just to be be in the grave would not be something of a desire nor better by far. However, he does say, ” I desire to depart and be with Christ.”
Paul is simply weighing the benefits of remaining alive in his current body as opposed to dying and gaining his immortal glorified body in the resurrection. Paul knew that departing to be with Christ would include an unknown duration of time spent in the grave but that time period is irrelevant to the person that is dead because there is no consciousness, understanding, or feelings in death. When people die, they stay in the state of death until the RESURRECTION of the dead. To be dead is the opposite of being alive and Paul has been dead for almost 2,000 years yet he is still not with Christ, not yet anyway… Paul says to LIVE is Christ but he is not alive he is dead but in being dead, he is closer to being with Christ (which is gain) because he knows that his next conscious experience will be in the resurrection. It matters little if Paul is dead for 2,000 years or 2,000,000 years because all that time spent in the state of death is not felt or comprehended in any way. A better way to think about the state of death is to think of the place you were before you were born. Where did you exist before you were born? You didn’t exist and you return to that same place of being non-existent at death. There is no purgatory or afterlife, those are all man-made fantasies… There is life and then there is death. Coming back to life from the state of being dead requires Godly intervention and the only God-approved event that I know of that describes dead people being brought back to life is in the resurrection events described in 1 Corinthians 15:21-24;
For since death came through a man, (through Adam) also the resurrection of the dead has come through a man (through Christ). For just as in connection with Adam all die, so in connection with the Messiah all will be made alive. But each in his own order: the Messiah is the firstfruits; then those who belong to the Messiah, at the time of his coming; then the culmination, when he hands over the Kingdom to God the Father, after having put an end to every rulership, yes, to every authority and power.
So, Paul was kind of in a rock and a hard place because he longed to die or (sleep in the grave) while awaiting the resurrection to be with Christ but he also saw the benefits of staying alive in the body to continue his fruitful labor with the saints on earth. This has nothing to do with man having an immortal soul or believers immediately going to Christ at death. Nobody goes anywhere at death… The body returns to the earth, and the “spirit” or source of life returns to God. The person no longer exists… There is another scripture that Christianity uses to justify immediately being with Christ or going to heaven at death and it is 2 Corinthians 5:8;
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
I’ve heard many pastors preach this as if being absent from the body immediately results in being present with the Lord but what they fail to consider is the phrase “to be”… “To be” speaks of a place in time that is “future”… “To be” absent from the body refers to the future event of death but we do not know when we will die so likewise, “to be” present with the Lord is also a future event as in the resurrection and we also do not know when Christ will return. So living in the body on earth refers to this present life while departing (dying) from this world to be with Christ refers to life in a future age to come when Christ destroys the last enemy which is death.
Thanks for your comment!
The bible says we will be persecuted for telling the truth in the gospel. Unlike you, I returned to church to start learning about gospel truth. I would not have started researching the bible unless I was spurred on by the pastors I have listened to, though they do not believe as I do that God will bring all mankind to Him, I was still moved to learn God’s truth. This may sound obsessive, but I have 15 different windows open to learn what God’s truth is and have become more and more open minded. I want to say that the site “bible inconsistancies” and “bible truths” really helped me get to the real gospel along with the sites to learn biblical hebrew & greek. Currently our church is in a series called “Messy church people with a strikethrough on church and the last couple sermons have been truth in grace, speaking truth with grace. I have a ways to go, but your site as well as the other 14 are helping me. That being said, this part of false doctrine has been difficult for me to “own” as my mother stopped breathing & was considered dead in the hospital & her experience was not that she was in heaven but that loving arms were reaching out to receive her in the “light” and she said in her recollection “I’m not ready”, she woke up a day or so later not realizing she had lost a whole day. Your dreaming explanation can help resolve this, I believe as while asleep we sometimes remember dreams upon waking and sometimes not. Jesus does refer to death as being asleep quite often & with His sacrifice “death has lost it’s sting”, no longer permanent, but as most who use non-scriptural explanations as to why all will not be saved, so is my open-mindedness on this part although scripture specifically states that there is no memory in this death-like sleep.
On another note, it states in scripture, 1 Corinthians 2:15, 2 Corinthians 5:10, that all will come before the throne in judgement, some to reward others will suffer loss but they to will be saved. The scripture specifically states ALL will be judged, all will be saved. Thank you for helping us to see the true gospel (good news) from God to humanity.
Thanks for commenting! What I always like to explain to people regarding death is that medical science has a distinction between clinical death and biological death. A person can be brought back to life from clinical death if biological functions are restored. There is NOBODY (save Christ and those resurrected by the power of God) that has come back to life from biological death. If the brain is still working processing thoughts and images then the brain still has biological function which means that there is a part of you that is still alive even being on the brink of biological death. A person can be pronounced as being clinically dead which only means that the heart has stopped beating and there is no breathing but a person can be restored from this state. However, if there is no medical intervention during that state, the person will be biologically dead within minutes and there is no restoration after that state. All of this stuff is really not that hard to understand but Christians run around in circles because they spend too much time trying to squeeze truth into a lies. I’m glad to hear that God has opened up your understanding to know and accept that He will in fact save all of mankind!
Thank you for that, it did dawn on me just prior to reading your response that it is the brain that is the central hub of our existance, in comically modern terms it is our main computer or server as it controls all of our functions, so these “near-death” experiences could be “dream” states. This confirms and reconciles biblical truth to human experiences, I am one of those that needs God’s word to reconcile, thank you again.
Yes, it is Yah/God’s will to save all of us but it’s hard to believe men like Aleister Crowley, Albert Pike and many more will be Tabernacling with Yahuwah. I guess that is what it means in Revelations that they saw many dressed in white robes and palms in their hands that was beyond count meant. I’m new to all this so forgive me for not knowing the exact scriptural number in Revelation for this verse. It was hard for me when I found out that we didn’t have a soul as the Christians preached but that doctrine of an immortal Soul makes God a liar and takes away what Yahusha/Jesus did for us. Thanks for everything
If we surmise that God’s salvation must take effect during this life/age then yes it would seem hard to believe that certain people would be taberncling with God. The problem with this assumption is that it limits God to only being capable of accomplishing His will during the present age. The scriptures, however, do not support such a theory. There will be a future resurrection to judgment for all of the wicked and unbelieving populations but God judges in righteousness. The purpose of judgment is to correct and to influence law-abiding behavior. When we (humans) of civilized society break the law, we aren’t sent to torture centers we go before a judge. If found guilty we receive a punishment that for most part suits the offense. Small offense small judgment, large offense large judgment. Even if death is the final judgment death is not inhumane. Causing pain to others with no redeeming value is evil but we learn to do the right thing through varying forms of suffering. The world is a harsh place to exist in with some places being much worse than others but that is why we learn from our parents and society to get an education and to work hard. That is to avoid unnecessary due hardship and to live a decent life hopefully limiting the amount of struggle we sometimes experience. If we as humans can operate at a semi-moral level then how much more moral will the Creator of all things be?
