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Steven3
Sep 16th 2007, 03:03 PM
Hi David :)

Jeff,
If the intent of your post is to discuss the timing of the rapture, then you've come to the right place here at ETC.

If the intent of your post is to discuss soul-sleep, then that discussion will need to be moved over to the World Religions (http://bibleforums.org/forumdisplay.php?f=46) Forum, per our board rules (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=59397) on that topic in section IV.

Not in any way disagreeing with your comment, but, and maybe I'm not reading carefully, I cannot see "soul sleep" specifically mentioned on that page, so presumably it would be an area for exercising discretion.

I'll make no bones about the fact that I myself am a fully paid up "soul sleeper" ;) I was brought up at a CofE school, our local Alpha Course leader believes that death is sleep and the hope is resurrection, and he shares the belief of many in the Church of England including the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and the Bishop of Durham A.T. Wright - namely that God alone has immortality (1Tim 6:16), that death is sleep (Luke 8:52 Psalm 6:5 etc), till, in the age to come, eternal life. (1Co15:23).

Wheras most world religions - Hindu, Buddhist, Islam, Sikhism, believe in either the immortality of the soul/spirit (nafs or ruh in Arabic, atma in Sanskrit),

Fair enough if "soul sleep" (a misnoma, Ezekiel 13:9, but let's not be pedantic) is counted a world religion, by all means move it, no skin off my nose. The possible downside might be, however, that if it is based in Biblical exegesis and if it is believed by a broad range of Christians, then to do so might serve to give credence to other ideas in World Religions which are not necessarily so well supported in the Bible.

Just a small suggestion, not a definite opinion, and happy either way ;)
God bless all, and thanks for this wonderful board
Steven

David Taylor
Sep 16th 2007, 04:01 PM
"Soul Sleep" is an "unorthodox teaching" and "specific doctrine" of both #1 & #2 below; and not a Mainstream Protestant teaching. It may be discussed here in WR, not in the
main board Protestant Christian forums.

I. Board Policy

This board is for an exploration of the mainstream Christian Protestant faith, and not the faith of other religions.

V. Specific Rules

Unorthodox teachings or discussing specific doctrines of ANY of these religions will be moved to the "World Religions" Forum:
Teachings of ANY of these religions and discussion of specific doctrines may be discussed only in the World Religions forum
in the interest of seeking factual representation and refuting any doctrinal differences from mainstream Protestantism:

1. Seventh Day Adventist (SDA)
2. Jehovah's Witnesses (JW)

jujubea
Sep 16th 2007, 08:59 PM
I'll make no bones about the fact that I myself am a fully paid up "soul sleeper" ;) I was brought up at a CofE school, our local Alpha Course leader believes that death is sleep and the hope is resurrection, and he shares the belief of many in the Church of England including the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and the Bishop of Durham A.T. Wright - namely that God alone has immortality (1Tim 6:16), that death is sleep (Luke 8:52 Psalm 6:5 etc), till, in the age to come, eternal life. (1Co15:23). Steven

Wow, You've opened my eyes to some new thoughts, namely that such high ranking church officials do not hold to the idea of everyone having an immortal soul. In light of this you would think that more people would have that belief.

Ah, well, here on this board it automatically lumps you in as one of Jehovah's Witnesses. Not a bad place to be IMHO.

Toolman
Sep 18th 2007, 05:15 PM
and he shares the belief of many in the Church of England including the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and the Bishop of Durham A.T. Wright

As well as well known and respected evangelical anglican John Stott.


and the hope is resurrection

This, in my mind, has always given a powerful support to the idea of soul sleep. It puts much more of an emphasis on the hope of the resurrection, than does the idea of an ethereal existence between death and resurrection.

Not fully convinced yet but it is a powerful point.

jujubea
Sep 19th 2007, 09:55 PM
As well as well known and respected evangelical anglican John Stott.



This, in my mind, has always given a powerful support to the idea of soul sleep. It puts much more of an emphasis on the hope of the resurrection, than does the idea of an ethereal existence between death and resurrection.

Not fully convinced yet but it is a powerful point.

To me the deciding factor is what the scriptures say, rather than what any religious leader believes. I am just surprised that more people don't understand it. From start to finish the scriptures are pretty clear, the consequence of sin is death. This is what God told Adam at the outset. If this wasn't the punishment, it would be unrighteous on God's part to set out false rules and parameters. (Romans 5:12, 6:23; Gen.2:17)

The very first lie propagated by Satan was "YOU positively will not die." (Gen. 3:4) He has been spreading it in various different forms ever since.

What the teaching of the immortal soul does is remove the need of the resurrection. If all good people go to heaven and all bad go to hell, what is the need of a resurrection?

Jesus remained dead for the better part of three days. Then he was resurrected, brought back to life. This took place so that all people have the opportunity to be brought back to life should they die. However if they are in actuallity still alive, but in a different form, why do they need to be resurrected?

Hosea 13:14 "I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction:"

1Cor.15:56,57 "The sting producing death is sin, but the power for sin is the Law. But thanks to God, for he gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!"

David Taylor
Sep 21st 2007, 06:42 PM
Jesus remained dead for the better part of three days. Then he was resurrected, brought back to life.

Jesus' body, was dead (very much asleep) for the better part of three days.

Jesus' spirit, however, was not dead, and it returned into the hands of the Father at the death of His body on the Cross.

The resurrection is the final triumph over sin, when the body/spirit unit is glorified and made immortal, and incorruptible.

The resurrection is our ultimate hope, but our present hope until that time, is the assurance that noone, thing, person, grave, or even death, can separate us from our Lord and Saviour.

Gary Rake
Sep 22nd 2007, 09:41 PM
For the purposes of clarification, would someone who purports "soul sleep" or whatever the correct terminology is, please define it in summary form, possibly with a quick couple of verses substantiating the thought?

I've only had the briefest exposure to it and would like to know clearly what is being discussed before I comment, possibly with a foot in my mouth.

Blessings,
Gary

Toolman
Sep 23rd 2007, 09:56 PM
For the purposes of clarification, would someone who purports "soul sleep" or whatever the correct terminology is, please define it in summary form, possibly with a quick couple of verses substantiating the thought?

I've only had the briefest exposure to it and would like to know clearly what is being discussed before I comment, possibly with a foot in my mouth.

Blessings,
Gary

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soul_sleep

jujubea
Sep 25th 2007, 02:37 AM
Jesus' body, was dead (very much asleep) for the better part of three days.

Jesus' spirit, however, was not dead, and it returned into the hands of the Father at the death of His body on the Cross.

The resurrection is the final triumph over sin, when the body/spirit unit is glorified and made immortal, and incorruptible.

The resurrection is our ultimate hope, but our present hope until that time, is the assurance that noone, thing, person, grave, or even death, can separate us from our Lord and Saviour.


The life force or spirit is within every cell of a person's body. For this reason severed appendages can be reattached within certain time limits. The life force is still within those cells. When the life force or spirit is no longer in the cells, the cells die, and of course reattachment is no longer possible.


When a person dies there is a rather long process. Depending on the manner of death, the heart stops, activity within the major organs cease, brain function comes to an end, and last but not least the very cells of the body die.


When a person donates organs for transplant, the organs are kept alive. They still have the spirit or life force in them. If they did not, transplants would be impossible.


God is the source of life. As such, when a person dies, the life force within can be said to “go back to God”, in that, he alone has the power to restore it. It was in this sense that Jesus spirit went back to God.


This life force or spirit is not an intelligence, it is does not have thought. It is more like an electrical charge. That is why an electrical charge can at times bring life back to a person who's heart has stopped.



Prior to Jesus death, there was no hope of going to heaven. He was the first to come from heaven, and he had to prepare a way for his disciples in order that they too could go to heaven.

John 3:13 “Moreover, no man has ascended into heaven but he that descended from heaven, the Son of man.”

John 14:2,3 “In the house of my Father there are many abodes. Otherwise, I would have told YOU, because I am going my way to prepare a place for YOU. 3 Also, if I go my way and prepare a place for YOU, I am coming again and will receive YOU home to myself, that where I am YOU also may be.”


Thousands upon thousands of people died prior to Jesus ransom sacrifice. These ones had no hope of going to heaven. Their spirit or life force left them. It did not actually go anywhere. Like a flame when blown out does not actually go anywhere, it is just gone. Their hope is for the resurrection, a future event.


Speaking of the resurrection Paul said:


1Corinthians 15:50 However, this I say, brothers, that flesh and blood cannot inherit God’s kingdom, neither does corruption inherit incorruption. 51Look! I tell YOU a sacred secret: We shall not all fall asleep [in death], but we shall all be changed,


Indeed those who were dead had to await the time of the resurrection. Until that time they were “asleep in death.”. They are not in heaven, they are not in hell, they exist only in God's memory. God promises to bring them back to life.


The resurrection is a uniting of body and spirit the same as Adam's creation was. The body is given the life force. If there was a separate intelligence that separated from the body at death, we would be immortal already. But the scriptures are clear, we are not.

jujubea
Sep 29th 2007, 06:16 AM
For the purposes of clarification, would someone who purports "soul sleep" or whatever the correct terminology is, please define it in summary form, possibly with a quick couple of verses substantiating the thought?

I've only had the briefest exposure to it and would like to know clearly what is being discussed before I comment, possibly with a foot in my mouth.

Blessings,
Gary

Hi Gary; Here are a few.

Why we die.
Gen.2:17 “But as for the tree of the knowledge of good and bad you must not eat from it, for in the day you eat from it you will positively die.”

Rom. 5:12, 17, 19: “Through one man [Adam] sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned—. ... By the trespass of the one man death ruled as king ... Through the disobedience of the one man many were constituted sinners.”

Romans 6:23 “For the wages sin pays is death, but the gift God gives is everlasting life by Christ Jesus our Lord.”

1Cor. 15:22: “In Adam all are dying.”

Where are the dead?

Gen. 3:19: “In the sweat of your face you will eat bread until you return to the ground, for out of it you were taken. For dust you are and to dust you will return.”

Eccl. 9:10: “All that your hand finds to do, do with your very power, for there is no work nor devising nor knowledge nor wisdom in Sheol [“the grave,” KJ, ], the place to which you are going.”

What is the condition of the dead?

Eccl. 9:5: “The living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all.”

Ps. 146:4: “His spirit goes out, he goes back to his ground; in that day his thoughts do perish.”

John 11:11-14: “‘Lazarus our friend has gone to rest, but I am journeying there to awaken him from sleep.’ ... Jesus said to them outspokenly: ‘Lazarus has died.’”

Psalm 13:3 “Do look [upon me]; answer me, O Jehovah my God. Do make my eyes shine, that I may not fall asleep in death.”


What God has done to correct.


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



John 3:16 “For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son, in order that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life.


Rev.21:4 “And he will wipe out every tear from their eyes, and death will be no more, neither will mourning nor outcry nor pain be anymore. The former things have passed away.”

enarchay
Oct 4th 2007, 01:47 AM
This, in my mind, has always given a powerful support to the idea of soul sleep. It puts much more of an emphasis on the hope of the resurrection, than does the idea of an ethereal existence between death and resurrection.Couldn't have said it better myself. In fact, it sounds like something I've said before.

The emphasis is (or definitely should be) resurrection, so whether you believe in an intermediate state or not is not really important. The problem is, too many preach so much about "going to Heaven," as if it was our ultimate hope, that resurrection is forgotten completely. For example, I was raised believing that the Christian hope is "to go to Heaven." But guess what? I barely knew or didn't even know at all what resurrection was until I started reading my Bible. This is a problem that needs to be fixed; I hope we can all agree on that point.

I'll close my post with N.T. Wright's words of wisdom:

"Heaven is important but it's not the end of the world: in the mainstream Christian tradition until the Platonists corrupted it, the ultimate destination is THE NEW HEAVENS AND THE NEW EARTH, which will involve an ultimate resurrection (bodily, of course) for God's people (in some versions, for all people).

The way the phrase 'heaven and hell' are used today implies you go straight to one or the other, ignoring the solid biblical testimony to an ultimate new creation in which heaven and earth are brought together in a great act of renewal (for those who want it, check out Ephesians 1.10, Revelation 21 and 22, Romans 8.18-27 and 1 Corinthians 15.20-28 -- though once you see this theme it's there everywhere)" (Wright, "Neither is The Final Destination (http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/onfaith/nicholas_t_wright/2007/06/neither_is_the_final_destinati.html)").

enarchay
Oct 4th 2007, 01:59 AM
To me the deciding factor is what the scriptures say, rather than what any religious leader believes.

Yes. However, many people automatically associate "soul sleep" oriented doctrines with cults, ignorant of the other respectable scholars and evangelicals that subscribe also with "soul sleep" oriented doctrines. For one who believes something remotely close to a doctrine of "soul sleep" (and I put it in quotation marks because it really is a poor title to describe the doctrine Steven and I advocate) it is good to have respectable scholars and evangelicals on your side.


What the teaching of the immortal soul does is remove the need of the resurrection.I see what you are trying to say, but I don't believe man needs to have an "immortal soul" to enter some form of a conscious intermediate state after death. If there is a conscious intermediate state, the soul would not go there. But if there is an intermediate state, who cares what "part" of the human goes there?

enarchay
Oct 4th 2007, 02:14 AM
Jesus' body, was dead (very much asleep) for the better part of three days.

Jesus' nephesh/psyche, "soul," was in sheol/hades.
"Because thou wilt not leave my soul [psychen] in hell [hadou], neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption" (Act 2:27).


Jesus' spirit, however, was not dead, and it returned into the hands of the Father at the death of His body on the Cross.The ruach/pnuema, when describing the breath of life that animates the human body (cf. Gen 2:7), is not conscious.
"Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit [ruach] shall return unto God who gave it. Vanity of vanities, saith the preacher; all is vanity" (Ecc 12:7-8).

"And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit. And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep" (Act 7:60).
N.T. Wright comments, "Death means that the body returns to the dust, and the breath to God who gave it; meaning not that an immortal part of the person goes to live with God, but that the God who breathed life's breath into human nostrils in the first place will simply withdraw it into his own possession" (The Resurrection of The Son of God, Wright 98-99).


The resurrection is our ultimate hope, but our present hope until that time, is the assurance that noone, thing, person, grave, or even death, can separate us from our Lord and Saviour.It shouldn't be our "present hope." Our present hope should be that the God that rose Jesus, the Messiah, from the dead, so that he was not abandoned to the grave or to corruption, will one day raise us to the same glory. We await, as Paul says, the "manifestation of the sons of God" (Rom 8:19) and the "the redemption of our body" (Rom 8:23).

brakelite
Oct 9th 2007, 12:24 AM
Saw this thread for the first time and thought I would add my agreement to those advocates of soul-sleep.
Two points I would like to add. Nowhere did Jesus say "I am looking forward to the day you die so we can be reunited in heaven".
He did say, 2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

He also said, 39 And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.
40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.