The immortal soul heresy is part of the reason why Christians believe in an eternal hell. If you are immortal then you have to exist somewhere but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Humans do not have a soul, we are a soul – a living soul at that. Another way to look at is like cosidering the life God has. God doesn’t possess a life, He is life. So in the same way, humans do not possess a soul as if it is something we can gain or lose, we are a soul. When we die, we become a dead soul. A soul is a person, a human, you, me, and everyone. It is not an extension of us or 50% of who we are. We are 100% a soul with a life giving to us by God. When God’s life giving spirit is taken away, we die… and I mean all the way dead. When we die, we go back to the same place we were before we were born and that is the place of nothingness and nonexistence.
It would have been nice if you included a discussion on how early church fathers adopted Greek philosophy especially that of plato’s dualism where from all this dogma originated.
ALL WILL BE FORGIVEN BUT THE BLASPHEMY OF THE HOLY GHOST, NOT IN THIS LIFE OR THE LIFE TO COME, I MEANT “AGE” NOT LIFE. I DON’T HEAR YOU SPEAK OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AT ALL. WHY? DO YOU HAVE THE HOLY SPIRIT? WHY SHOULD I TRUST YOUR TEACHINGS AND NOT THAT OF FUNDAMENTALISM?
What you choose to believe is your choice and whatever it is that you choose to believe shouldn’t be predicated on anything I say. Be convinced in your own mind on what it is you want to believe. My words speak for themselves… What kind of a question is, “Do you have the Holy Spirit” as if the Spirit of God is something to boast about? I find it to be arrogant and despicable when Christians proclaim that they have the “spirit of God” when if the truth be told they actually don’t. We are told in 2 Corinthians 1:22 and in 2 Corinthians 5:5 that we have the “EARNEST” of God’s Spirit. Do you know what earnest means? If we apply this meaning with how it is used when purchasing a house, an earnest payment refers to a very small down payment so we have a very small portion of God’s Spirit in this life. The full measure of God’s Spirit will never be experienced or realized in this life while we live inside of dying sinful corruptible bodies. I will not be accountable for what you choose to believe, you will be accountable for what you choose to believe…
I want to encourage you to continue to add to your website. The topics are those very ones EVERY “Christian” needs to examine. Well done. I do have a few questions for clarification. I understand the first fruits resurrection of the elect and the second coming of Messiah. I also understand that we, who will have spiritual bodies, are to reign with Messiah on the literal earth. Question? Is this when we will judge all men (mortal, flesh and blood people) and angels? Additionally, L.Ray Smith teaches that we are the Kingdom of the heavens, and that flesh and blood cannot enter the kingdom. So flesh and blood mortal human beings will still be on earth, and we will judge them and teach them the ways of righteousness (Isaiah 26). Am I understanding this correctly? Lastly, the 1000 years is not literally “1000 years”, It can be any length of time that will have a definite end. Does the second resurrection occur AFTER this period of time of judgment and instruction in righteousness?
Thanks in advance for your response. Blessings and shalom.
Ultimately God will be ALL in ALL and just as the physical heavens reign over the physical earth, the spiritual “heavens” (the first fruits) will reign over the spiritual earth (the rest of humanity). The old order of things (flesh and blood) will pass away. Those that rise in the second resurrection will rise in mortal flesh and blood bodies but they will be transformed into spiritual beings during the lake of fire judgment. This process is the destruction of the old carnal self that is symbolized as the “sea”, the sea of carnality. Revelation 21:1 says there will be no more sea when the physical heaven and earth passes away. God is “spirit” and the kingdom of God is spiritual so anything that isn’t spiritual will pass away. It is my understanding that the age of judgment begins in the second resurrection which is AFTER the age of “aionios life” that is promised to the first fruits in the first resurrection.
I’m beginning to understand but the resurrection of those not of first fruits still baffles me. You mentioned mortal followed by judgment followed by immortality. Do you have scripture references? I’m not as well-versed in the bible as most. Thanks again.
Absolutely! Read 1 Corinthians 15 the whole chapter but let me put some of the main themes in a better perspective for you…
Let’s take a look at 1 Corinthians 15:21-24 quoted from the Concordant Literal New Testament;
For since, in fact, through a man came death, through a Man, also, comes the resurrection of the dead. For even as, in Adam, all are dying, thus also, in Christ, shall all be vivified. Yet each in his own class: the Firstfruit, Christ; thereupon those who are Christ’s in His presence; thereafter the consummation, whenever He may be giving up the kingdom to His God and Father, whenever He should be nullifying all sovereignty and all authority and power.
From these scriptures alone, we see clearly that in Christ, ALL shall be “vivified” that is brought back to life for which death no longer has dominion but the key to understanding this mystery is that being vivified in Christ occurs in each one’s own class or order.
Christ technically speaking is the “firstfruit” that is – he was the first to experience the resurrection of God’s harvest to which there is no more death (being resurrected to IMMORTALITY) but the actual firstfruit class refers to those who are Christ’s in His presence. These are those that rise in the first resurrection.
Notice in verse 24, it says, “thereafter the consummation”… this is the second resurrection to judgment of the entire world. Those that rise in the second resurrection will experience the lake of fire second death judgment which is the destruction of the carnal self.
Verse 53, mortality will put on immortality but (verse 50) corruption doesn’t inherit incorruption. Those that rise in the first resurrection go through judgment in this life (1 Peter 4:17). Those that rise in the second resurrection go through judgment after they are resurrected. So we all follow the process of being mortal sinners subjected to sin and death, then going through judgment, then being born in the “spirit” to immortality.
Brother you are really helping me unravel these scriptures. I now see the order more clearly than before. I bring too much baggage (doctrines of demons and church dogma) into the mix.
Just for my clarification, there will be the resurrection (first fruits) of the chosen and elect to immortality. This is followed by the second coming and reign of Messiah on earth for the “non-literal” thousand years. It is a fixed period of time that only God knows. During this time the “first fruits” will judge the nations and angels. Then there will be the second resurrection of all humanity to be sent through the gauntlet (lake of fire or second death). Each individual, after judgment, will be changed to an immortal spiritual being. Lastly, Messiah turns over the kingdom to the Father. This will truly be the consummation of all that began in the Garden.
Am I fairly accurate in this order? I welcome any and all correction.
Blessings and shalom.
The chosen elect will not judge the nations or angels during the first resurrection because those who rise in the second resurrection will still be dead and in the grave awaiting their judgment in the second resurrection order. There is a resurrection age to “life” and then there will be a succeeding resurrection age to “judgment”. There will be NO judgment in the first resurrection age. I can’t even begin to imagine what life will be like for first resurrection participants but the scriptures have given us clues. We know from John 3:8 that everyone that is “born” of the Spirit is like the WIND…. many Christians falsely claim that they are “born again” but truth be told, NOBODY is actually “born again” in this life. I have never met a Christian that was like the wind that is – invisible and capable of flying. We are told in 2 Corinthians 1:22 and in 2 Corinthians 5:5 that believers have the “earnest” of God’s spirit. We only have a very small down payment but the actual full manifestation of being “born” in the spirit occurs in the resurrection, however, people are babies at birth. Daniel 12:3 tells us that those who are WISE will turn many to righteousness but wisdom is gained through time and experience. I believe that there will be a lot of spiritual parenting that will take place in the first resurrection that will prepare the saints to be the wise ones that will judge the world and lead them to righteousness.
Isaiah 26:9 With my soul have I desired You in the night; yes, with my spirit within me will I seek You early: for when Your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.
God’s judgments are the chosen elect!
When the age of the first resurrection comes to an end, the rest of the world will rise in the second resurrection. The lake of fire is simply a symbol for God’s spiritual fire that purges and purified anything of little to no value. The chosen elect will already be filled with the Spirit of God in full measure so the chosen elect are the lake of fire for which the world will be subjected to the second death which is the death of Adam in all of us.
Obadiah 1:21 And SAVIORS (God’s chosen elect – the wise judges) shall come up on mount Zion to judge the “mount of Esau” (the world of carnality); and the kingdom shall be the Lord’s.
God will be ALL in ALL!
I hope this helps and I’m glad I’ve been helpful for you! Blessing brother and much peace to you and yours…
It helps immensely. Blessings in return.
Glad to hear that brother!
Howdy, My name is Walt I live in Boise, ID. I agree with much of what you say. But I disagree with your endorsement of L.Ray Smith. He believed that everyone including Satan would be saved. Nonsense! All not found written in the book of life will be cast into the lake of fire. (rev. 20:15) Then they will all cease to exist. PS The lake of fire will be the earth when Elohim renews the earth and cleanses creation of all evil.
Revelation 22:17 And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.
If what you say is true, then who is being invited to come? This verse is recorded after all of the casting in the lake of fire which you claim everyone will cease to exist at that point. If only the bride of Christ remains who is being invited to come?
Thanks for your response. Everything in the book of Rev. is not in chronological order. Rev. 22 is an epilogue, further commentary on what has come before. Please don’t misunderstand me on L.Ray Smith, I learned from him. One thing I whole heartily agree with him is that man has no free will ! Elohim is the cause of all things. Our next heart beat, our next breath, our next thought, all things both good and evil. Prov. 21:1. People wonder about the fall of Satan, he fell when Elohim turned his heart to evil (Psalm 105:25). I thank you for your time. Walt.
Yes it is true that Revelation is not written in chronological order however, there is no instruction as to that specific invitation recorded in Revelation 21:17 being rescinded. Is there a time when Revelation 21:17 would be invalid? I don’t think so but the invitation will be complete in full measure when all come to partake in God’s glory. The context of Psalms 105:25 in regards to hearts being turned to evil is referring to the Egyptians and not Satan. Satan was a liar and a murderer from the beginning. He never fell from anything for he was created to be God’s destroyer. Satan’s purpose in the garden was to deceive. Satan is doing exactly what he was created to do and when the time comes for him to be tested through the fire, he will be refined as will all of humanity. The lake of fire is spiritual not literal. If I put a piece of silver in fire the silver doesn’t burn up because silver is valuable. What burns is the dross that builds up on the outside leaving the piece of silver shiny and prettier. This is the purpose of God’s fire. In literal fire we would just burn up to ashes but literally everything in the book of Revelation is symbolic. We all have dross in our lives that needs to be burned out and only the spirit of God can completely eradicate our sinful carnality.
I used psalm 105:25 As a proof text to show that Elohim is the cause of all things both good and evil. Nothing escapes His sovereignty. All things are predetermined by Elohim, from the supernova of a gigantic star to what you had for breakfast. Satan was created to be what he was to become, all of us are. We are simply living out Elohim’s eternal decree. I believe Satan/Lucifer was created sinless (Ez.28:15) until Elohim caused him to become lawless. PS The term God is unclean. It comes from the ancient pagans of northern Europe worshiped their sun deity with the names gud/gott, which was transliterated into the English as God.
Of course God is ultimately the cause of all things good and evil but the context of Psalm 105:25 is referring to humanity and not Satan. I disagree that all things are predetermined for what you and I choose to have for breakfast is virtually insignificant on the grand scheme of things. God doesn’t care if I choose toast over a bagel because that is simply my preference of what is available to me at that time. God has given power to His creation and the creation can operate within the boundaries set by the Creator. The word “lucifer” is not even a proper noun but simply a Latin adjective meaning light bearer. Lucifer is found 3 times in the Latin Vulgate and they are never used to describe the name of a person. When the Latin bible was translated into English, they translated “lucifer” appropriately in 2 of the 3 scriptures with the exception being Isaiah 14:12. There is no responsible reason for this and bible translators simply inserted their own theology into the scriptures. Many people mistakenly believe that Satan is the subject matter of Ezekiel 28 but there is no basis for such a teaching. Satan is not the king of Tyrus and the king of Tyrus is not Satan. Verse 2 of that chapter clearly states that the king of Tyrus was a man and not God. It is man that attempts to exalt himself as God in the throne of his own heart. As for the title “God”, it is simply a title meaning supreme being (deity) and it is commonly accepted as such and is an appropriate modern term. Elohim is a Hebrew word and while I see nothing wrong with the word itself, we are discussing things pertaining to what is earthly. The Creator is not bound to the Hebrew language or any other earthly construct. What was God called before the Hebrew language was created? We simply don’t know so we have to use what has been given to us.
Hi, The creator of all things, who’s eternal name is Yahuah, is concerned with every sub-atomic particle in His creation. His eternal Son, who’s true name is Yahusha, said a sparrow does not land on the ground except by the Fathers will, and that the very hairs of your head are all numbered (Matt 10 29,30). Every second of His creation is pre-determind. Elohim knows your future because He has planned everything. You were conceived the exact second He decreed. Every moment of your being is determined by Elohim. All your thoughts, your desires, your motives, your words, your deeds (Prov. 16: 1,9,33. 19: 21. 20: 24. 21: 1. Jer.10: 23). Nothing is independent of His determination. There is no freewill. He is the infinite Potter we are the clay. In Isaiah 14 and in Ez. 28 are personifications of Satan, that portray his fall from creature perfection to the depths of evil. Many people question why their is evil in Elohim’s creation. He created evil creatures so that He might show His wrath and make His power known (Rom. 9: 17thru23). Jer.19:21, teaches that Elohim’s eternal decree will never fail. It’s most minute detail will be fulfilled. His plan goes on into infinity because He is Infinite and Almighty, the Eternal One. Thanks for your responses.