Second point, which has been mentioned but deserves repeating, we are notm immortal. How do I know this?
1Ti 6:16 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.

Immortality is something we must seek for, it is not something we have naturally.
Ro 2:7 To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honour and immortality, eternal life:


PS Just because a certain belief is not mainstream, does not make it necessarily wrong. When was the last time you noticed that the 'majority' was right in everything?
My Bible tells me that the church that is waiting patiently and is watching diligently for Jesus to return is a 'remnant'. Mainstream? I dont think so.

jujubea
Oct 12th 2007, 12:49 AM
Yes. However, many people automatically associate "soul sleep" oriented doctrines with cults, ignorant of the other respectable scholars and evangelicals that subscribe also with "soul sleep" oriented doctrines. For one who believes something remotely close to a doctrine of "soul sleep" (and I put it in quotation marks because it really is a poor title to describe the doctrine Steven and I advocate) it is good to have respectable scholars and evangelicals on your side.

I've been meaning to get back to this thread for a while, been too side tracked with others. You are right Enarchay, soul sleep is not a good term for it. To be honest I had not heard it being refered to that until discussions on this site.


I see what you are trying to say, but I don't believe man needs to have an "immortal soul" to enter some form of a conscious intermediate state after death. If there is a conscious intermediate state, the soul would not go there. But if there is an intermediate state, who cares what "part" of the human goes there?

I suppose the point I am trying to make is that there is no intermediate state. "For the living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all.."(Eccl.9:5)

When God said the penalty was death he was telling the truth. If there was a consious intermediate state, it would prove God a liar and Satan the truthful one.

enarchay
Oct 13th 2007, 07:45 PM
I suppose the point I am trying to make is that there is no intermediate state. "For the living are conscious that they will die; but as for the dead, they are conscious of nothing at all.."(Eccl.9:5)

When God said the penalty was death he was telling the truth. If there was a consious intermediate state, it would prove God a liar and Satan the truthful one.

On the other hand, there does seem to be marginal support for a conscious intermediate state. Basically just three verses.
"We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord" (2Co 5:8).
"For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better" (Php 1:23).
"Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him" (1Th 5:10).Paul was a Hellenistic Jew, an ex-Pharisee. Most Hellenistic Jews and Pharisees believed in a conscious intermediate state (cf. Wisdom of Solomon). In addition, Paul was facing extreme persecution. So can we really blame him for believing in a conscious intermediate state?

Steven3
Oct 14th 2007, 02:36 AM
Hi E :)
On the other hand, there does seem to be marginal support for a conscious intermediate state. Basically just three verses.
"We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord" (2Co 5:8).
"For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better" (Php 1:23).
"Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him" (1Th 5:10).Paul was a Hellenistic Jew, an ex-Pharisee. Most Hellenistic Jews and Pharisees believed in a conscious intermediate state (cf. Wisdom of Solomon). In addition, Paul was facing extreme persecution. So can we really blame him for believing in a conscious intermediate state?

Sure, we wouldn't "blame" Paul if he did, and it's probably true that the considerable majority of Jews in the Second Temple period did believe in a conscious or semi-conscious blessed state between death and resurrection. The parody of one Jewish view on Abraham's bosom in Luke 16 shows that some believed in more than just a semi-conscious state.

And it's assumable that the Sadducees belived only in the immortal soul, since no religion in mankind's history believes in one's own annihilation. For Sadducees, or any other group with no resurrection, the immortal soul was the only hope.

But, we need to compare those two verses of Paul (not the 3rd, that says nothing about any intermediate state or status since Paul has just talked about the resurrection in the previous chapter, 1Thess4), plus Christ's comment on Abraham that the patriarchs live "to God", with clearly conscious-soul statements such as Wisdom of Solomon, and with books such as Ecclesiastes and Sirach.

www.ccel.org/bible/kjv-apoc/Wisdom/index.html (http://www.ccel.org/bible/kjv-apoc/Wisdom/index.html)
Wis. Sol. 1:15
3:4
4:1
8:13, 17
15:3

www.ccel.org/bible/brenton/MaccabeesIV/index.html (http://www.ccel.org/bible/brenton/MaccabeesIV/index.html)
IV Maccabees
9:8, 22
10:15
13:17
14:5
15:2
16:13
17:5, 18
18:23


Now compare those refs with the two statements from Paul which might provide hope that Paul allowed consciousness in the intermediate state.

The Greek (as the English) contrasts two verbal states - absence and presence: ευδοκουμεν (willing) μαλλον (rather) εκδημησαι εκ του σωματος (to be absent from the body) και (and) ενδημησαι προς τον κυριον (to be present pros the Lord)

What this does is contrast two options, but what it doesn't do is either equate the two options:
willing rather to be absent from the US which is to be in Europe.

nor does it have a time reference
willing rather to be absent from the US and immediately to be in Europe.

Now of course most people reading Paul's words will assume that "and" means "which is", or implies "immediately", I think even our good friend the usually infallibly mortalist Bishop of Durham has read into the Greek here, but nevertheless that remains an assumption, which Paul himself undermines two verses later.

Let's assume however that the assumption is correct and Paul meant "immediately" even though he failed to write it. Would present pros the Lord itself imply a conscious state rather than a state of grace or being a name in a Book? Initial reaction is that it probably would, but seeing as the "which is" and "immediately" are ruled out by 2Co5:10, I haven't made the effort to see how pros the Lord is used elsewhere in the NT.


The Philippians verse is a far stronger one to build ideas of an intermediate grace-state upon, for three reasons.

συνεχομαι δε εκ των δυο την επιθυμιαν εχων εις το αναλυσαι και συν χριστω ειναι πολλω μαλλον κρεισσον

1. it presents the two states - life and death, as contrasted options, "betwixt two" εκ των δυο which 2Co5:8 doesn't.

2. unlike 2Co5:8 it isn't immediately preceded and followed by verses talking about the resurrection of the body and judgment at the return of Christ

3. it has "with Christ" συν χριστω SUN CRISTWi, not pros as 2Co5:8, which is totally unambiguous. That can only mean "with"

So really of those 3 verses, there's one-and-a-half to hang the hope of consciousness of any kind in death on (disregarding all the OT of course). And even in Phil, Paul goes on to say "if by any means I may attain to the resurrection of the dead" so it is arguable that his hope to with "with Christ" is telescoped, to the next waking moment, and that ch2 doesn't contradict ch3.

The bottom line however is that people just will not accept the idea of being dead between death and resurrection. Just look at the history of Christianity - even when someone discovers that the Bible doesn't teach any conscious intermediate state by someone as august as Martin Luther, you won't find a single Lutheran church that has retained that teaching. Even the fact that we're here in "World Religions" subforum discussing something with hundreds if not thousands of Bible verses in support, is evidence of the unnacceptability of verses like Gen3:3,19 to the western Christian mind, or perhaps just the human mind. Any church that accepts verses like Ps6:5 will be stigmatized as a cult, and any OT book (such as Ecclesiastes) which is too blatant about the subject is discounted as "the work of a man without faith" (sic) etc.

Sorry - back to the question - do those 2 verses from Paul share the same conscious state language as Wisdom and IV Maccabees? Anyone can look up the verses above and compare.


Personally I see a difference. If Paul said what these books say, we wouldn't need to go to these books. And to me it reads that Phil2 and Phil3 are referring to the same hope - "if by any means I might attain" sounds fairly all or nothing.
God bless
Steven

enarchay
Oct 14th 2007, 02:50 AM
And it's assumable that the Sadducees belived only in the immortal soul, since no religion in mankind's history believes in one's own annihilation. For Sadducees, or any other group with no resurrection, the immortal soul was the only hope.

I'm not so sure. N.T. Wright provides evidence the Sadducees denied not only resurrection, but also life after death. (Just go buy The Resurrection of the Son of God so I don't have to keep telling you about it :idea:).


But, we need to compare those two verses of Paul (not the 3rd, that says nothing about any intermediate state or status since Paul has just talked about the resurrection in the previous chapter, 1Thess4)

The third is the most explicit statement about an intermediate state. Paul is of the opinion that whether wake (alive) or sleep (dead), the Christian lives together with God (whatever that is supposed to mean).



What this does is contrast two options, but what it doesn't do is either equate the two options:
willing rather to be absent from the US which is to be in Europe.


Yes, but you cannot ignore the implications of the verse. Paul makes it clear one is away from the Lord while he is alive, then makes the statement he is willing to be both away from the body and with the Lord, with the latter statement implying one is present with the Lord at death.


Would present pros the Lord itself imply a conscious state rather than a state of grace or being a name in a Book?

Not sure. Paul probably thought so.


So really of those 3 verses, there's one-and-a-half to hang the hope of consciousness of any kind in death on (disregarding all the OT of course). And even in Phil, Paul goes on to say "if by any means I may attain to the resurrection of the dead" so it is arguable that his hope to with "with Christ" is telescoped, to the next waking moment, and that ch2 doesn't contradict ch3.

Could be the case.


The bottom line however is that people just will not accept the idea of being dead between death and resurrection. Just look at the history of Christianity - even when someone discovers that the Bible doesn't teach any conscious intermediate state by someone as august as Martin Luther, you won't find a single Lutheran church that has retained that teaching.

Really? Can you show me some quotes by Luther? Never knew that. If memory serves me, Wright said there were also debates amongst the Calvinists. If you could provide some information on these subjects it would be much appreciated.

In any case, it seems Plato won his way into Christianity.


Sorry - back to the question - do those 2 verses from Paul share the same conscious state language as Wisdom and IV Maccabees? Anyone can look up the verses above and compare.

I'm not sure. But I'm learning to appreciate the Wisdom of Solomon more and more. I'm not sure if the author's beliefs about the afterlife is enough of a reason to discount him as I thought before.



Personally I see a difference. If Paul said what these books say, we wouldn't need to go to these books. And to me it reads that Phil2 and Phil3 are referring to the same hope - "if by any means I might attain" sounds fairly all or nothing.

The point is, there is barely no evidence for a conscious intermediate state. That is enough of a reason, for me; to adhere to a "soul sleep" oriented doctrine.

Steven3
Oct 14th 2007, 03:47 AM
Hey E :)
I'm not so sure. N.T. Wright provides evidence the Sadducees denied not only resurrection, but also life after death. (Just go buy The Resurrection of the Son of God so I don't have to keep telling you about it :idea:).I have it, but not here. I can't see how anyone can say anything about them seeing as we don't have any source material.


Yes, but you cannot ignore the implications of the verse. Paul makes it clear one is away from the Lord while he is alive, then makes the statement he is willing to be both away from the body and with the Lord, with the latter statement implying one is present with the Lord at death.I have no theological problem, I accept it in Phil2, but can ignore it here in 2Co5:8, because it's circular reasoning - it must be immediate, therefore it's immediate, etc. This verse only means death is "present pros the Lord" if we think Paul has dropped the ball of the verses before and after about not being naked. There's something else - as to whether "in the body" refers to deeds done or judgment received.


Really? Can you show me some quotes by Luther? Never knew that. There's the famous "Dr Martin, wake up" quote to start with.
This is a randomly Googled ref http://www.christiantrumpetsounding.com/soul.htm
dozens more.


In any case, it seems Plato won his way into Christianity.Well the Jews didn't need Plato, since they'd been denying death since the Golden Calf. Jews are the same as anyone else, why would they accept Gen3:3 without a struggle?


The point is, there is barely no evidence for a conscious intermediate state. That is enough of a reason, for me; to adhere to a "soul sleep" oriented doctrine.Yes, but there's another issue - consistency in Paul's teaching. I'm already way out there in allowing that Paul did/wrote all sorts of hairy things. But 2Co5:8 is really not in any hint of its meaning allowing any consciousness in death - I think N.T. Wright is being a little deferential to the heaven-going element in the CofE on this one. This is still a very hot potato in the Anglican church. Almost every Anglican vicar I've heard of having a view doesn't dare to break the news to his congregation. The same is true with Methodists and United Reformed. Apart from anything else it's common practice (and probably correctly) to ask the family what the deceased believed in at a CofE funeral - and if there were strong views of heaven going or "soul sleep" then that's what's in the funeral. I know a Methodist pastor in India who sent two people off to two different destinations in the same day: one up to heaven, one to sleep till the resurrection. In practice the Bible doesn't have the last word. We do.
God bless
Steven

enarchay
Oct 14th 2007, 06:28 AM
Yes, but there's another issue - consistency in Paul's teaching.

Why is this an issue? What do you mean?


This is still a very hot potato in the Anglican church. Almost every Anglican vicar I've heard of having a view doesn't dare to break the news to his congregation.

Is it so wrong to not want to shatter the things people feel comforted to believe? I don't expect preachers to tell everyone, "Guess what! You're not going to Heaven when you die!," but I hope they can place so much of an emphasis on resurrection that maybe people will forget about the afterlife.


The same is true with Methodists and United Reformed. Apart from anything else it's common practice (and probably correctly) to ask the family what the deceased believed in at a CofE funeral - and if there were strong views of heaven going or "soul sleep" then that's what's in the funeral. I know a Methodist pastor in India who sent two people off to two different destinations in the same day: one up to heaven, one to sleep till the resurrection. In practice the Bible doesn't have the last word. We do.

Pretty funny about the "two different destinations."

brakelite
Oct 14th 2007, 06:36 AM
Hi E :)

Sure, we wouldn't "blame" Paul if he did, and it's probably true that the considerable majority of Jews in the Second Temple period did believe in a conscious or semi-conscious blessed state between death and resurrection. The parody of one Jewish view on Abraham's bosom in Luke 16 shows that some believed in more than just a semi-conscious state.

And it's assumable that the Sadducees belived only in the immortal soul, since no religion in mankind's history believes in one's own annihilation. For Sadducees, or any other group with no resurrection, the immortal soul was the only hope.