I’m not going to get into a debate with you about names as I consider it to be trivial and foolish. You are welcome to call the Creator and His son whatever you want to call them. God can certainly be concerned with all of His creation but that doesn’t mean that He is behind the scenes puppeteering every single detail. That is nonsense. Your usage of Matthew 10:29-30 is blatantly out of context. The subject matter of the text is regarding death and the fear of it. A sparrow doesn’t fall on the ground in DEATH without the Father as it is common knowledge that God controls the life of all living creatures. God counting the number of hairs on your head is an expression of value of the person especially in regards to that of many sparrows. If God controls the life of a sparrow, then do not fear death for God controls the life that you have as well. We are going to have to agree to disagree about predetermination. I simply do not believe that God has predetermined every exact detail but that doesn’t mean that God isn’t responsible. God is not determined that men should rape little girls. Men rape little girls because when men are drawn away by their OWN LUSTS, men will submit to whatever is the strongest motivator in their hearts. Like I said before, God has given power to His creation and the creation can operate within the boundaries of that power. The earth has power. God has given power to the earth and the earth cannot operate within the boundaries of the power it has been given. God doesn’t predetermine for it to rain on one day as opposed to another day because He has given that power to the earth to control. I am not in any way trying to take away God’s complete sovereignty over His creation I am simply stating that God has given power to His creation and the creation can operate within the limits of the that power. You have a brain, emotions, a body, and a heart all given to you by the Creator. If the Creator was going to manipulate every single detail of your life down to how many boogers you decide to pick out of your nose then it just doesn’t seem fitting that we would have the capabilities to demonstrate such individual expression. God knowing my future doesn’t mean that God won’t allow me to take my own path where I make mistakes for learning from mistakes is a part of life. Just because God knows what man is capable of with the heart He gave them doesn’t mean that He has specifically and purposefully foreordained people to be child molesters. That is ridiculous. In Jeremiah we read that sacrificing children to the pagan god Molech NEVER came into God’s heart. Did God know it would happen? Yes, but that practice was not determined by God at all it was determined by the evil hearts of men. I am well aware that free will is an illusion but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have a will at all. God has a will and man has a will. God is allowing humanity to live out his own vanity filled will in this life while He calls and chooses out select people to do His purpose.
In regards to your comments about the scriptures in Isaiah 14 and Ezekiel 28, many people before you have used those scriptures to justify the teachings of Satan made to be a perfect creature before his fall. This theology is unsound and unbiblical. Most responsible modern bible translations have taken the word “Lucifer” out of Isaiah 14:12 because they realized that it was a blatant translation error. There is absolutely NO scriptural justification to conclude that those scriptures are personifications of Satan. That is nothing but pure man inspired theology that many choose to believe. Satan was never some angel named Lucifer. That is pure man-made theological gobbledygook. The king of Babylon and the king of Tyrus are personifications of MAN and man’s quest to be “god”. It has nothing to do with Satan. In the earliest depiction of Satan (the serpent) found in Genesis after his CREATION shows him to be a deceiver. When was Satan ever created perfect? People really do have to stretch beyond the boundaries of logic to embrace such a fallacious doctrine. I personally do not question why there is evil in God’s creation. Evil has a purpose and it is necessary in the instruction of righteousness. There is no such scripture as Jeremiah 19:21 as I looked it up to see your reference in which you claim that God’s “eternal” decree will never fail. There is NO word in the scriptures that means eternal. All of God’s decrees pertaining to what is temporal is age-lasting.
Is there a distinction between the “bride of Christ” and the “body of Christ”? Are they the same? If so, why is the body always referred to in the masculine gender while the bride is referred in the feminine gender? (I apologize for leaving out scriptural references) I always appreciate when you clarify my misconceptions. Thanks in advance brother.
Yes and no… think of your question in relationship to that of a woman and a wife. Both are female but a woman becomes a wife only after she is given in marriage. In the same manner, the body of Christ becomes the bride of Christ only during a marriage event but even with this it is merely a figure that symbolizes oneness. The Greek word for body is “soma” and it is actually a neuter noun meaning it doesn’t have a gender distinction (a body could be male or female). The Greek word for bride is “nymphē” and it is a feminine noun simply because brides are always female.
Thanks for the quick response. I’m learning so much. It’s hard when I’ve been in the “Babylonian system” for over 40 years.
I hate to ask redundant questions but the sequence of events as outlined in 1 Corinthians 15 concerning the order of resurrection and what happens during each segment still puzzles me.
We are the first fruits who will be the next to be raised. I got that down. What will be do during that time? Are we ruling and teaching on the literal earth to mortal human beings as a fulfillment of many prophecies? Any additional Scripture references will help me be a good Berean.
When does the second resurrection take place? I get confused trying to replace my previous understanding with biblical truth. I sincerely appreciate your time in instructing me on my journey.
I would caution you not to worry about or get too caught up with what happens in the future ages to come after this one for there is plenty to worry about in this life alone. I cannot tell you exactly what first resurrection participants will be doing during the first resurrection because the scriptures do not give such details. The book of Revelation talks about a variety of things given to the one the overcomes including;
1) eating of the tree of life which is in the midst of the paradise of God
2) not be hurt of the second death
3) given power over the nations
4) made a pillar in the temple of my God
5) clothed in a white raiment
6) given a new name, and
7) sitting with Christ on his throne
One thing to be clear about is that the reigning and judging of the world does not occur during the symbolic 1,000 year period of the first resurrection because the rest of the world will still be dead and in the grave awaiting the second resurrection to judgment. However, there is just not enough biblical evidence that explains what life will be like in the resurrection age so for the most part that will remain a mystery. There are clues though so we can use the clues to put together a partial picture. This is my own speculation for which I have no biblical source text but I know that when I was born in the flesh, I was born a baby. I depended on my parents for everything. I grew up and I learned eventually becoming the man that I am today. I have no reason to think that being born in the spirit would be any different in regards to being like a baby and in need of constant parenting and teaching. I believe that the first resurrection age will be an age in which the firstfruits will be the first to experience what life is like in the spiritual but they will be spiritual babies so to speak. When the second resurrection age commences the firstfruits will be wise judges after going through the spiritual parenting, teaching, instruction, and building of God’s spiritual kingdom.
I do appreciate your patience and I realize that I’m asking questions that only God will reveal in that day. Nevertheless you have encouraged me to look at my portion of the world with spiritual eyes, and listen with spiritual ears.
As a side note, I have read all your postings on your website. Honestly I had to read several of them many times to really grasp your explanations. That is very refreshing in a world of harsh criticism without substantial biblical support. And yes, I am a good Berean.
I trust that you have more teachings in the queue.
Do you receive any financial support for the website?
Blessings and shalom my brother.
Yes I do plan to post more teachings in the future but work and family commitments make that challenging for sure. I don’t receive any financial support but the admin costs for WordPress and domain registration is not really that expensive. It’s really a time issue with just finding the necessary time to dedicate to writing. Hopefully one day I can get the information about hell published as a book as I know that teaching has many deceived. Hope all remains well with you brother and blessings to you as well!
Hello, I am a guy from Norway posting hope you can accept may bad english as I write my asking questions. I follow and have read all articles on this page, and find it mighty interessting.
I wonder your thoughts on the parabels in Luk 17 verse 31-35. Also I have investigated the differences between the Words in John 1 verse 1 – 18. Greek word: lambano, katalambano and paralambano are all translated received in the old King James version. There are differences witch make the big picture too be quite different combined with the greek word: skotos. To me it seems to emply that everything is Gods beliefe in my heart since sons of God is Love as scripture tell by beeing children of God.
What do you think about that?
The parabolic teachings in Luke 17:31-35 have to deal repentance, being spiritually converted, and the two remaining resurrection events spoken of in 1 Corinthians 15.
“In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back.
(When you repent, you don’t turn back to your old lifestyle because you are a new creature).
Remember Lot’s wife. (Lot’s wife was turned into a pillar of salt when she looked back at Sodom but why salt? Because salt is a preservative and those that are more concerned with the affairs of this world are being “preserved” for a future judgment).
Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it. I tell you, in that night there will be two men in one bed: the one will be taken and the other will be left. Two women will be grinding together: the one will be taken and the other left.
(Seeking to save your carnal self will actually result in you losing it but dying to your carnal self will result in you gaining new life in the spirit. There are two groups in view here, two resurrections, and two outcomes – life vs judgment).
I don’t really follow you on your second question about the different Greek words so feel free to elaborate if you wish…
Ok. First of all thank you for claryfing those parabels mentiond.
About John 1 verse 1- 18 The wors darkness : Greek skotos means spiritual darkness witch blocks the ability to take too oneself what is given. In verse 5 the word received is translated katalambano means : get hold of spiritual understanding. So when in verse 11 received is translated: paralambano it has another meaning than in verse 5 and 12. It can mean be transmitted from someone, to accept or get acknowledge of somting. Received is a poor translation of the real understanding the word and in context also verse 12 lambano is translated received like we have to choose believing. Here in Norway christians tell people it is there one ability to believe like in the free will. If you look at the last part of verse 12 i seams to me like it should be thogether with verse 13. Proclamation: Believe in his name who / witch is not of blood etc….. Instead All translations I have seen use the terms like it is us who are not born of blodd etc….. When we get to verse 16 lambano again is translated received 2 times but this time with the meaning as in mercy. There are things I can not quite catch.
Again sorry for my bad english, so just ask me again if you did not understand what I want to explane.
I would recommend that you study multiple translations just to see how different bible translations render certain words. Bible Gateway is an excellent resource to do just that. Also, what I’ve come to understand is that many bible translations especially those that follow closely with the King James Version have a lot of interpretation inserted into their bible translations. Let me use Romans 5:18 for an example… take a look at the Greek reverse interlinear of this scripture here https://www.blueletterbible.org/kjv/rom/5/12/t_conc_1051018 and focus on the Greek preposition “eis”. This preposition (G1519) is found 4 times in this one scripture but look at how they used it.
1) judgment came upon
3) the free gift came upon, and
Dr. Strong defines the Greek preposition “eis” as a preposition governing the accusative, and denoting entrance into, or direction and limit: (into, to, toward, for, and among). The word “upon” would certainly qualify as an appropriate translation for “eis” but where did they get the whole phrase “judgment came upon” and “the free gift came upon”? They added these words to the bible to strengthen their own theologies. There are Greek words for judgment (krisis) and gift (charisma) but neither of these words are found in the original Greek texts. This is blatant dishonest bible scholarship but the burden rests with the reader to discover these hidden gems of deceit. When I study a certain passage of scripture, I always look at different translations, then I look at the original words in the Hebrew and Greek, and I also study the usage of certain words.
Very interesting study on the words darkness and received…
I use a bluletterbible.org and look at the different traslations an see a lot of what you refered to. The translators use many different ways to make it seem like we have to believe in our own power and free will. words like: may have, might recieve and a lot of if and but. If you read 1 john chapter 4 you will see what I mean.
About the word lambano, look at philipians 3 ,12 when paul tells about how he try to get hold of spiritual understanding: Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus. Lambano and katalambano are the same words used in john 1 1-18. If we compare the similaritys in other scriptures used it is clear to me that it is Gods Faith in our heart that is the belief that is ment. Not my belief in my own power. Paul wrote in john 1.12 that: as many as recieved him, gave he the power to become sons of God. Some translations say CHILDREN of God. Now we all know what signify children of God. In matthew 5. Love youre enemys, so we can be CHILDREN OF GOD. And that is something we do not manage in our on Power. John 3.27 A man can recieve nothing, exept be given him from heaven. So paul never mentiond hell and he was not afraid of being away from christ in Romans 9.3 hi stated this: For I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh. Why because love made him since he knew like he stated in 1 thimoty 4.10 God is all mankinds saviour, but most to those who believe ( in power of Gods way LOVE ) is my conclusion.
Sorry my bad english feel free to correct my ranslations mistakes.
BlueLetterBible is a great resource and I also use it often. You are correct in your understanding. Everything is of God and we can do nothing unless God calls us first then chooses us for His purposes. The religious of men will always fail to understand the things of God because man’s religious agenda is to solely glorify the traditions and doctrines of men. I stopped going to “church buildings” years ago…
I agree, but even though a person may be dead, asleep, it’s the mercy of being unconscious with no awareness of time, so in effect, once you are out of here, unconscious in the dead sleep, you are actually present with the Lord in a blink of an eye. Much like when you sleep at night, or go through a seven hour surgery. You go out and the next second you’re awake and two, three, eight, ten – hours have passed. I used to marvel as a kid when my sisters and I would be left with a sitter and I’d be scared and they’d fall asleep before me, because I knew for them, that it was already morning. So I’d hope for sleep to come so it would be morning for me. So all those folks who’ve passed thousands of years ago, or your loved ones that may have passed recently, when they are awakened, which they are now, though they are not, it will be as if they just closed their eyes – for them, and for us.
That’s all I have to say about that.
I’m not sure I follow you… My dad passed away in 2008. He’s dead as of right now which he has been for nearly 11 years. He has no concept of time, feelings, or anything. In the resurrection he arise and to him it will feel like it was a second but in reality it could’ve been thousands of years. You might be saying the same thing but I might’ve just missed your point.
Yes. We are saying the same things. I was merely adding peace and comfort to your message to those who might be anxious about it. Those transformation periods of being dead are a blink of the eye as there is no consciousness in death. This is a mercy of God. It’s already morning for everyone who’s fallen asleep.
That’s what I though so I was just making sure. Thanks for clarification on that point!
Can you please give some explanation to the following verses? These are used often as a rebuttal to the idea of the mortal soul. Thanks is advance for your time!
I Pet 4:6 “For it is with this end in view that the Good News was proclaimed even to some who were dead, that they may be judged, as all mankind will be judged, in the body, but may be living a godly life in the spirit.”
I Pet 3:19 “19in which He also went and proclaimed His Message to the spirits that were in prison, 20who in ancient times had been disobedient, while God’s longsuffering was patiently waiting in the days of Noah during the building of the Ark, in which a few persons—eight in number—were brought safely through the water.”
We have to careful embracing interpretations that are blatant contradictions to other scriptural truths. We know that man was made a living soul not an immortal soul. The soul that sins shall die. The immortality of the soul is a doctrine of men. In regards to 1 Peter 4:6, the dead mentioned in that verse were alive at some point before they died. The gospel was preached to them during their life before they died. Preaching to a dead person is silliness. The dead know nothing. The same applies to 1 Peter 3:19. We have to make sure that we understand the difference between being alive and being dead. Jesus DIED for the sins of the world. Well, if we apply the true and accurate definition of death, then it makes no sense to even suggest that Christ was actually alive preaching to dead people when He was supposed to be dying for the world. If we apply verse 18 to the entire message then it can be understood better because verse 19 is not a complete statement. Christ was made alive in the Spirit and in the “spirit” the proclamation of His work applies to those who had already died.