But, we need to compare those two verses of Paul (not the 3rd, that says nothing about any intermediate state or status since Paul has just talked about the resurrection in the previous chapter, 1Thess4), plus Christ's comment on Abraham that the patriarchs live "to God", with clearly conscious-soul statements such as Wisdom of Solomon, and with books such as Ecclesiastes and Sirach.

www.ccel.org/bible/kjv-apoc/Wisdom/index.html (http://www.ccel.org/bible/kjv-apoc/Wisdom/index.html)
Wis. Sol. 1:15
3:4
4:1
8:13, 17
15:3

www.ccel.org/bible/brenton/MaccabeesIV/index.html (http://www.ccel.org/bible/brenton/MaccabeesIV/index.html)
IV Maccabees
9:8, 22
10:15
13:17
14:5
15:2
16:13
17:5, 18
18:23


Now compare those refs with the two statements from Paul which might provide hope that Paul allowed consciousness in the intermediate state.

The Greek (as the English) contrasts two verbal states - absence and presence: ευδοκουμεν (willing) μαλλον (rather) εκδημησαι εκ του σωματος (to be absent from the body) και (and) ενδημησαι προς τον κυριον (to be present pros the Lord)

What this does is contrast two options, but what it doesn't do is either equate the two options:
willing rather to be absent from the US which is to be in Europe.

nor does it have a time reference
willing rather to be absent from the US and immediately to be in Europe.

Now of course most people reading Paul's words will assume that "and" means "which is", or implies "immediately", I think even our good friend the usually infallibly mortalist Bishop of Durham has read into the Greek here, but nevertheless that remains an assumption, which Paul himself undermines two verses later.

Let's assume however that the assumption is correct and Paul meant "immediately" even though he failed to write it. Would present pros the Lord itself imply a conscious state rather than a state of grace or being a name in a Book? Initial reaction is that it probably would, but seeing as the "which is" and "immediately" are ruled out by 2Co5:10, I haven't made the effort to see how pros the Lord is used elsewhere in the NT.


The Philippians verse is a far stronger one to build ideas of an intermediate grace-state upon, for three reasons.

συνεχομαι δε εκ των δυο την επιθυμιαν εχων εις το αναλυσαι και συν χριστω ειναι πολλω μαλλον κρεισσον

1. it presents the two states - life and death, as contrasted options, "betwixt two" εκ των δυο which 2Co5:8 doesn't.

2. unlike 2Co5:8 it isn't immediately preceded and followed by verses talking about the resurrection of the body and judgment at the return of Christ

3. it has "with Christ" συν χριστω SUN CRISTWi, not pros as 2Co5:8, which is totally unambiguous. That can only mean "with"

So really of those 3 verses, there's one-and-a-half to hang the hope of consciousness of any kind in death on (disregarding all the OT of course). And even in Phil, Paul goes on to say "if by any means I may attain to the resurrection of the dead" so it is arguable that his hope to with "with Christ" is telescoped, to the next waking moment, and that ch2 doesn't contradict ch3.

The bottom line however is that people just will not accept the idea of being dead between death and resurrection. Just look at the history of Christianity - even when someone discovers that the Bible doesn't teach any conscious intermediate state by someone as august as Martin Luther, you won't find a single Lutheran church that has retained that teaching. Even the fact that we're here in "World Religions" subforum discussing something with hundreds if not thousands of Bible verses in support, is evidence of the unnacceptability of verses like Gen3:3,19 to the western Christian mind, or perhaps just the human mind. Any church that accepts verses like Ps6:5 will be stigmatized as a cult, and any OT book (such as Ecclesiastes) which is too blatant about the subject is discounted as "the work of a man without faith" (sic) etc.

Sorry - back to the question - do those 2 verses from Paul share the same conscious state language as Wisdom and IV Maccabees? Anyone can look up the verses above and compare.


Personally I see a difference. If Paul said what these books say, we wouldn't need to go to these books. And to me it reads that Phil2 and Phil3 are referring to the same hope - "if by any means I might attain" sounds fairly all or nothing.
God bless
Steven

Greetings. Excellent to see a reasoned intellectual objective study of this most contraversial topic, and coming to the only plausible conclusion.
Our only hope, and the apostles only hope, was for the ressurection.And when will this take place?
At the last day, at the second coming of Jesus.
B.

Wintermute
Nov 18th 2007, 11:38 PM
For the purposes of clarification, would someone who purports "soul sleep" or whatever the correct terminology is, please define it in summary form, possibly with a quick couple of verses substantiating the thought?

I've only had the briefest exposure to it and would like to know clearly what is being discussed before I comment, possibly with a foot in my mouth.

Blessings,
GaryIf you really want to get an understanding I suggest you take a look at the following books:

The Fire That Consumes: A Biblical and Historical Study of the Doctrine of Final Punishment by Edward Fudge

and

Death and the soul after life by George Wisbrock

Steven3
Nov 19th 2007, 02:15 AM
If you really want to get an understanding I suggest you take a look at the following books:

The Fire That Consumes: A Biblical and Historical Study of the Doctrine of Final Punishment by Edward Fudge

and

Death and the soul after life by George Wisbrock

Thanks for those refs Wintermute :). I also see that Edward Fudge (non immortal soulist, "conditionalist") has written a debate book with Robert A. Peterson (immortal soulist) called Two views of Hell (http://www.amazon.com/Two-Views-Hell-Biblical-Theological/dp/0830822550). The reviews on Amazon are interesting.

KnightwithDignity
Nov 22nd 2007, 12:35 AM
here is a a little study that I did in the Word regarding what happens to a man when he dies. I think you will find it interesting.

Job 9:9-10 The Lord... in whose hand is the sould of every living thing and the breath of all mankind.

Eccl 8:8 There is no man that hath power over the spirit to retain the spirit.

These verses tell us that it is God who has power of life and death over a persons life.

Let us look at what God gives to man in order for man to live...

Gen2:7 God ... breathed into his nostrils the breath of life... and man lived. Breath from God and man lives.

Job 34:4 The spirit of of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty has given me life. It is Gods breath and spirit that gives man life.

Ps 104:30 You send forth your spirit, and they are created. The spirit comes from God and man lives.

Ezek 37:10 The breath came into them and they lived.
Ezek 37:14 I shall put my spirit in you and you shall live.
The breath and spirit come from God and man lives.

Job 27:3 While my breath is in me and the spirit of God is in my nostrils.
Man needs the spirit and breath from God in order to stay alive.

Is 42:5 ... he that giveth breath unto the people upon it (the earth), and spirit to them that walk therein. God gives spirit and breath to man.

2 Cor 3:6 the spirit gives life.

These verses make it very clear that God gives to man His Spirit and His Breath in order for man to live.

So what happens when man dies...

Job 34:14-15 If He set his heart upon man, if He gather unto Himself His spirit and His breath; all flesh shall perish together and mand shall turn again unto dust. God takes His spirit and His breath, and man dies.

Eccl 12:7 and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it. The spirit that returns to God is the spirit that God gave in the first place.


IMPORTANT OBSERVATION.
These verses are not talking about Mans spirit. They are talking about Gods spirit that He gives to man just as they are talking about Gods breath.

Conclusion...
If it is Gods spirit and Gods breath that God gives to man in order for man to live... and if it is Gods spirit and Gods breath that God takes back when man dies...

then the body of man... returns to the dust from which it came

that only leaves... the spirit of man... that sleeps.


Incidentally...
Eccl 3:21 The spirit of man that goes upward.... from the above verses shows clearly that this is the spirit that God gave to man he was made to live... and that returns to God when man dies.

markedward
Nov 23rd 2007, 02:29 AM
Jesus' spirit, however, was not dead, and it returned into the hands of the Father at the death of His body on the Cross.It was my understanding that Jesus did not return to heaven until after His resurrection, as opposed to when He died. A few passages of the NT, when taken in tandem, tell us Jesus' soul went to Sheol/Hades when He died, not heaven.

VerticalReality
Nov 23rd 2007, 07:12 PM
It was my understanding that Jesus did not return to heaven until after His resurrection, as opposed to when He died. A few passages of the NT, when taken in tandem, tell us Jesus' soul went to Sheol/Hades when He died, not heaven.

Why would a sanctified and perfected soul go to Hades?

KnightwithDignity
Nov 23rd 2007, 09:08 PM
The bible seems to be consistant on the topic of what happens when a person dies...

As far as the body is concerned there are verses clearly stating that it returns to the dust from whence it came.

As far as the breath is concerned the study which I did shows me clearly that it came from God in the start, and returns to God when I die.

The controversy seems to be over the spirit of Man.

I looked up in a concordence all references to Spirit. In some cases these make a reference to the Spirit of God, ie the Holy Spirit. In other cases these make a reference to the state of mind of a person, ie emotions or attititude.

There were clear statements that show that Man does have a spirit, which appears to come into existance when we are created in the womb.

But my study suprised me when I found the references to the fact that God also gives His spirit to man in order for man to live, and that on death it is His spirit that returns to God. This I found was not a reference to the Holy Spirit, nor was it a reference to Mans spirit.

read the references in my little study above from the Word for yourself and see if I am mistaken.

There seems then that there is only one loose end to be dealt with and that is mans spirit. And it seems to fit that it is the spirit of man that sleeps.

Sleep and death are closely interlinked through out the scripture. Even Jesus refers to this link. Especially with Lazarus.

The land of sleep, forgetfulness, into which man descends on death and in which Man has no understanding of the things that are going on and can not praise God, are references concerning the destination of man when he dies.

Hell, hades, shael, grave are all words that seem to describe the same place. A look at different translations will give you confirmation of this.

How is it possible to disagree with the clear statements in the Word, even from Jesus, that when we die we sleep.

And further more, it is also clearly stated by Paul, that on the great day of the resurrection, those who have DIED in Christ, shall AWAKEN.

This is obviously a clearly biblical teaching. Why should it be considered contriversial. And why then is it also not allowed in End Times when this is so clearly linked with the topic of the resurrection.

Pleroo
Nov 23rd 2007, 10:42 PM
Lots of good points, but I've never heard anyone explain what John means then:

Jn 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

Jn 5:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life.

Jn 10:28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand.

Jn 17:3 And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.

1 Jn 5:11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

1 Jn 5:13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.

1 Jn 5:20 And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.

Pleroo
Nov 23rd 2007, 11:24 PM
This, in my mind, has always given a powerful support to the idea of soul sleep. It puts much more of an emphasis on the hope of the resurrection, than does the idea of an ethereal existence between death and resurrection.

Who says it has to be an ethereal existance - or any existance at all - between death and resurrection? Who's to say it isn't instantaneous. We're to be raised on the "last day" at the "last trump" ... Well, whose last day and who is the trumpet blowing for? Our last day maybe, when the trump blows for us personally?

Steven3
Nov 24th 2007, 03:11 AM
Hi Pleroo :)
Lots of good points, but I've never heard anyone explain what John means then:

Jn 3:36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.

It's worth noting that there's a minor, but still meaningful, difference between

to have immortality (athanasia, God only, 1Tim6:16)
to have eternal life (aionian life, John 3:36)In 1Tim6:16, God clearly cannot die - He alone has im-mortality. But in John 3:36 the believer can still die, and does, yet nevertheless possesses, has rights to, owns, hold, has, eternal or aionian life. Now this adjective aionian can mean:

finite starting point - continues for an age
finite starting point - continues for everIn classical secular Greek texts it tends to be the former (a "lifetime" member of the agora, etc), and there are a few contexts where that's true in the Bible also. But generally in sacred pagan texts, and in the Bible, it means the latter (from age to age, everlasting), and that's what aionian most naturally means in John 3:36. The point is though that unlike "immortal" which has no starting point, "aionian" still has a starting point. The fact that Christ can say someone "has" it clearly doesn't mean they have it right then and there or the person would live longer than Methuselah. It can only mean

finite starting point from moment of death
finite starting point from moment of resurrectionAnd the only way to judge between those two possibilities is look for context in the surrounding chapters of John. Given the emphasis on judgment in 3:36 above it has to be a reading that doesn't ignore 5:26-29 for example.
God bless
Steven

markedward
Nov 24th 2007, 07:53 AM
Why would a sanctified and perfected soul go to Hades?Jesus had a perfect soul, but He was living His life the exactly the same as every man. Born in a human body, lived a human life, died a human death. Just in curiosity, since I don't know your habits of studying the Bible, but how much research have you done about Sheol/Hades?

When the references in the Old Testament are taken in tandem about Sheol (Greek "Hades"), both those who were faithful to God (David, Samuel, etc.) and those who were unrepentent to death (Saul, etc.) all shared the same fate of their souls being directed to Sheol. Period. But, Jesus tells us that the "afterlife" was divided by a chasm (in the story of Lazarus and the rich man), that the sinful were on one side of the chasm being tormented, while those faithful to God, those in need of rest from the evils of life, were on the other side in "Abraham's Bosom;" paradise. Jesus told the thief on the cross next to Him "Today you will be with Me in paradise." Peter tells us in Acts 2 that Jesus only was exalted to heaven to be with God after His resurrection. In verse 2:31 Peter says that His "soul was not abandoned to Hades, nor did His body see corruption."

While it is given that Hades is often translated as "the grave," why would Peter say "nor" in reference to Jesus' body seeing corruption if he already spoke of Him not being left to "Hades"? Peter makes a distinctive difference between the two, Jesus's soul was not left in Hades (Sheol), nor did Jesus' body see physical corruption. His soul was not left behind, and His body did not decay. Then, and only then, did God exalt Jesus to His throne in heaven, from which He poured out His Spirit. The Psalm that Peter quotes, and his own words on the subject (as inspired from the Spirit) make it abundantly clear; Jesus' soul went to Sheol/Hades. Jesus, obviously, did not go to the place in Sheol/Hades where the wicked were tormented. And as His words to the thief confirm, He went to paradise, the other "side" of Sheol. Jesus did not suffer anymore torment than His time on the cross. That was His sacrifice.

Pleroo
Nov 24th 2007, 04:23 PM
Hi Pleroo :)

It's worth noting that there's a minor, but still meaningful, difference between

to have immortality (athanasia, God only, 1Tim6:16)
to have eternal life (aionian life, John 3:36)In 1Tim6:16, God clearly cannot die - He alone has im-mortality. But in John 3:36 the believer can still die, and does, yet nevertheless possesses, has rights to, owns, hold, has, eternal or aionian life. Now this adjective aionian can mean:

finite starting point - continues for an age
finite starting point - continues for everIn classical secular Greek texts it tends to be the former (a "lifetime" member of the agora, etc), and there are a few contexts where that's true in the Bible also. But generally in sacred pagan texts, and in the Bible, it means the latter (from age to age, everlasting), and that's what aionian most naturally means in John 3:36. The point is though that unlike "immortal" which has no starting point, "aionian" still has a starting point. The fact that Christ can say someone "has" it clearly doesn't mean they have it right then and there or the person would live longer than Methuselah. It can only mean

finite starting point from moment of death
finite starting point from moment of resurrectionAnd the only way to judge between those two possibilities is look for context in the surrounding chapters of John. Given the emphasis on judgment in 3:36 above it has to be a reading that doesn't ignore 5:26-29 for example.
God bless
Steven


So we ignore the texts which say that JESUS is eternal life, and that He is in us and we in Him? We ignore the text that says we have already passed from death to life? We ignore the text that says we will never die? Eternal life (Jesus) doesn't start at some point in the future. Eternal Life happened the moment we were in Him according to John.