Hi my name is Gilbert and is so refreshing to read the TRUTHS you have written here. GOD also used L ray smith to help me see a lot of your writings here. i found nothing i can disagree with. and for this i am thankful to GOD OUR FATHER. back in 2008 GOD put it in my heart to learn about tithing and low and behold when i put on search engine tithing L ray smith bible truths came up and since then i never looked back. i am so grateful that UNIVERSAL SALVATION is once again coming to life. before medieval times i have learned was the dominant teaching. Origen Clement of Alexandria and the list goes on so much that st Agustine said this “there are many among us who do not believe in eternal torment” maybe not exact words but is what he meant.
okay Mr Sulaiman Randolph [brother] i am perhaps rambling here but i just need you to know that i pray to our FATHER for endless wisdom for you and i want to thank you for your efforts. because though i know that it is GOD who give us the strength i know that is not easy at times. there are times when the devil come and attack us trying to put doubts in us. at times we feel alone if only for a moment. but even JESUS felt alone on the tree. i know you perhaps get awoke at 2:30 am because you know GOD will have you write a paper and after you pray and drink a cup of coffee you than begin your research and in your heart you are filled with joy. you love doing GOD’S work. i guess i am describing my self because i also write A LOT but i do not have what you have here brother. i only use facebook or when ever GOD takes me to folks i witness to them. GOD bless you brother. always. keep up the beautiful work brother. you are in my prayers.
Thank you for the kinds words brother! If you only knew the cup of what I am going through in my personal life and how your words resonate with what I am going through, I would hug you like a father hugs his son. Your words literally brought me to tears. I am going through a very messy divorce and it is not by choice my wife has just decided to let the world overcome her. I can only tell you that this flesh that we all have to deal with is a beast and it is very powerful. I am grateful that God using me as a vessel has helped others. I have many ideas to continuing working expanding into social media and writing books. Feel free to sent me a message here and there as I made this blog and comment section for people to engage with me and other people. God bless you brother!
I really think you are wrong here. First, God is eternal, so if He gave us part of Himself in order to be a living soul, we are eternal beings unless He destroys both the soul and body.
Second, the verses you use to prove that we simply sleep and know nothing are all verses stated before Christ’s finished work. Now it is easily possible for those who die in Christ to be with the Lord upon separating from their body dies and returns to dust.
I find it interesting how through your articles you are adamant about so many things being spiritual, which I do agree with you for the most part, but you would reject the possibility of spiritual senses, limbs, and so forth. Why couldn’t the 1st resurrection be the spiritual resurrection of the soul upon death of a believer. After all, scripture says that the 2nd death has no power over those who take part in the first resurrection. This you may be about to refute me on, but even still, I see much more evidence that consciousness continues after death, at least for some.
Also, scripture says that flesh and blood can’t enter God’s kingdom. Our soul could in Christ because of what He did. And spiritual bodies can in Christ. You could touch Jesus after His resurrection, but He also walked through walls and vanished out of sight. He was completely changed.
As for the comma placement. I heard that argument before and in reality, that argument is just doing the same thing it’s arguing against, since there was no commas. So it becomes an argument from silence. After Christ’s finished work, the thief could have easily been with Him as He said.
I do agree we must stick with scripture, but to say all NDEs are false is a huge stretch. There have been millions of them with many similarities that line up with Paul’s urge to depart and be with be with the Lord. Many line up with your view in regards to God’s love and plan to save all, too. Feelings of love, peace, more real than this life. Many completely change their ways and lose fear of death. And there are many that are just outright undeniable because they see and know things that they couldn’t possibly know, with no brain activity.
Studies are showing these things are real and proving the existence of a conscience state after death. The question is, are millions of people just experiencing demonic deception? I’m not convinced of that, although I do believe some are misinterpreting what they see and others are just trying to sell a book. But most aren’t writing books.
I’m sorry, I don’t see your arguments lining up here. But again, I’m open to seeing your thoughts.
We can say that God is eternal but it’s not practical because eternal is not a biblical word. God is life. The very essence of God is life and God cannot die. God is immortal meaning He is not able to die. God gave us life but life in the flesh was never meant to last forever. It is a contradiction to say that God made us eternal unless He destroys both soul and body. If something can end it was never eternal. God is spirit and spirit is life but God gives and He takes away. Who are we to suggest that we own the life that God gave us? What did you do to be born? Nothing… What can you do to save your own life? Nothing… We belong to God, God doesn’t belong to us and God can bring back what He destroys.
The bible says that Christ was slain before the foundation of the world. There is no scripture that says that the finished work of Christ changed what happens to people when they die. Christ died until God resurrected Him from the dead but where did He go when He was dead? The finished work of Christ calls for there to be a resurrection for everyone the just and the unjust. What you say is easily possible is not supported by scripture but rather Christian tradition. Hebrews 11:13 talks about the prophets dying not having received the promise but wouldn’t going to be with the Lord be receiving the promise if that’s what supposedly happens according to you? In Ecclesiastes, it says that the body returns to the dust and the spirit returns to God who gave it. If you believe that there are scriptures that contradict that scripture then how can we believe any scripture? If people die (but not really die only pretend die) to immediately go to be with the Lord what is the purpose of the resurrection? Paul says that the resurrection is our only hope.
Why do you say I reject the possibility of spiritual senses, limbs, and so forth? You are asking me questions in a way that supports your theology that leans Christian heavily. Why can’t you believe what the scriptures say? You are adding non-scriptural themes to your arguments that would be impossible for me to answer unless I embraced the same line of thinking that you have. Those who rise in the first resurrection will rise in spiritual immortal glorified bodies. They don’t have to go through the second death judgment because they went through judgment during this age. What evidence are you using to suggest that consciousness continues after death? When people die, they die and anything else that happens beyond death is fanciful speculation. You are repeating the first lie from the devil; you shall not surely die when God has said that man shall surely die. Surely die? What is unclear about that? People do not like the concept of ceasing to live so they embrace fantasies because it makes them feel better.
Again, we do not have a soul, we ARE souls! Christ was changed AFTER his resurrection not while He was dead. When Christ was dead He didn’t exist until God resurrected Him back from the dead.
As for the comma placement. I heard that argument before and in reality, that argument is just doing the same thing it’s arguing against, since there was no commas. So it becomes an argument from silence. After Christ’s finished work, the thief could have easily been with Him as He said.
This is the second time you have used the statement, “after Christ’s finished work” but Christ isn’t finished. He has an entire race of humans to save and that hasn’t been accomplished yet. It is being accomplished and it will be accomplished. The point of the comma placement was to show that Christians added it to justify their doctrines but scripture must agree with scripture not contradict it. When Christ made the statement to the thief on the cross, He hadn’t even died yet but this is how totally false doctrines get started. The assumption here is that Christ went to “paradise” after He died but God resurrected Him back to earth taking him away from paradise? What is paradise? There is no scripture that says that the dead go to paradise and since Jesus was dying for the sins of the world, why would He be rewarded? He wouldn’t and that’s the point because DEATH is the punishment. He died and don’t Christians have to believe that Christ died and rose from the dead to be saved? Christians don’t even believe that He died, not really anyway.
I’m not saying that a person can’t have a near death experience but rather, I’m saying that what a person says on the cusp of death is probably not something you want to believe. When a person has a NDE, they are not dead they are near dead but near dead is not dead. The brain is still processing data and the brain while still alive and functioning can put together extreme images especially during shock or trauma. People embrace a lot of religious fantasy not having the slightest clue if it’s grounded in any scriptural truth or not. 2 Corinthians 5:8 is one of the most misinterpreted scriptures in the bible and many Christians believe that this is proof that believers go to be with the Lord immediately after death but there is a problem and it is am interpretation problem. Here is this verse in the KJV;
2 Corinthians 5:8 We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
Christians assume based on very bad interpretation and tradition that being absent from the body is to be present with the Lord but that is not what the scripture says. There is not “IS” and “TO BE” means in the future. If I died today and Christ returned 50,000 years from now, my next conscious thought would be rising to be with Christ in the resurrection. I wouldn’t have any recollection of anything while in dead in the grave where the dead know nothing. Yes Paul was willing to rather leave his life in his present body with all of his afflictions and infirmities to be (future) present with the Lord but he also knew that that would take place in the resurrection and not immediately after death.
If you have no brain activity you cannot see or know anything because the brain controls both.
Studies are showing these things are real and proving the existence of a conscience state after death. The question is, are millions of people just experiencing demonic deception? I’m not convinced of that, although I do believe some are misinterpreting what they see and others are just trying to sell a book. But most aren’t writing books.
What studies? You said, “The question is, are millions of people just experiencing demonic deception? I’m not convinced of that…” but in Revelation, we read that the devil deceives the whole world. Who is not included in the whole world? Yes there are many trying to sell books to make money but others just want to be a part of the religious propaganda engine in promoting Christianity’s dogmas.
any teaching on rapture?
I’ve commented on the rapture a few times but I haven’t written a paper on it. Here is one of my earlier comments to someone who asked about it.
The “rapture” is an entire Christian doctrine that includes believers being raptured into heaven at the second coming of Christ to avoid some period of time called the “tribulation”. The problem here is that Christianity creates entire doctrines based off of just one single word. The Greek word “harpazō” for which the word “rapture” is derived is properly defined as being “caught up” or “taken by force”. Christ returns with the clouds of heaven and the saints are “caught up” to meet the Lord in the air… It is nothing more than a grand welcoming of the saints meeting Christ in the air but they don’t go off to some place called heaven and they most certainly do not avoid tribulation. It is through much tribulation that we enter into the kingdom of God (Acts 14:22). The saints return to the earth where they reign with Christ for 1,000 years establishing the kingdom of God right here on earth. “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the EARTH (Revelation 5:10).”
Was wondering: An atheist by the name of Aron Ra has videos on YouTube trying to prove that the flood of Noah is all nonsense. In fact they (atheists) often use the flood story to point out that the bible is false. And I’ll admit, it’s the one I’ve had a difficult time believing a lot of times too. Just type in ARON RA DISPROVES NOAHS FLOOD on Google, and when you get a chance watch some of his videos and tell me your opinion when you get a chance.
Also, what’s your opinion about young earth creationism?
There is an argument that the flood of Noah was not global but regional instead and I’m kinda leaning on the side of it being regional. I myself have questions with a global flood although there are scriptures that seem to suggest that it was. It really just depends on how you interpret the scriptures and I’ve found that proponents of both sides will use scripture in a way that benefits what they believe. In regards to young earth creationism, I do not agree that the universe and all of creation began less than 6 or 7 thousand years ago. I believe there is enough evidence that suggests that creation took place over long periods of time.
And another question: What’s your opinion regarding ghosts, the paranormal, demonic possession, exorcism, etc? You think that these kinda things do occur?
I don’t think they occur as much as people think they do. If by ghost you mean body-less spirits that haunt houses I think that belief is based solely on superstition. The scriptures do not support the idea that a man can live outside of his own body. Once the spirit leaves the man he is a dead man. I don’t really get caught up too much with these kind of things because people just believe all kinds of fascinating things that really don’t have much validity to them. People are fascinated and fearful of the unknown. I do believe that a person can be possessed by demonic forces but I don’t think it happens as much these days because people don’t need demons to be or do evil things. We are bad enough all on our own. I haven’t studied exorcisms too much because of what I’ve read about the Catholic Church. Catholicism is loaded with superstition, tradition, and rituals that have nothing to do with God. Jesus and the disciples cast demons out of people so I guess that would qualify as an exorcism if we choose to use that word. I don’t spend a lot of time dwelling on these things honestly because I just don’t find them to be as essential as other areas.
Hey. Thanks for your reply. I just had one more question. While I do agree with you that yes, there are scriptures that say god intends to save all of humanity, there are a couple that, to me anyway, seem to teach otherwise. For example, there’s HEBREWS 10: 26-31 and MATTHEW 10: 28. While I don’t think these verses say that people will suffer in a place called hell for all eternity, it sounds like they support the teaching of annihilationism. That seems to be a belief that is becoming more popular these days. When you get a chance, was wondering if you could explain to me the meaning of these verses.
If there are scriptures that say God intends to save all of humanity and then other scriptures that say otherwise would seem to conclude that the scriptures contradict but I think we both know that’s not true. If the scriptures contradict then they aren’t worthy to be believed or trusted so the duty is on the believer to reconcile the truth within the entire counsel of God. Here is my attempt to do just that…
There is only one conclusion that can be the truth – either God is going to save all of humanity or God is going to save only a small portion of humanity while annihilating the majority of humanity. Do you know what it is called to exterminate entire populations of people? It is called genocide and genocide is classified as one of the worst of crimes in all of human history. Do you really believe that God is capable of this kind of behavior? Is Gods ways not higher than ours? This is the same God that has taught us to love our enemies, to bless those that curse us, to do good to them that hate us, and to pray for them that despitefully use and persecute us. Do you think that God is a hypocrite that He would destroy His enemies while telling use to love ours? If God SAYS that He intends to save all of humanity who or what can stop Him? Let’s look at what God says about saving all of humanity;
1 Timothy 2:3-4 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth.
Now, there are defectors that will bring up that the word “will” really only means “desire” and they are correct but who says that God can’t get what He desires? Is He not God? What can stop “GOD” from getting what He desires? I just recently dealt with this issue with another person and I don’t think they were able to follow me. There are some that are convinced that they must interpret scripture in ways that validates what they believe instead of studying the scriptures to shape what is already validated by the scriptures. There are plenty of scriptures that couldn’t be more clearer but these haters of truth will find clever ways to defend their heresies. I say this with shame because it blows my mind how so many people are turned off by the idea of God saving all sinners. Christianity believes that God only desires to save all of humanity but that God will not save all of humanity because Christianity doesn’t believe that God can get what He desires but the scriptures always harmonize with each other, they do not contradict.
Isaiah 46:9-11 Remember the former things of old, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things that are not yet done, Saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, And I will do all My pleasure, (DESIRE) Calling a bird of prey from the east, The man who executes My counsel, from a far country. Indeed I have spoken it; I will also bring it to pass.