As far as the word aionion, I have heard a different explanation. Aionion is an adjective and, derived from the word aion which means age, it is literally translated age-during or age-abiding. Like other adjectives, the quality of the word is determined by the object it modifies. For instance, the adjective "big" modifying the word dog would have a different quality than if it were modifying the word building.

So, too, the length of aionion (age-during) is defined by the noun -- in this case, Life which is found in Jesus. His Life, as you have said, is immortal and thus, to my way of thinking, His Life being in us gives us immortality -- unless you are proposing that that Life is taken from us at physical death, in spite of what John says.

:hmm:

brakelite
Nov 26th 2007, 08:04 PM
We dont ignore anything, we simply compare scripture with scripture until it makes sense. We sleep. We are resurrected. The second death (from which there is NO resurrection) has no power over us. Thus, those who are Christ's recieve the promise of eternal life AT HIS COMING.
Regards, Brakelite.

KnightwithDignity
Nov 26th 2007, 08:06 PM
When Jesus came to this earth He was fully God. Yet He also took upon Himself, the nature of man. But not man as man was created in the Garden. But man in his fallen state. For Mary was just as much a sinner as you and I.

Because man fell in sin, he fell under the penalty of death. And this is to be the fate of all mankind. The only exceptions to this have been Enoch, and Elijah, who were both taken to heaven without seeing death. But there is one more group who will not suffer this first death. They are them which are found faithful on the great day of the return of Jesus. Otherwise all men are under the penalty of the first death.

And because Jesus took upon Himself the nature of fallen man, He also then had to face the penalty of death. Not because He was a sinner, but because He inherited the fallen nature of man through Mary.

He paid the price for sin, in order to be able to offer the reward of redemption.

For those who receive Jesus as Lord and Saviour and are considered to be faithful Jesus promised the reward of eternal life. Like the faithful of Heb 11, we receive that promise by faith, yet we will still die, unless Jesus comes first. We are partakers of the promise, by faith, NOW, but we are not partakers of the promise PHYSICALLY, until the great day of the resurrection. Then all those who have DIED in Christ shall awaken from their sleep of death, will recieve new bodies after the fashion of Jesus's resurrected body. Those who In Christ are still alive have their bodies changed in the twinkling of an eye.

This is the time when we receive our reward. For Jesus said that when He comes again He comes with His reward. This is the time when we physically receive the fulfillment of the promise of Jesus. And it is from this point on, that we shall never see death again.

The promise that we shall never die, is not refering to the first death. It is refering to the second death. All who receive the promise of everlasting life... will never suffer the second death, which is the lake of fire, the reward and destination for those who are wicked.

markedward
Nov 26th 2007, 08:06 PM
We dont ignore anything, we simply compare scripture with scripture until it makes sense. We sleep. We are resurrected. The second death (from which there is NO resurrection) has no power over us. Thus, those who are Christ's recieve the promise of eternal life AT HIS COMING.
Regards, Brakelite.Why does scripture say "it is appointed once to men to die, then the judgment" yet it leaves out this intermediate "sleep" that you suppose is between the death part and the judgment part?

Pleroo
Nov 26th 2007, 09:27 PM
We dont ignore anything, we simply compare scripture with scripture until it makes sense.

That's good to know. :) I realized after I wrote that that it sounded accusatory and I didn't mean it that way. What I'm saying is that so far soul sleep doesn't make sense to me when I consider what John has to say about the matter. That doesn't mean it doesn't actually make sense, but I'm not seeing it. So, for me , it appears as though these passages are being ignored.


We sleep. We are resurrected. The second death (from which there is NO resurrection) has no power over us. Thus, those who are Christ's recieve the promise of eternal life AT HIS COMING.
Regards, Brakelite.

When I physically die, I expect the Lord to come for me so I also expect to receive the promise then and there. :) But then, I think John makes it clear that eternal life is not the promise I'm waiting for. I already have it, according to him.. The promise I'm waiting for is my spiritual body, like His. I could be wrong and it won't be a disaster if I am, but so far that's how I'm seeing Scripture.

KnightwithDignity
Nov 26th 2007, 09:35 PM
The fiathful in Christ are like the faithful of Heb 11. They have received the promise in faith... but they die without having partaken of the fulfillment of that promise.

The fulfillment of the promise of receiving everlasting life... happens at the great resurrection... when we awaken from the sleep of death, recieve our new immortal bodies, then is the fulfillment, we shall never again suffer death, we shall live forevermore.

Pleroo
Nov 26th 2007, 09:57 PM
The promise that we shall never die, is not refering to the first death.

Well, I agree that it's not referring to the first death, though I don't agree that the first death is physical death. I think the first death we ALL died was spiritual death. Not one of us escaped that death. We were all dead in sin and we were born that way.


It is refering to the second death. All who receive the promise of everlasting life... will never suffer the second death, which is the lake of fire, the reward and destination for those who are wicked.

But the lake of fire, itself, is not second death. Second death is when death (the first/spiritual death) and hades (the grave/physical death) are cast into the lake of fire. And those who are not already in Christ and therefore are still in first death (spiritual death) are also cast into the lake of fire. Then all death and sin are destroyed permanently.

The Bible does not tell us that we will have no part of the second death, by the way. It only says that we will not be hurt of it. Imho, second death happens when we die to sin and death which happens when we are baptized into Christ's death. Therefore, we are already experiencing the Lake of Fire.

I disagree then, that second death is what John is referring to. I believe he is assuring us that we will never again experience spiritual death (the first death).

Romans 6:1-23 1 What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase? 2 By no means! We died to sin; how can we live in it any longer? 3 Or don't you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? 4 We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. 5 If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection. 6 For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin-- 7 because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. 8 Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10 The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. 11 In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

Steven3
Nov 26th 2007, 10:15 PM
Hi Pleroo



finite starting point from moment of death
finite starting point from moment of resurrectionAnd the only way to judge between those two possibilities is look for context in the surrounding chapters of John. Given the emphasis on judgment in 3:36 above it has to be a reading that doesn't ignore 5:26-29 for example.
God bless
StevenSo we ignore the texts which say that JESUS is eternal life, and that He is in us and we in Him? We ignore the text that says we have already passed from death to life? We ignore the text that says we will never die? Eternal life (Jesus) doesn't start at some point in the future. Eternal Life happened the moment we were in Him according to John.To look for context and work out a superficial contradiction is not the same as to ignore. If we don't read for context (and in this case a careful difference in the verb and noun) then for certain we will end up "cherry-picking", as they say, and for certain ignoring one set of verses. And human nature being what it is, since from Eve we all desperately want loopholes not to believe that "God only has immortality", inevitably we will cherry-pick the 2 or 3 verses that taken literally suggest that we already have immortality and ignore the 200~300 that say man is mortal. So I think basically the answer is as sensibly stated by Brakelite:
We dont ignore anything, we simply compare scripture with scripture until it makes sense. We sleep. We are resurrected. The second death (from which there is NO resurrection) has no power over us. Thus, those who are Christ's recieve the promise of eternal life AT HIS COMING.
Regards, Brakelite.And that, unacceptable and unwelcome though it is, is unfortunately what the Bible teaches. Christians are not already immortal - because as Paul says

1Co15:53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:

That hasn't happened yet, except for "the Second Man", the Firstfruits from the dead:

1Co15:23 But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.... 42 So is it with the resurrection of the dead...... 49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.
God bless
Stevem

KnightwithDignity
Nov 26th 2007, 10:32 PM
Revelation 2:11
He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death

Revelation 20:6
Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years

Revelation 20:14
And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

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.


The fate of the wicked is to be tossed into the lake of fire. This fire will consume them body and spirit. They will cease to exist. This is everlasting death. This is the second death.

Pleroo
Nov 26th 2007, 10:43 PM
Hi PlerooTo look for context and work out a superficial contradiction is not the same as to ignore. If we don't read for context (and in this case a careful difference in the verb and noun) then for certain we will end up "cherry-picking", as they say, and for certain ignoring one set of verses. And human nature being what it is, since from Eve we all desperately want loopholes not to believe that "God only has immortality", inevitably we will cherry-pick the 2 or 3 verses that taken literally suggest that we already have immortality and ignore the 200~300 that say man is mortal. So I think basically the answer is as sensibly stated by Brakelite: And that, unacceptable and unwelcome though it is, is unfortunately what the Bible teaches. Christians are not already immortal - because as Paul says

1Co15:53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:

That hasn't happened yet, except for "the Second Man", the Firstfruits from the dead:

1Co15:23 But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.... 42 So is it with the resurrection of the dead...... 49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.
God bless
Stevem

I tend to think this is speaking only of the change of the physical body to a glorified spiritual one. That seems to me to be the context of this passage. And, as I've said, I also would tend to believe that this happens instantaneously, when Christ comes for each of us individually at our physical death.

We are told that we are already alive in Christ. You all seem to say that this is just a promise, it's not something that we actually yet possess. I'm not seeing that as Scriptural.

Ro 8:10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness.

2 Co 4:11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.

Eph 2:5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved.

Col 2:13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins,


We are alive now. Are you saying we must somehow die again spiritually? I think Scripture is clear that that won't happen, can't happen, because our spirit is in union with the Spirit of Christ who is Eternal Life.

Pleroo
Nov 26th 2007, 10:53 PM
Revelation 2:11
He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death

Revelation 20:6
Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years

Revelation 20:14
And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

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.


The fate of the wicked is to be tossed into the lake of fire. This fire will consume them body and spirit. They will cease to exist. This is everlasting death. This is the second death.


Yes, the wicked have their part in the lake of fire. And were we not at one time all wicked, fearful and unbelieving idolaters? Scripture says we were ALL children of wrath. But those who were given to take part in the first resurrection (baptized into His death, and raised with Him) will not BE HURT of that second death. We have already died the second death with Christ, AND BEEN RAISED WITH HIM, so death no longer has power over us.

By the way, if it sounds like I think I know it all, I don't feel that way at all. :) I enjoy "arguing" this out with you, because I am still searching these things and it is helpful to bounce it off others, test them and see if/how my understanding is faulty. Thanks for your patience. :)

KnightwithDignity
Nov 26th 2007, 11:17 PM
all men must die once, the physical death. Unless you happen to be amongst those alive and found faithful on the coming of Jesus.

There is a choice that man must must also make which concerns a second death.

Either we chose Jesus, and experience a spiritual death and resurrection.
Or we reject Jesus ... and after the resurrection face the lake of fire and second death.

Pleroo
Nov 27th 2007, 12:00 AM
all men must die once, the physical death. Unless you happen to be amongst those alive and found faithful on the coming of Jesus.

And yet, Scripture talks about more than just a physical death. As a matter of fact, unlike physical death, it is the one death that everyone, including elijah and enoch, absolutely died in Adam - spiritual death, death in sin. So, which death is that, in your opinion?


There is a choice that man must must also make which concerns a second death.

Either we chose Jesus, and experience a spiritual death and resurrection.
Or we reject Jesus ... and after the resurrection face the lake of fire and second death.

I don't think it's a choice at all, but then that gets into the free will/sovereignty debate. We all experience the second death. Some experience it in the here and now (as I put forth Scripture in my previous post, when they are baptized into the death of Christ). These are the ones who, like the 3 men (Shack, Rack and Benny ;)) in the OT who went into the fire and met there one like a Son of God, are not harmed of it. Some will experience the second death in the age to come. But it's not a choice, either way.

Steven3
Nov 27th 2007, 12:28 AM
Hi Pleroo

I tend to think this is speaking only of the change of the physical body to a glorified spiritual one. That seems to me to be the context of this passage. And, as I've said, I also would tend to believe that this happens instantaneously, when Christ comes for each of us individually at our physical death. But 1Co15 is resolutely for the death of the psyche (soul), so why would you think the "context" of 1Co15 is that when Paul says the context is "but each in his order"? Or why would anyone believe that we are already "immortal" now when Paul says that we can't be "immortal" until we're first "incorruptible"? Are you sure soul-awakeness is really Paul's 1Co15 context? :)


We are told that we are already alive in Christ. You all seem to say that this is just a promise, it's not something that we actually yet possess. I'm not seeing that as Scriptural.

Ro 8:10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness.

2 Co 4:11 For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.

Eph 2:5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions--it is by grace you have been saved.

Col 2:13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins,

We are alive now. Yes we are alive. I just checked my pulse. Yes, I'm definitely alive. But the above is figurative. However, note what Ro8:10, 2Co4:11, Eph2:5, Col2:3 say and don't say:

"alive" = alive
"immortal" = immortal


Are you saying we must somehow die again spiritually? I think Scripture is clear that that won't happen, can't happen, because our spirit is in union with the Spirit of Christ who is Eternal Life. Not in 1Co15, sorry, Paul is clearly saying that "immortality" follows "incorruption" not "corruption". If the soul received immortality upon the corruption of the body, not mortality upon the corruption of the body then everything Paul has said from 1Co15:16 onwards is contradicting himself: 1Co15:16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.

I often think Sunday School scholars should be made to memorise these verses, because in later life it becomes increasingly difficult to register them. Or maybe it needs writing out on the blackboard 50 times ;)

For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, ...........

However I imagine it's quite possible for an adult to write that 50 times, and then 3 min later still think: Even if the dead are not raised, those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are awake in heaven! This is very deeply embedded in human thinking, because sleep for 8 hours is within our experience, but sleep for 8 days or 800 years is beyond it.


It may help to think through the consequences for the NT in what we're saying when we try and find examples of people who were given immortality in the OT
And yet, Scripture talks about more than just a physical death. As a matter of fact, unlike physical death, it is the one death that everyone, including elijah and enoch, absolutely died in Adam - spiritual death, death in sin. So, which death is that, in your opinion? When Jesus says figurative statements like "let the dead bury their dead" it's clear that both "dead" cannot be literal. "Death", like any other word in the NT, can be used figuratively or literally. But using a word figuratively in a few verses doesn't make the word itself not a reality.

As for Enoch, he's not a loophole through which an immortal soul can squeeze ;)
1. Hebrews says (twice 11:13,39) that Enoch died and didn't receive what was promised.
2. Romans says (at least twice 5:12,14) that Enoch died.
3. Corinthians says (at least twice 1Co15:20-23, 47-50) that Enoch died.
4. etc. etc.
5. Most importantly: When Christ said no one comes to the Father except by him John14 that means that Enoch either was saved by Christ or he by-passed him. If even only one man got to heaven (counter to Christ's statement in John 3:13) then Christ was "Secondfruits" or "Thirdfruits" from the dead, and the cross accomplished nothing.

Remember: For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
God bless!
Steven

Pleroo
Nov 27th 2007, 01:37 AM
Hi Pleroo
But 1Co15 is resolutely for the death of the psyche (soul), so why would you think the "context" of 1Co15 is that when Paul says the context is "but each in his order"? Or why would anyone believe that we are already "immortal" now when Paul says that we can't be "immortal" until we're first "incorruptible"? Are you sure soul-awakeness is really Paul's 1Co15 context? :)

15:35 But someone may ask, "How are the dead raised? With what kind of body will they come?"


Yes we are alive. I just checked my pulse. Yes, I'm definitely alive. But the above is figurative. However, note what Ro8:10, 2Co4:11, Eph2:5, Col2:3 say and don't say:

"alive" = alive
"immortal" = immortal

Okay, are you being obtuse or do you really not understand that there is a difference between being spiritually alive and physically alive? :hmm:

And if we are spiritually alive IN CHRIST who is eternal, then please explain to me how we can die again spiritually?


Not in 1Co15, sorry, Paul is clearly saying that "immortality" follows "incorruption" not "corruption". If the soul received immortality upon the corruption of the body, not mortality upon the corruption of the body then everything Paul has said from 1Co15:16 onwards is contradicting himself: 1Co15:16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.

I often think Sunday School scholars should be made to memorise these verses, because in later life it becomes increasingly difficult to register them. Or maybe it needs writing out on the blackboard 50 times ;)

For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, ...........


However I imagine it's quite possible for an adult to write that 50 times, and then 3 min later still think: Even if the dead are not raised, those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are awake in heaven! This is very deeply embedded in human thinking, because sleep for 8 hours is within our experience, but sleep for 8 days or 800 years is beyond it.

Paul is not saying the the dead are not raised or that those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished! He's saying the EXACT OPPOSITE.


12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either. 17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men.


Paul is saying that if you don't believe in the resurrection, then you don't believe Christ has been raised either and if that's what you believe, then your faith in Christ has no purpose. IF that's what you believe, THEN the dead are not raised and those who have fallen asleep in Him are LOST and HAVE PERISHED.

BUT Christ is raised, so those who have fallen asleep in Christ have NOT perished. That's what Paul is saying.

Write that 50 times. :)



It may help to think through the consequences for the NT in what we're saying when we try and find examples of people who were given immortality in the OTWhen Jesus says figurative statements like "let the dead bury their dead" it's clear that both "dead" cannot be literal. "Death", like any other word in the NT, can be used figuratively or literally. But using a word figuratively in a few verses doesn't make the word itself not a reality.

What? Where did I say death wasn't a reality? Spiritual death is all too real.


As for Enoch, he's not a loophole through which an immortal soul can squeeze ;)
1. Hebrews says (twice 11:13,39) that Enoch died and didn't receive what was promised.
2. Romans says (at least twice 5:12,14) that Enoch died.
3. Corinthians says (at least twice 1Co15:20-23, 47-50) that Enoch died.
4. etc. etc.
5. Most importantly: When Christ said no one comes to the Father except by him John14 that means that Enoch either was saved by Christ or he by-passed him. If even only one man got to heaven (counter to Christ's statement in John 3:13) then Christ was "Secondfruits" or "Thirdfruits" from the dead, and the cross accomplished nothing.

I don't really need to get into a debate on Enoch. I used him as an example to the person I responded to because THEY used him as an example. It was as simple as that. THEY believe Enoch didn't die, so that's what I was responding to. I don't have any strong opinion on it one way or another though I appreciated Illumine's take on this in the BC thread. It was something I'd never heard before, but it's certainly something to consider.


Remember: For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
God bless!

REMEMBER: The dead ARE raised or else your faith is futile. And since they are raised, since Christ is raised, those who have fallen asleep in Christ have NOT perished!

God bless you too. :)

Steven3
Nov 27th 2007, 02:23 AM
Hi Pleroo :)
Okay, are you being obtuse or do you really not understand that there is a difference between being spiritually alive and physically alive? :hmm:I'm simply saying that if you look at all the people Paul's referring to in those verses they were both. There is one verse from Christ about dead people, Abraham Isaac and Jacob, being "alive to God", but those verses Ro8:10, 2Co4:11, Eph2:5, Col2:3 were written to people who were very much alive. No corpses read Paul's letters.



And if we are spiritually alive IN CHRIST who is eternal, then please explain to me how we can die again spiritually?Simple, because we've still got one foot IN ADAM too. We don't stop being IN ADAM because we are also IN CHRIST. As in ADAM all die - you and I are still sinners, still mortal, and we will surely die, and sleep. Unless Christ comes back first.




I often think Sunday School scholars should be made to memorise these verses, because in later life it becomes increasingly difficult to register them. Or maybe it needs writing out on the blackboard 50 times ;)

For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
For if the dead are not raised, ...........


However I imagine it's quite possible for an adult to write that 50 times, and then 3 min later still think: Even if the dead are not raised, those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are awake in heaven! This is very deeply embedded in human thinking, because sleep for 8 hours is within our experience, but sleep for 8 days or 800 years is beyond it. Paul is not saying the the dead are not raised or that those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished! He's saying the EXACT OPPOSITE.I never said he was, but no, Paul is not saying the EXACT OPPOSITE, he's saying EXACTLY WHAT IT SAYS ;) that if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. In other words, dead people aren't awake. If they were then they wouldn't need raising. If there is no resurrection (when Christ returns v.23) they're lost.

The Bible doesn't teach "soul-awakeness". If it did Christ died for nothing, or rather for nothing more than transporting disembodied souls from one disembodied location to another.

Q. What does Psalm 6:5 say about dead people? Are they awake?
God bless
Steven

Pleroo
Nov 27th 2007, 03:34 AM
Hi Pleroo :)I'm simply saying that if you look at all the people Paul's referring to in those verses they were both. There is one verse from Christ about dead people, Abraham Isaac and Jacob, being "alive to God", but those verses Ro8:10, 2Co4:11, Eph2:5, Col2:3 were written to people who were very much alive. No corpses read Paul's letters.


Simple, because we've still got one foot IN ADAM too. We don't stop being IN ADAM because we are also IN CHRIST. As in ADAM all die - you and I are still sinners, still mortal, and we will surely die, and sleep. Unless Christ comes back first.

I have never said that we will not physically die. We died spiriually in Adam and our bodies, as a result of sin, die too. But we have been raised spiritually in Christ, the passages I quoted make this very clear. You have yet to show me where we can again die SPIRITUALLY.




I never said he was, but no, Paul is not saying the EXACT OPPOSITE, he's saying EXACTLY WHAT IT SAYS ;) that if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. In other words, dead people aren't awake. If they were then they wouldn't need raising. If there is no resurrection (when Christ returns v.23) they're lost.

But you aren't just teaching that people sleep. You have been saying that we actually DIE. If you meant we physically die, I would agree with you whole-heartedly. "Fallen asleep" is a euphemism for dying physically. But you are insisting that we die spiritually as well and I find that idea nowhere compatible with the Scripture.



The Bible doesn't teach "soul-awakeness". If it did Christ died for nothing, or rather for nothing more than transporting disembodied souls from one disembodied location to another.

I never said the Bible taught anything other than the fact that we are spiritually alive in Christ. If you can show me where the Bible says we die spiritually when we die physically, then I'll just hush up and go away. :)



Q. What does Psalm 6:5 say about dead people?
Are they awake?
God bless
Steven

Ps 6:5 No one remembers you when he is dead. Who praises you from the grave?


Jesus said [post-Psalms era] we would worship [praise] Him IN SPIRIT. So, when you can prove that I'll die spiritually when I die physically, then I'll accept that my spirit won't be able to praise God when my physical body is in the grave.

Steven3
Nov 27th 2007, 03:49 AM
Hi Pleroo :)
Ps 6:5 No one remembers you when he is dead. Who praises you from the grave?


Jesus said [post-Psalms era] we would worship [praise] Him IN SPIRIT.

"worship in spirit" = in spirit (living people)
"worship as a spirit" = as a spirit (dead people, sic - not in Bible)
"in spirit" is only used of living people.
So, when you can prove that I'll die spiritually when I die physically, then I'll accept that my spirit won't be able to praise God when my physical body is in the grave.With all respect, I'm afraid I don't believe you. Even if there were a dozen verses as clear as this: For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. I still don't believe that you would accept them :). Nothing personal, just my experience. I've never known anyone who has already decided that souls were mortal in the OT and become immortal in the NT come back from that position. I will remind you however that Paul says only God is immortal and that only when the corruptible (you and I now) puts on incorruptible (new body) then will we receive immortality. But I'm not going to waste my time and yours listing all the mortality verses from the NT, I need to go get lunch :), and you're immortal so you don't need to eat :D (just kidding!). The NT mortality verses are there for those than can stomach them.
God bless
Steven

Pleroo
Nov 27th 2007, 04:55 AM
Hi Pleroo :)

"worship in spirit" = in spirit (living people)
"worship as a spirit" = as a spirit (dead people, sic - not in Bible)
"in spirit" is only used of living people.

Exactly. And we are told that we were dead and now are alive. Just so I'm very clear, you are saying that after having been made spiritually alive in Christ we are now going to spiritually die again?


With all respect, I'm afraid I don't believe you.

Well now, I'd say it's not the tiniest bit respectful to call someone a liar. :lol: But, I know how you feel and I don't fault you.


Even if there were a dozen verses as clear as this: For if the dead are not raised, Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. I still don't believe that you would accept them :). Nothing personal, just my experience.

Fair enough.

But can you tell me what exactly this passage you've quoted is clear about? This says we fall asleep in the Lord -- we physically die. I have no problem with that. And you say that we must put on immortality, I also have no problem with that. As I've said in at least a couple posts now, I don't see the difficulty with believing that we receive our glorified spiritual bodies immediately upon physical death.

And, even if we don't, it still doesn't answer the [very genuine] question I have concerning the SPIRITUAL life we have in Christ. How does this passage pertain to that? You say you can quote mortality verses. But are you speaking of physical mortality, or spiritual? Do you believe there is a difference between the two?


I've never known anyone who has already decided that souls were mortal in the OT and become immortal in the NT come back from that position.

Well, that's not a position I've taken, that I recall. So, I don't need to "come back" from it. ;) I've never said anything at all about souls being immortal, OT or NT. I've consistently spoken of those who are in Christ being spiritually alive because of HIS Life. How exactly the Father dealt with those who lived and physically died in faith before the time of Jesus' earthly life, death and resurrection, I don't know. I don't even pretend to have a firm handle on the specifics for those who have lived by faith and "fallen asleep" since then. Which would be why I had an interest in this topic to begin with. So if you are beyond a doubt convinced that soul sleep is Biblical, I wouldn't think you'd let some genuine questioning throw you.



I will remind you however that Paul says only God is immortal and that only when the corruptible (you and I now) puts on incorruptible (new body) then will we receive immortality. But I'm not going to waste my time and yours listing all the mortality verses from the NT, I need to go get lunch :), and you're immortal so you don't need to eat :D (just kidding!). The NT mortality verses are there for those than can stomach them.

Perhaps we're just talking past each other. Again, I have no problem saying we must put on immortality -- glorified spiritual bodies. I simply am asking if you have any real answer as to John's statements and the consistent Biblical them that we were once spiritually dead, then brought to life in Christ. Are you or are you not saying that one can spiritually die twice? And do you not see any conflict in Scripture with that idea, in spite of the passages I've quoted in previous posts?

25 Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; 26 and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?"



Do you really find it impossible to understand why a statement from Jesus that whoever believes in Him will live and will never die carries a lot of weight in this discussion? To say that this is something not yet realized imho flies in the face of the passage which says we have already passed from death into life.

But if you answer nothing else from my post just answer me this ... which is it in your opinion: Are you spiritually alive in Christ but going to spiritually die again when you physically die? Or do you remain spiritually dead throughout your physical life, waiting to be made spiritually alive sometime after your physical death?

Anyway, enjoy your lunch. My tired mortal body is taking my alive in Christ spirit to bed.

KnightwithDignity
Nov 27th 2007, 09:55 AM
This body that we currently have is both corrupted and temporary. This body must die. It is the penalty that came on adam and eve. This is the death common to all men.

But it is not the one that counts. What matters is what happens next. And there are only two choices..

First. Receive salvation, forgiveness... and everlasting life. You will still have the first death. But if you die to self spiritually now, you will not have to suffer the second death. Instead you receive everlasting life. and that is given to you at the great resurrection when Jesus comes.

Second. Reject Jesus. you will suffer the first death. Then when the wicked are raised. You will face the judgement. And then be cast into the lake of fire to be consumed body and spirit. That is the second death.

Pleroo
Nov 27th 2007, 05:52 PM
This body that we currently have is both corrupted and temporary. This body must die. It is the penalty that came on adam and eve. This is the death common to all men.

I don't disagree with you. Physical death is common to men, as is spiritual. I was just saying that the first death we died was spiritual.


But it is not the one that counts. What matters is what happens next. And there are only two choices..

First. Receive salvation, forgiveness... and everlasting life. You will still have the first death. But if you die to self spiritually now, you will not have to suffer the second death. Instead you receive everlasting life. and that is given to you at the great resurrection when Jesus comes.

Second. Reject Jesus. you will suffer the first death. Then when the wicked are raised. You will face the judgement. And then be cast into the lake of fire to be consumed body and spirit. That is the second death.

Okay. :) I'm not going to pursue this line of discussion since it's definitely off topic (my fault for bringing it up, I know), but thanks for your thoughts.

Steven3
Nov 28th 2007, 01:51 AM
Hi Pleroo :)
But if you answer nothing else from my post just answer me this ... which is it in your opinion: Are you spiritually alive in Christ but going to spiritually die again when you physically die? Or do you remain spiritually dead throughout your physical life, waiting to be made spiritually alive sometime after your physical death?

Anyway, enjoy your lunch. My tired mortal body is taking my alive in Christ spirit to bed.Thanks, okay:

I am spiritually alive, by the Grace of God, and I do not intend to spiritually die, Lord willing, if I do not turn my back on Christ.