I have purposed it; I will also do it.
How can there be any argument to this? God says He will have all men (humanity) to be saved so He has spoken it. It doesn’t matter if it is God’s will, desire, pleasure, wish, plan, idea, dream, etc…. When God speaks, it must come to pass;
Isaiah 55:11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I PLEASE, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.
The word “pleasure” in Isaiah 46:10 is translated from the Hebrew word “ḥēp̄eṣ” which is a noun and it is translated as pleasure, desire, delight, and purpose. This word comes from the Hebrew word “ḥāp̄ēṣ” which is translated as the word “please” in Isaiah 55:11. It is translated as delight, please, desire, will, and pleasure so both of these words essentially mean the same thing. There is no way to get around the fact that God will do whatever it is the He speaks and whatever it is that pleases Him.
So how do we reconcile these truths with Hebrews 10:26-31 and Matthew 10:28? Let’s take a look;
Hebrews 10:26-31 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. Anyone who has rejected Moses’ law dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. And again, “The Lord will judge His people.” It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
Where does it say that this person can’t or won’t be saved? The scripture says that there will be a “fearful” expectation of judgment and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries. It is important to be able to learn how to discern when the bible is using words as metaphors because these lessons have a spiritual application. Let’s first deal with judgment… Going through judgment is never fun but on the other side of judgment is correction, rehabilitation, and change. Christianity has taught us that God’s judgment is something to be terrified of in the sense that God is the boogeyman but God is a Father. I am a father and my judgment of my children will never surpass my love for them. When a child disobeys their parents, from their perspective, judgment is scary but a parent’s judgment should always be to correct and not to destroy them. Parents want to destroy the bad behavior but not them altogether and this is what is described by the fiery indignation which will devour the enemies. Paul talks about this in 1 Corinthians 3:9-15;
1 Corinthians 3:9-15 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.
There is obviously a spiritual application here so our work is likened as gold, silver, and precious stones or wood, hay, stubble. Notice that the first group of items are things that do not burn up when exposed to fire literally but rather it purifies them. When the second group of items are put through the fire they burn up and are destroyed. These items represent our work – how we live our lives, how we treat people, our thoughts and actions, our carnal nature, etc. Let’s say a person struggles with lying and this work is put through the fire of God’s judgment. The lying will eventually be figuratively burned out of the person and they will suffer loss. Think of this process like rehab for an alcoholic or someone addicted to drugs. It is not going to be fun but it is necessary for us to make the changes that God wants us to make just as it would be necessary for a drug addict to go to rehab. These scriptures do not teach annihilationism, they teach the need for judgment and this is what happens when the world is subjected to the judgment of God;
Isaiah 26:9 With my soul I have desired You in the night, Yes, by my spirit within me I will seek You early; For when Your judgments are in the earth, The inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.
Now Matthew 10:28;
And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.
The first issue is that this verse is not translated well. The most obvious is the word “hell” which should actually be “gehenna” which Christ used as a metaphor for judgment. The second issue is the word “soul” which is translated from the Greek word “psychē” which actually means life not soul. A soul is the combination of life and a body. 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). God formed the body then activated it with His life giving spirit THEN man became a living soul but when the spirit leaves the man, he is a dead soul. He no longer exists just like before God formed him. Jesus says, do not fear those who kill the body but why did Jesus say that? Jesus said that because He is talking to His disciples about the coming persecution that they will face from following Him. Man can kill your body but they cannot kill your life (they killed the body of Jesus but His life was in the hands of God and God raised Him from the dead). Jesus told them to fear Him who is able to DESTROY (not kill) both life and body in “gehenna”. Notice that God doesn’t kill life but rather He is able to “destroy” it and this is an important difference. This is not to say that God isn’t able to kill both life and body but He won’t because that against the nature of God. The idea of killing something is to put an end to it forever but whatever is destroyed can also be rebuilt or restored. If God destroys, it is always to improve or make better and not to just destroy with no redeeming purpose. God would never annihilate what He has created. God destroys, then He God rebuilds so fear Him who holds the power over your life (not just your body) in His hands.
I do agree that annihilation is becoming a more popular teaching because it is far less cruel and absurd than the teaching of an eternal hell but the doctrine itself has been around for centuries. While it is far better than the doctrine of hell, I still believe it to be a doctrine that robs God of all the glory. In 1 Corinthians 15:28, we are told that God will be all in all and I believe that to be true without any exegesis, however, exegesis is necessary because some claim that all doesn’t always mean all. It is actually true but I already know that the Greek word “pas” doesn’t always mean “all as in everyone single person” in every single context but it is the context that will dictate the meaning of the “all” because the Greek word “pas” can mean “all” as in everyone such “all have sinned”. There is no contention with this all meaning every single person and rightfully so but Christians seem to only be concerned about “all” not really meaning “all as in everyone” when it has to do with salvation. That has always boggled my mind and the only thing that seems to make sense to me is that Christians place more value on a salvation that is exclusive instead of inclusive. Heaven to them will not be as good if God opens the door for everyone because they supposedly gave up sin to follow Christ so why should God save the heathen? This is the beginning of a works based salvation and that is exactly what Christianity is. The sinner must first be presented with the Christian version of the gospel, then the sinner has to accept that version, then the sinner must adopt certain Christian rituals afterwards such as going to church, paying tithes, etc.). These are some of the things that define what a Christian is but I don’t put myself under such requirements. God should save the heathen because He saves us who were once heathens as well. Without Christ we are all heathens. The doctrine of annihilation contradicts so many other scriptures. I can’t go into them here because it would be pages of information but I have gotten several comments about this topic so maybe it’s time I write a paper on it. Until then I hope I was able to explain those scriptures in a way that was helpful for you.
All the best!
You mentioned in the 2nd reply that “most people” will resurrect to an age of judgment more specifically the ones that are persecuted during this life… my question is how does one define persecuted? Can we know if we will resurrect to life or judgment? Does it really matter? Is it not all predestined anyway? …thanks so much for all that you’ve done, your website has really blessed me, for the last 2yrs and 8months I’ve been trying to reconcile blatant contradictions in what the church taught me. My life experiences, and what the Bible says. You’ve really confirmed alot of thoughts I’ve had regarding these subjects
The ones that are persecuted in this life for Christ’s sake and overcome the world will avoid the lake of fire second death judgment. These are the elect but it is the majority of humanity’s population that will suffer the judgment of the lake of fire second death. Persecution in come in a variety of forms. People aren’t getting flogged, crucified, or burned at the stake like people did centuries ago. Persecution would be being cast out of the church for questioning the pastor. It could be anything that forces someone to learn or grow. I don’t know if there is a definitive way to know whether someone will rise to life or judgment but of course it matters. Rising to life in the first resurrection is the beginning of God’s administration and there is no higher calling than to be a savior. If you are asking me if God does the choosing then the answer is yes because you cannot choose God. Nobody can choose God anymore than we can choose our parents. God predestined you to be born and there was nothing you could do about it. God causes whatever He chooses to cause to make His will come to pass.