When I physically die there won't be any me to "spiritually die" or "spiritually live" or spiritually do anything, because I'll be a carcase of rotting meat. I'll be beyond making any further decisions, spiritual or otherwise. I'll be "asleep" nothing more than a name in a Book waiting to be opened, hopefully.

I think you need to do a verse search and see if you can find any verse in the 66 books where a dead person is spiritually anything ;)
God bless
Steven

losthorizon
Nov 29th 2007, 02:09 AM
Hi Pleroo :)Thanks, okay:

I am spiritually alive, by the Grace of God, and I do not intend to spiritually die, Lord willing, if I do not turn my back on Christ.

When I physically die there won't be any me to "spiritually die" or "spiritually live" or spiritually do anything, because I'll be a carcase of rotting meat. I'll be beyond making any further decisions, spiritual or otherwise. I'll be "asleep" nothing more than a name in a Book waiting to be opened, hopefully.

I think you need to do a verse search and see if you can find any verse in the 66 books where a dead person is spiritually anything ;)
God bless
Steven
But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living… Matt. 22:31-32God said - "I am the God of Abraham” and Abraham has long ago “died physically”. God also very plainly states that, “He is not the God of the dead, but of the living". Abraham died and his body was buried and sleeps “in the dust of the ground” but Abraham’s soul lives on in a conscious state because God “is not the God of the dead, but of the living”.
Paul tells us that if we are “absent from the body” (physical death) our soul will be “present with the Lord”. The notion of “soul sleep” and “annihilation of the wicked” are both non-biblical doctrines.
"Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven…” (2 Corinthians 5:1-9).

Wintermute
Nov 29th 2007, 04:06 AM
Matt 22:23-34 The same day the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Him and asked Him, saying: "Teacher, Moses said that if a man dies, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife and raise up offspring for his brother. Now there were with us seven brothers. The first died after he had married, and having no offspring, left his wife to his brother. Likewise the second also, and the third, even to the seventh. Last of all the woman died also. Therefore, in the resurrection, whose wife of the seven will she be? For they all had her." Jesus answered and said to them, "You are mistaken, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels of God in heaven. But concerning the resurrection of the dead, have you not read what was spoken to you by God, saying, 'I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob'? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living." And when the multitudes heard this, they were astonished at His teaching. But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together.Matt 22:32 when it speaks about God being the God of the living, it is in reference to His power to resurrect, and the hope of the resurrection.

jeffweeder
Nov 29th 2007, 04:23 AM
I was just saying that the first death we died was spiritual.

That has to be true, because God told Adam that the day he ate that particular fruit he would die.
Something happened that very day they ate, and it wasnt physical death----that happen 900 or so years later.


Im not sure what happens after we die, whether we will be aware of some heavenly bliss .
Daniel was told that he would rest, and at the end he would rise to recieve of the lord his alotted place.

2thess implies that we of the lord will all marvel at him when he comes.
Why wouldnt we marvel at him upon death if we are aware of him?

The souls under the Alter in rev, even though they seem to be aware, seem to be put back to sleep.


When the Lamb broke the fifth seal, I saw underneath the altar the souls of those who had been slain because of the word of God, and because of the testimony which they had maintained;
10 and they cried out with a loud voice, saying, "How long, O Lord, holy and true, will You refrain from judging and avenging our blood on those who dwell on the earth?"
11 And there was given to each of them a white robe; and they were told that they should rest for a little while longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brethren who were to be killed even as they had been, would be completed also.


I just want to get away from this body of death. I wanna go home

Steven3
Nov 29th 2007, 08:04 AM
Wintermute
Very well said, and you could add that they "live to God" is not the same as "they are alive without bodies in the underworld", it's expressing a hope, "to God".

LH
So you think Luther was wrong? The notion of soul-awakeness is contradicted by Paul saying he didn't want to be "naked", "unclothed". 2Co5 is the same as 1Co15, it's a chapter teaching hope in a resurrection-body (like Christ's says Paul), not teaching disembodied spirits. The fact that people don't become ghosts on death is proven by Christ being resurrected and saying (Luke 24:39) that he had flesh and bone.

Jeff

I just want to get away from this body of death. I wanna go home Sorry, no can do :(. If Paul had to wait for resurrection so do we.

Likewise, if Adam was given immortality after eating the fruit, then Jesus died on the cross for nothing.
God bless
Steven

losthorizon
Nov 30th 2007, 03:32 AM
...LH So you think Luther was wrong?

Like the mortal man that he was - I think Martin Luther taught truth and error. Do you agree with Luther that the Devil (Satan) was a real spiritual being? Do you agree with Luther that “the fire of hell” was a literal place of “everlasting punishment” reserved for the Devil and his angels?
Do you know what the Devil thinks when he sees men use violence to propagate the gospel? He sits with folded arms behind the fire of hell, and says with malignant looks and frightful grin: "Ah, how wise these madmen are to play my game! Let them go on; I shall reap the benefit. I delight in it." But when he sees the Word running and contending alone on the battle-field, then he shudders and shakes for fear. ~ Martin Luther


The notion of soul-awakeness is contradicted by Paul saying he didn't want to be "naked", "unclothed". 2Co5 is the same as 1Co15, it's a chapter teaching hope in a resurrection-body (like Christ's says Paul), not teaching disembodied spirits. The fact that people don't become ghosts on death is proven by Christ being resurrected and saying (Luke 24:39) that he had flesh and bone.
The Bible teaches the part of man that “sleeps” is the part that is buried in the “dust of the earth”, i.e., man’s physical body. Paul teaches that it is God’s purpose for His own that whether “we live or die we should live together with Christ”. At death the Christian's “earthly tent” is dissolved back into the earth from whence it came (2 Cor. 5:1), but the spiritual part of man, his self-consciousness (the soul) departs ‘to be with the Lord’ (2 Cor. 5:8). This is not a hard concept. ;)

Wintermute
Nov 30th 2007, 06:02 AM
The Bible teaches the part of man that “sleeps” is the part that is buried in the “dust of the earth”, i.e., man’s physical body. Paul teaches that it is God’s purpose for His own that whether “we live or die we should live together with Christ”. At death the Christian's “earthly tent” is dissolved back into the earth from whence it came (2 Cor. 5:1), but the spiritual part of man, his self-consciousness (the soul) departs ‘to be with the Lord’ (2 Cor. 5:8). This is not a hard concept. ;)Lets make some comparisons to 1 Corinthians, same author talking to the same group of people.
1 Cor 15:14-20 And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up--if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable. But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.Later in the chapter...
1 Corinthians 15:51-54 Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed--in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible has put on incorruption, and this mortal has put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written: "Death is swallowed up in victory."The language in 1 Corinthians 15 is all about this wonderful stuff that happens at Christ's second coming.
1 Cor 15:22-23 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. But each one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are Christ's at His coming.Okay, in 2 Corinthians 5:1-8 Paul is talking about 3 states of being and makes a symbolic comparison with garments/tents.
2 Cor 5:1-8 For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed with our habitation which is from heaven, if indeed, having been clothed, we shall not be found naked. For we who are in this tent groan, being burdened, not because we want to be unclothed, but further clothed, that mortality may be swallowed up by life. Now He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who also has given us the Spirit as a guarantee. So we are always confident, knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. Paul has already made a discussion of present mortality, sleeping in the grave referring to death and then immortality imparted at the resurrection back in 1 Cor 15. The three states are present here as mortality (this present tent), sleeping in the grave (nakedness/unclothed) and resurrection (clothed from Heaven). In this current mortal body "we are absent from the Lord." When Paul says he wants to be absent from the body, he's referring to the current mortality. To be present with the Lord, is be in the immortal body, "to be further clothed," and this is imparted at the last trumpet. The assumption is that verse 8 implies an immediacy between "absent from the body" and "present with the Lord" and that this state occurs when you die. But all of Paul's attention, here-to-fore, is focused on that resurrection day, that is what he desires. When working through these verses it can be seen that when you rise at the resurrection you will be absent from this mortality, this current body, this current tent, and will instead be present with the Lord, clothed in immortality. "This mortal must put on immortality"

Wintermute
Nov 30th 2007, 08:31 AM
Why would a sanctified and perfected soul go to Hades?
Isaiah 33:14-15 The sinners in Zion are afraid; Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites: "Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?" He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, He who despises the gain of oppressions, Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes, Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed, And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:Why are the righteous going to experience everlasting burnings?

Pilgrimtozion
Nov 30th 2007, 08:55 AM
Isaiah 33:14-15 The sinners in Zion are afraid; Fearfulness has seized the hypocrites: "Who among us shall dwell with the devouring fire? Who among us shall dwell with everlasting burnings?" He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly, He who despises the gain of oppressions, Who gestures with his hands, refusing bribes, Who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed, And shuts his eyes from seeing evil:

Why are the righteous going to experience everlasting burnings?
You should read this verse in context:

13 Hear, you who are far off, what I have done;
and you who are near, acknowledge my might.
14 The sinners in Zion are afraid;
trembling has seized the godless:
"Who among us can dwell with the consuming fire?
Who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings?"
15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly,
who despises the gain of oppressions,
who shakes his hands, lest they hold a bribe,
who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed
and shuts his eyes from looking on evil,
16 he will dwell on the heights;
his place of defense will be the fortresses of rocks;
his bread will be given him; his water will be sure.

I don't see the problem.

Wintermute
Nov 30th 2007, 09:46 AM
You should read this verse in context:

13 Hear, you who are far off, what I have done;
and you who are near, acknowledge my might.
14 The sinners in Zion are afraid;
trembling has seized the godless:
"Who among us can dwell with the consuming fire?
Who among us can dwell with everlasting burnings?"
15 He who walks righteously and speaks uprightly,
who despises the gain of oppressions,
who shakes his hands, lest they hold a bribe,
who stops his ears from hearing of bloodshed
and shuts his eyes from looking on evil,
16 he will dwell on the heights;
his place of defense will be the fortresses of rocks;
his bread will be given him; his water will be sure.

I don't see the problem.
There isn't a problem. If you look at the fire of "hell," you will find it comes down from God out of heaven. So also the fire that destroyed Sodom came from God, rained from heaven, fire and brimstone, an example of eternal fire according to Jude. The three friends of Daniel are in the furnace and only the ropes burn. Moses is before a burning bush, yet the bush is unharmed. The Spirit at Pentecost manifests as fire. God repeatedly refers to Himself as fire, and even a consuming fire. Nadab and Abihu are killed by the fire of God for bringing unholy fire (very significant) into the temple. And we have the already quoted verse from Isaiah where the righteous can dwell with everlasting burnings. In my study of the fire of hell, what it actually is, turns out it is the immediate presence of God Himself, unveiled. To the wicked He is a consuming fire; but to the righteous that Fire is a fortress and refuge. The fire is eternal because it is referring to God. That is, the wicked are not currently "dead" burning in "hell." There is a time and place when they will experience this, but it isn't right now. 2 peter 3:7 "But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word, are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men." That's future, not present. When Israel comes out of Egypt (a kind of Armageddon when at the red sea, Revelation refers to the song of Moses for this reason) a pillar of fire is a protection to Israel and a problem for the Egyptians. When people see the Angel of the Lord, is it not significant that they remark that they saw God, yet lived!

The Hades that Christ went to is simply the grave. He came out from there just as everyone will. There was no lake of fire, as in judgment, for Him to go to.

losthorizon
Dec 1st 2007, 04:02 AM
...Paul has already made a discussion of present mortality, sleeping in the grave referring to death and then immortality imparted at the resurrection back in 1 Cor 15. The three states are present here as mortality (this present tent), sleeping in the grave (nakedness/unclothed) and resurrection (clothed from Heaven). In this current mortal body "we are absent from the Lord." When Paul says he wants to be absent from the body, he's referring to the current mortality. To be present with the Lord, is be in the immortal body, "to be further clothed," and this is imparted at the last trumpet. The assumption is that verse 8 implies an immediacy between "absent from the body" and "present with the Lord" and that this state occurs when you die. But all of Paul's attention, here-to-fore, is focused on that resurrection day, that is what he desires. When working through these verses it can be seen that when you rise at the resurrection you will be absent from this mortality, this current body, this current tent, and will instead be present with the Lord, clothed in immortality. "This mortal must put on immortality"

Methinks you doth protest too much. The fact that there is an intermediate state in man’s existence is beyond doubt. This same Paul you quote above plainly tells us in the letter to the Philippians,
"For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labor: yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am in a strait between the two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better." (1:21-23)Please hear what he says - if he were to die he would "depart." And where would he depart to? To the grave and soul-sleep as you insist? No - he would go “to be with Christ”. And where is Christ? He is in heaven at the “right hand of the Father”. If he were to die – Paul’s body would return to the dust from whence it came, i.e., his body would sleep in the earth awaiting the resurrection but Paul’s soul – his conciseness – would immediately go to “be with Christ” - "which is far better". Soul-sleep in a non-biblical doctrine that should be rejected for what it is - a non-biblical doctrine.

Steven3
Dec 1st 2007, 05:54 AM
Hi LH :)
Methinks you doth protest too much. The fact that there is an intermediate state in man’s existence is beyond doubt. This same Paul you quote above plainly tells us in the letter to the Philippians,
"For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labor: yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am in a strait between the two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better." (1:21-23)Anyone ever wondered why if Paul meant "and [immediately] be with Christ" he's so hung up on being raised in the same letter?

Philippians 3:10 that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

N.T. Wright explains this as a telescoped view. Which is reasonable considering that the person (Paul) is asleep in the middle.



Soul-sleep in a non-biblical doctrine that should be rejected for what it is - a non-biblical doctrine.Soul-sleep is a label thrown at Bible teaching by those who believe "soul-awakeness". In reality the label betrays it's own unscriptural nature. Souls die, the dead sleep. Souls don't sleep, because there is no soul when the breath has gone:

A + B = C
C - B = A

;)

losthorizon
Dec 1st 2007, 06:56 AM
Hi LH :)Anyone ever wondered why if Paul meant "and [immediately] be with Christ" he's so hung up on being raised in the same letter?

“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain…” – sounds pretty “instant" to me. Biblically, the intermediate state is instant. For the Christian today - upon death - the soul departs to be with the Lord – the body returns to the dust from whence it came. Easy (and biblical) concept.


Soul-sleep is a label thrown at Bible teaching by those who believe "soul-awakeness". In reality the label betrays it's own unscriptural nature. Souls die, the dead sleep. Souls don't sleep, because there is no soul when the breath has gone:
Soul-sleep remains what it has always been – non-biblical and should be rejected as one more in a long line of doctrines of men.

Steven3
Dec 1st 2007, 07:15 AM
Hi LH
“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain…” – sounds pretty “instant" to me. Biblically, the intermediate state is instant. For the Christian today - upon death - the soul departs to be with the Lord – the body returns to the dust from whence it came. Easy (and biblical) concept.Then if you insist that it must be immediate, one has to ask is this verse immediate too?

Hebrews 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,

Or do the dead sleep:

Ps 6:5 For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who will give you praise?

Acts 9:40 But Peter put them all outside, and knelt down and prayed; and turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up.

And boy was she furious with Peter!! :rolleyes:



Soul-sleep remains what it has always been – non-biblical and should be rejected as one more in a long line of doctrines of men.Did you miss the part where I said that "soul-sleep" was a false term invented by "soul-wakers" to get round the Bible having souls dieing and the dead sleeping?

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.


Ro 2:7 to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he will give eternal life;


1Co 15:53 For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality. 54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.”

God be with us
S.

losthorizon
Dec 1st 2007, 04:51 PM
...Then if you insist that it must be immediate, one has to ask is this verse immediate too?

Hebrews 9:27 And just as it is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment,

You’re still stumbling over your “materialism”, i.e., the notion that we are mortal and do not possess a “soul” that will inhabit eternity. When man dies (once) he does immediately come to judgment. Once we die our spirit is no longer bound by the materialist time-space restrictions of our physical world. We immediately enter into the eternal state – a state where “time is no more”.

Thus Paul correctly could proclaim - "To Live is Christ, To Die is Gain". When a Christian dies he/she goes immediately into the eternal timeless state and is with the Lord – eternally. The notion of “soul-sleeping” is simply the non-biblical doctrine of men and is to be rejected for what it is – an aberrant doctrine.

Steven3
Dec 4th 2007, 05:10 PM
Thus after death the soul goes to its bedchamber and to its peace, and while it is sleeping it does not realize its sleep, and God preserves indeed the awakening soul. God is able to awake Elijah, Moses, and others, and so control them, so that they will live. But how can that be? That we do not know; we satisfy ourselves with the example of bodily sleep, and with what God says: it is a sleep, a rest, and a peace. He who sleeps naturally knows nothing of that which happens in his neighbor's house; and nevertheless, he still is living, even though, contrary to the nature of life, he is unconscious in his sleep. Exactly the same will happen also in that life, but in another and a better way.*—"Auslegung des ersten Buches Mose," in Schriften, vol. 1, cols. 1759, 1760.


We should learn to view our death in the right light, so that we need not become alarmed on account of it, as unbelief does; because in Christ it is indeed not death, but a fine, sweet and brief sleep, which brings us release from this vale of tears, from sin and from the fear and extremity of real death and from all the misfortunes of this life, and we shall be secure and without care, rest sweetly and gently for a brief moment, as on a sofa, until the time when he shall call and awaken us together with all his dear children to his eternal glory and joy. For since we call it a sleep, we know that we shall not remain in it, but be again awakened and live, and that the time during which we sleep, shall seem no longer than if we had just fallen asleepYou’re still stumbling over your “materialism”, i.e., the notion that we are mortal and do not possess a “soul” that will inhabit eternity. When man dies (once) he does immediately come to judgment. Once we die our spirit is no longer bound by the materialist time-space restrictions of our physical world. We immediately enter into the eternal state – a state where “time is no more”

Isaiah 38:18 For Sheol does not thank you;
death does not praise you;
those who go down to the pit do not hope
for your faithfulness.

Ezek 13:19 You have profaned me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, putting to death souls who should not die and keeping alive souls who should not live, by your lying to my people, who listen to lies.

Luke 14:14 and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”

Luke 18:30 who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.”

Luke 20:35 but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage,

Phip 3:11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

.......and 1000 other verses....

losthorizon
Dec 5th 2007, 02:57 AM
Isaiah 38:18 For Sheol does not thank you;
death does not praise you;
those who go down to the pit do not hope
for your faithfulness.

Ezek 13:19 You have profaned me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, putting to death souls who should not die and keeping alive souls who should not live, by your lying to my people, who listen to lies.

Luke 14:14 and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”

Luke 18:30 who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.”

Luke 20:35 but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and to the resurrection from the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage,

Phip 3:11 that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

.......and 1000 other verses....
Again – do you agree with Martin Luther on everything he wrote? He wrote that Satan is a real live personal being and that hell is a real place of eternal torment reserved for the damned. Do you agree or disagree with him on those two issues (please answer this time)? Wasn’t Luther simply a mortal man who taught both truth and error, i.e., the error of soul-sleeping? The latter-day defenders of the error of soul-sleep include the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Christadelphians. I suspect you have more that just a passing fancy in at least one of the above and in the words of the Lord – “ye therefore do greatly err”.
And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err. (Mark 12:26-27)God is declared to be the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. When these words were spoken those three great men had already lived and long ago died. But Jesus plainly tells us that God was their God - why?? - because God is the God of the living. How could that be – because although the patriarchs had suffered physical death and their bodies rested in the earth their spirits were not dead (sleeping) but were in His care and keeping. They certainly were not “soul-sleeping” as Steven asserts - God is not the God of the soul-sleeper. No – their spirits were alive even as their bodies rested in the ground – and God was their God because He is the God of the living. The notion of soul-sleep is a non-biblical doctrine of men that should be rejected for what it is - a non-biblical doctrine.
"As long as (the soul) is in the body it exerts its own powers; but when it quits this prison-house it returns to God, whose presence, it meanwhile enjoys while it rests in the hope of a blessed Resurrection. This rest is its paradise. On the other hand, the spirit of the reprobate, while it waits for the dreadful judgment, is tortured by that anticipation." ~ John Calvin

Toolman
Dec 5th 2007, 02:49 PM
The latter-day defenders of the error of soul-sleep include the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Christadelphians. I suspect you have more that just a passing fancy in at least one of the above and in the words of the Lord – “ye therefore do greatly err”

Actually, the Church of England (Anglicans,one of the largest protestant denominations) have several theologians who support the ideas of "soul-sleep" and annihilation, John Stott (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Stott) probably being the most well known in evangelical circles.

Just FYI.

Steven3
Dec 5th 2007, 04:06 PM
Lost Horizon
I have to say I don't find the tone in the above post particularly attractive, or see why it is necessary.
The latter-day defenders of the error of soul-sleep include the Seventh-day Adventist Church, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Christadelphians. I suspect you have more that just a passing fancy in at least one of the above and in the words of the Lord – “ye therefore do greatly err”.Why would you need to "suspect" anything about me having "more than just a passing fancy" since, as you well know because you've brought it up before, a click on my profile shows that I attend a Christadelphian church (what's the bold for exactly?). This is no secret, I announced it on my first post (http://bibleforums.org/showpost.php?p=1375615&postcount=1) in the welcome thread. Am I not allowed to choose to find a church that agrees with my understanding of Scripture? I could quite happily fit in at an Anglican church if it would make you feel better.

But ultimately what church I attend is my decision, and if you have a personal problem with me because of which church I attend, then I'm very sorry :(, but I'm afraid that's your problem, not mine. I don't care what church you go to. Go, and be happy.



Again – do you agree with Martin Luther on everything he wrote? I wouldn't know since I don't know everything he wrote. For example I don't know what Luther believed about whether "the devil is a real live personal being and that hell is a real place of eternal torment reserved for the damned", but I'd be surprised if I did agree. Do I really have to know? (What's this got to do with the thread subject?) Posting in reply to Luther was simply for the benefit of anyone whose beliefs are influenced by "authorities" - since I know some people like to feel the comfort of earlier commentators. If they do or don't, great. But Martin Luther means less than zero to me. The fact that he's nearer scripture than Calvin on this occasion doesn't mean he would be on other subjects. And frankly I couldn't care less either way :). Which is why I replied to the quote of Luther with Bible verses. Because the Bible is the standard by which Paul says we should test all things.

FWIW, and as Toolman has indicated, here in the UK the mortality of man is mainstream - a substantial number of the more active members of my local Anglican, Methodist and Uniting Church congregations believe the same as Tyndale and Luther. Hasn't anyone wondered why the Alpha Course doesn't contain a chapter on heaven-going? As far as one can judge, it is primarily in North American Evangelical Protestantism where antipathy to the views of such as Stott and N.T. Wright is strongest, where mortality is ridiculed as "soul-sleep" (sic), and where it is classed a "world religion" ~ which really is an irony among ironies, since the true world-religions - Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Islam, Lamaism, shamanism, etc. - all distinguish themselves from Judeo-Christian belief in preaching the immortal soul, where "thou shalt not surely die" is the common denominator of those manmade religions. Perhaps it is the immortal soul that belongs here in "world religion", not Genesis, Isaiah, Ecclesiastes, Psalms, and Paul?


But enough of the beauty contest, back to the verses:

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

John 5:25 “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.

God bless
Steven

David Taylor
Dec 5th 2007, 09:45 PM
*********************
**Moderator Reminder**
*********************

Time for everyone to calm down and remove the heat that has been gradually building in this thread.

You guys get to pick....either choose yourselves to sprinkle a little water on the fire, and squelch the bites and jabs,

or

the big firetruck will be dispatched, and have to close the thread to eliminate the heated snippets.

Feel free to refamiliarize yourselves with board rule (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=59397) III-C:

c. Be gracious to other posters. No insults, flaming, name calling or personal attacks, etc.
When someone disagrees with you, by all means discuss it; but be slow to anger, and rather be eager to get into the Word and find the answers.



Just remember, being gracious to other posters, and being slow to anger never generate flames that need to be doused.
Dave Taylor, WR Moderator

Myqyl
Dec 5th 2007, 09:53 PM
Huge thread and I must admit to not having read it all... I'm going to dl it and read it on the plane tomorrow, but I would like to ask... If our souls are asleep when we die, how do we explain :

Luke 16:22
Luke 23:43
2Cor 5:8
Phil 1:23

???

If these have been addressed earlier, no need to repeat yourself... I'll see it tomorrow night :)

God bless all !

Myqyl

Alyssa S
Dec 5th 2007, 11:09 PM
Hi!
I wanted to jump in here and throw in some other people who support Conditionalism... Or Soul Sleep. I have not personally studied the writings of each of these Early Church Fathers, but I have read a very interesting paper of someone who has... and I wanted to place these here for everyone to consider.

I realize the Early Church Fathers were fallible men just as we are today... but it's interesting to note that the Early church, beginning with the Apostolic Fathers were in agreement that one did not die and go to Heaven... but awaited the resurrection on the Last Day.

Therefore, I think we need to be careful to conclude that the doctrine of "sleep" is a false one...especially when it was the original doctrine of these early church fathers. I admit that "majority" doesn't always prove right... but I think compared with the clear Scriptures we have, it is something that should not be overlooked...IMO.

No... I'm not in a cult... or a part of any false religion...:) I go to a non-denominational, fellowship church... who does NOT believe in soul sleep. But I don't agree with their theology on this and I think the Scriptures are pretty clear that the Resurrection of the Dead will only happen on the Last Day... and not any sooner!

God bless,
Alyssa

The following is by Dr. John H. Roller:

1) The Apostolic Fathers are those writers whose lifetimes overlapped with those of the Apostles, and who may therefore be supposed to have had personal knowledge of the Apostles’ teachings.

It is clear from this chart that Conditionalism was the original doctrine of the Early Church (A.D. 95-177), and that Naturalism was first introduced by Athenagoras of Athens, and popularized by Tertullian of Carthage, after whose time it rapidly became the predominant view, though there continued to be an outspoken minority of Conditionalists.

Clement of Rome
Ignatius of Antioch
Polycarp of Smyrna
Papias of Hierapolis
Writer(s) of Didache
Aristides of Athens
Quadratus of Athens
Mathetes
Barnabas of Alexandria
Hermas of Rome
Justin of Samaria
Tatian of Assyria
Theophilus of Antioch
Melito of Sardis
Polycrates of Ephesus
Irenaeus of Lyons

Reformation believers of Soul Sleep... not including all...
Martin Luther
John Wycliffe
William Tyndale
John Milton
John Darby

http://drjohn.blogster.com/doctrine_immortality_early.html

This is the article from which I got this info...if you want to check it out.

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 12:10 AM
Actually, the Church of England (Anglicans,one of the largest protestant denominations) have several theologians who support the ideas of "soul-sleep" and annihilation, John Stott (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Stott) probably being the most well known in evangelical circles.

Just FYI.
Toolman – there are theologian dissenters among all groups, but to keep the record straight – I would refer you to The Thirty-nine Articles of Religion produced by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer, Church of England, published - 1533. This document was also adopted by the Episcopal Church in the United States America (in 1801) and forms the 25 Articles of Religion written by John Wesley (Methodist).
“The Souls of them that depart this life do neither die with the bodies, nor sleep idle. They which say, that the souls of such as depart hence do sleep, being without all sense, feeling, or perceiving until the day of judgment, or affirm that the souls die with the bodies, and that at the last day shall be raised up with the same, do verily dissent from the right belief declared to us in Holy Scripture.” One can choose to believe that God is the God of the "soul sleeper" or the God of the "dead-soul" or one can choose to believe what the Bible teaches - that He is the God of the living.
And as touching the dead, that they rise: have ye not read in the book of Moses, how in the bush God spake unto him, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? He is not the God of the dead, but the God of the living: ye therefore do greatly err. (Mark 12:26-27)
Paul correctly proclaimed - "To Live is Christ, To Die is Gain". When a Christian dies he goes immediately into the eternal timeless state and is with the Lord – eternally. The notion of “soul-sleeping” is simply the non-biblical doctrine of men and is to be rejected.

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 12:25 AM
Lost Horizon
I have to say I don't find the tone in the above post particularly attractive, or see why it is necessary...

But ultimately what church I attend is my decision, and if you have a personal problem with me because of which church I attend, then I'm very sorry :(, but I'm afraid that's your problem, not mine. I don't care what church you go to. Go, and be happy.

Steven – in light of board rule III-C that has been pointed out – I will not respond to your post other than to say that my reference to the Seventh-day Adventist Church, the Jehovah's Witnesses, and the Christadelphians as adherents to the doctrine of soul-sleep was to contrast with those you have presented on your side of the pond that buy into that doctrine, i.e., on my side of the pond it is the three organizations listed above that are the principle purveyors of your doctrine.

The church you choose to associate with matters not at all to me – God allows such free-will decisions with the stipulation that we answer for our choices at a later date. :)

Toolman
Dec 6th 2007, 01:13 AM
Hi!
I wanted to jump in here and throw in some other people who support Conditionalism... Or Soul Sleep. I have not personally studied the writings of each of these Early Church Fathers, but I have read a very interesting paper of someone who has... and I wanted to place these here for everyone to consider.

I realize the Early Church Fathers were fallible men just as we are today... but it's interesting to note that the Early church, beginning with the Apostolic Fathers were in agreement that one did not die and go to Heaven... but awaited the resurrection on the Last Day.

Therefore, I think we need to be careful to conclude that the doctrine of "sleep" is a false one...especially when it was the original doctrine of these early church fathers. I admit that "majority" doesn't always prove right... but I think compared with the clear Scriptures we have, it is something that should not be overlooked...IMO.

No... I'm not in a cult... or a part of any false religion...:) I go to a non-denominational, fellowship church... who does NOT believe in soul sleep. But I don't agree with their theology on this and I think the Scriptures are pretty clear that the Resurrection of the Dead will only happen on the Last Day... and not any sooner!

God bless,
Alyssa

The following is by Dr. John H. Roller:

1) The Apostolic Fathers are those writers whose lifetimes overlapped with those of the Apostles, and who may therefore be supposed to have had personal knowledge of the Apostles’ teachings.

It is clear from this chart that Conditionalism was the original doctrine of the Early Church (A.D. 95-177), and that Naturalism was first introduced by Athenagoras of Athens, and popularized by Tertullian of Carthage, after whose time it rapidly became the predominant view, though there continued to be an outspoken minority of Conditionalists.

Clement of Rome
Ignatius of Antioch
Polycarp of Smyrna
Papias of Hierapolis
Writer(s) of Didache
Aristides of Athens
Quadratus of Athens
Mathetes
Barnabas of Alexandria
Hermas of Rome
Justin of Samaria
Tatian of Assyria
Theophilus of Antioch
Melito of Sardis
Polycrates of Ephesus
Irenaeus of Lyons

Reformation believers of Soul Sleep... not including all...
Martin Luther
John Wycliffe
William Tyndale
John Milton
John Darby

http://drjohn.blogster.com/doctrine_immortality_early.html

This is the article from which I got this info...if you want to check it out.




Among the early Church fathers and the early Christians there were various opinions on the issue of conditionalism/annihilation, universal reconciliation and eternal conscious torment.

The Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge (1908) by Schaff-Herzog says in volume 12, on page 96:

"In the first five or six centuries of Christianity there were six theological schools, of which four (Alexandria, Antioch, Caesarea, and Edessa, or Nisibis) were Universalist, one (Ephesus) accepted conditional immortality; one (Carthage or Rome) taught endless punishment of the wicked. Other theological schools are mentioned as founded by Universalists, but their actual doctrine on this subject is not known."

I believe the prevailing view amongst the early Church fathers, especially the greek fathers, was one of universal reconciliation of all things back to God.

But obviously conditionalism had a place also.

Toolman
Dec 6th 2007, 01:25 AM
Toolman – there are theologian dissenters among all groups, but to keep the record straight – I would refer you to The Thirty-nine Articles of Religion produced by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer, Church of England, published - 1533. This document was also adopted by the Episcopal Church in the United States America (in 1801) and forms the 25 Articles of Religion written by John Wesley (Methodist).
“The Souls of them that depart this life do neither die with the bodies, nor sleep idle. They which say, that the souls of such as depart hence do sleep, being without all sense, feeling, or perceiving until the day of judgment, or affirm that the souls die with the bodies, and that at the last day shall be raised up with the same, do verily dissent from the right belief declared to us in Holy Scripture.”

I understand. And that would be my comment to Steven that it appears to me that the position of annihilation is something new to the Church of England, perhaps he will comment on that.

Here is what the Church of England Doctrine Commission published in 1995:

The Church of England's Doctrine Commission reported in February 1995 that Hell is not eternal torment. The report, entitled "The Mystery of Salvation" states, "Christians have professed appalling theologies which made God into a sadistic monster. ... Hell is not eternal torment, but it is the final and irrevocable choosing of that which is opposed to God so completely and so absolutely that the only end is total non-being." (pg 199)

Church of England, "The Mystery of Salvation: The Doctrine Commission of the General Synod" (1995); Published by Church House Publishing, London, 1995; copyrighted by The Central Board of Finance of the Church of England, 1995, ISBN 0-7151-3778-6.

Alyssa S
Dec 6th 2007, 02:26 AM
Among the early Church fathers and the early Christians there were various opinions on the issue of conditionalism/annihilation, universal reconciliation and eternal conscious torment.

The Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge (1908) by Schaff-Herzog says in volume 12, on page 96:

"In the first five or six centuries of Christianity there were six theological schools, of which four (Alexandria, Antioch, Caesarea, and Edessa, or Nisibis) were Universalist, one (Ephesus) accepted conditional immortality; one (Carthage or Rome) taught endless punishment of the wicked. Other theological schools are mentioned as founded by Universalists, but their actual doctrine on this subject is not known."

I believe the prevailing view amongst the early Church fathers, especially the greek fathers, was one of universal reconciliation of all things back to God.

But obviously conditionalism had a place also.


Toolman... The Father's of the Alexandrian Church were the one's who believed ALL would be saved... and these people were in the second and third centuries.

The Apostolic Church that believed in Soul Sleep was BEFORE this...beginning at the time of the Apostles in the first century. The list of names that I gave in the last post is not the same as these fellows here that are Universalists.:

The following early Fathers of the Church are said to have taught that all will finally be saved.

· Pantaenus; Clement of Alexandria (http://www.romancatholicism.org/clement-apokatastasis.htm); Origen (http://www.romancatholicism.org/origen-apokatastasis.htm); Athanasius; Didymus the Blind; Macarius of Egypt; Gregory Thaumaturgus; Ambrose; Ephraim; John Chrysostum; Gregory of Nyssa (http://www.romancatholicism.org/nyssa-apokatastasis.htm); Gregory of Nazianzus; Jerome of Bethlehem; Evagrius Ponticus (http://www.romancatholicism.org/evagrius-apokatastasis.htm); Titus of Bastra; Asterius of Amasea; Cyril; Methodius of Tyre; Pamphilius Eusibius; Hillary of Poitiers; Victorinus; Macrina the Younger; Dionysius the Areopagite; John Cassian; Maximus the Confessor (http://www.romancatholicism.org/maximos-apokatastasis.htm); Proclus of Constantinople; Peter Chrysologus; Diodorus of Tarsus; Stephen bar Sudaili.

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 02:57 AM
"And when he had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the word of God, and for the testimony which they held: And they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth? And white robes were given unto every one of them; and it was said unto them, that they should rest yet for a little season, until their fellowservants also and their brethren, that should be killed as they were, should be fulfilled." (Rev 6: 9-11)
"The bodies of men, after death, return to dust, and see corruption: but their souls, which neither die nor sleep, having an immortal subsistence, immediately return to God who gave them: the souls of the righteous, being then made perfect in holiness, are received into the highest heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies. And the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torment and outer darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day." ~ WESTMINSTER CONFESSION OF FAITH "When, then, is there left to call the mortal body, except that which was shaped, that is, the flesh, of which it is also said that God will make it to live? It is this which dies and is decomposed, but not the soul nor the spirit." (St. Irenaeus, Against Heresies)

Wintermute
Dec 6th 2007, 03:00 AM
Huge thread and I must admit to not having read it all... I'm going to dl it and read it on the plane tomorrow, but I would like to ask... If our souls are asleep when we die, how do we explain :

Luke 16:22
Luke 23:43
2Cor 5:8
Phil 1:23

???

If these have been addressed earlier, no need to repeat yourself... I'll see it tomorrow night :)

God bless all !

MyqylPhil 1:23 and 2 Cor 5:8 have basically the same explanation, that I've already given before. But just go back and read 1 Corinthians 15 carefully as well as 2 Corinthians 5:1-7, Paul isn't contradicting himself. Being with Christ rather than being in the present mortality is what he desires, but he explains what and when being with the Lord is, at the last trumpet, the coming of Christ.

In regard to Luke 23:43: Based on the history of crucifixion and the Bible account, the thief on the cross did not die that same day. Typically a crucifixion would take days before the convict would finally expire. This is the reason for the centurion's surprise and subsequent cutting into the side of Christ; he didn't expect Christ to be dead. The legs of the convicts were broken so they wouldn't get away. John 19:31 suggests that they were taken down from the crosses for the period of the Sabbath on request of the Jews. Further Christ states to Mary on Sunday morning that he had not yet ascended to the Father, therefore she was not to touch Him. Later that day, he invites the apostles to touch His body indicating that in the intervening time He finally did ascend to the Father. The actual way the verse would read in the original Greek would be something like this:

And Jesus said to him assuredly I say to you today you will be with Me in Paradise.

The original Greek doesn't even have spaces, it's just the words running all together so the supplied punctuation in this case suggests an immediacy that isn't supported by the evidence of other scriptures on the topic. It's like this:

A woman, without her man, is nothing.
A woman, without her, man is nothing.

Reads quite differently depending on how you punctuate.

Luke 16:22 is a parable about the unbelief of the Jews. Lazarus is talked about in this parable. So, go read the account about the death of Lazarus. What does Christ say about it when he actually died. John 11:11-14 "Our friend Lazarus sleeps, but I go that I may wake him up...Lazarus is dead. In verse 43 Lazarus is called forth from the grave, not down from Heaven. If you take the parable literally then Hell is within speaking distance from Heaven and when we die we all go to Abraham's bosom. Further when Christ talks with Martha about Lazarus the following is said: Jesus said to her, "Your brother will rise again." Martha said to Him, "I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day."

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 03:14 AM
Phil 1:23 and 2 Cor 5:8 have basically the same explanation, that I've already given before. But just go back and read 1 Corinthians 15 carefully as well as 2 Corinthians 5:1-7, Paul isn't contradicting himself. Being with Christ rather than being in the present mortality is what he desires, but he explains what and when being with the Lord is, at the last trumpet, the coming of Christ.

"For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live in the flesh, this is the fruit of my labor: yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am in a strait between the two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better." (1:21-23)I think you completely misunderstand what the Apostle says - please listen closely to his words - if he were to die he would "depart." And where would he depart to? To the grave and soul-sleep as you insist? No - he would go immediatly “to be with Christ”. And where is Christ? He is in heaven at the “right hand of the Father”. If he were to die – Paul’s body would return to the dust from whence it came, i.e., his body would sleep in the earth awaiting the resurrection but Paul’s soul – his conciseness – would immediately go to “be with Christ” - "which is far better".
"When, then, is there left to call the mortal body, except that which was shaped, that is, the flesh, of which it is also said that God will make it to live? It is this which dies and is decomposed, but not the soul nor the spirit." (St. Irenaeus, Against Heresies)

Wintermute
Dec 6th 2007, 03:24 AM
In regard to Revelation 6:9-11. Compare the following: Genesis 4:8-10 Now Cain talked with Abel his brother; and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" He said, "I do not know. Am I my brother's keeper?" And He said, "What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood cries out to Me from the ground.

This is symbolic language. In Revelation 6, there is an alter. And based on the blood and death associated with it, it would be an alter of sacrifice. In Genesis, the dispute between Cain and Abel was over an offering of Sacrifice.

In the Temple system, the alter of sacrifice is in the courtyard, and is symbolic of the sacrifice of Christ, that took place on earth. The blood of a sacrifice was poured at the foot of the alter. What Revelation is saying here is that these martyrs, slain for the word of God, are covered by the sacrifice of Christ. This is very important because in the record of history, the Christian martyrs were declared to be heretics, condemned to receive damnation. But God is saying that that is not true. Again, if we take this literally, the dead are cloistered up in Heaven somewhere under an alter. Note verse 11 ..."and it was said to them that they should rest a little while longer". It is no more literal than Abel actually speaking to God from the dirt. It is symbolic language.

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 03:34 AM
In regard to Revelation 6:9-11. Compare the following: Genesis 4:8-10 Now Cain talked with Abel his brother; and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" He said, "I do not know. Am I my brother's keeper?" And He said, "What have you done? The voice of your brother's blood cries out to Me from the ground.

This is symbolic language. In Revelation 6, there is an alter. And based on the blood and death associated with it, it would be an alter of sacrifice. In Genesis, the dispute between Cain and Abel was over an offering of Sacrifice.

Regardless of the symbolism employed throughout the book of Revelation the Revelator saw and heard what he recorded - he saw “the souls of them that were slain for the word of God” and he heard them cry out “with a loud voice, saying, How long, O Lord, holy and true, dost thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth”. The biblical fact remains, those faithful who “die in the Lord” go immediately “to be with Christ” just as Paul stated and just as John witnessed in heaven.

Wintermute
Dec 6th 2007, 03:38 AM
In Ezekiel 37:1-14 God talks with the prophet about the restoration of Israel. He uses the resurrection as a symbol or analogy of how this will take place. The account is one that compares with Genesis were God breaths into man and he becomes and living soul.
The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. And He said to me, "Son of man, can these bones live?" So I answered, "O Lord God, You know." Again He said to me, "Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, 'O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord God to these bones: "Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the Lord." ' " So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and suddenly a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to bone. Indeed, as I looked, the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them. Also He said to me, "Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, 'Thus says the Lord God: "Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live." ' " So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army. Then He said to me, "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, 'Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!' Therefore prophesy and say to them, 'Thus says the Lord God: "Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken it and performed it," says the Lord.' "

Wintermute
Dec 6th 2007, 03:40 AM
John also saw a lamb that was slain with seven horns, at the beginning of the account of the seals. That lamb is Christ, and He most certainly doesn't have 7 literal horns sticking out of His head.

Toolman
Dec 6th 2007, 03:52 AM
Toolman... The Father's of the Alexandrian Church were the one's who believed ALL would be saved... and these people were in the second and third centuries.

The Apostolic Church that believed in Soul Sleep was BEFORE this...beginning at the time of the Apostles in the first century.

Actually the apostles held to universal reconciliation :)


The list of names that I gave in the last post is not the same as these fellows here that are Universalists.:

Many on your list are 2nd century and beyond. The few 1st century are often quoted by all 3 groups, so I'm not sure about your sources, but would be willing to observe which writings you speak of.

Nevertheless, both conditionalism and UR held a place in the early Church, as well as eternal torment. All 3 positions had their supporters (and still do today).

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 04:03 AM
John also saw a lamb that was slain with seven horns, at the beginning of the account of the seals. That lamb is Christ, and He most certainly doesn't have 7 literal horns sticking out of His head.
But do you deny that Jesus Christ was literally in heaven where John saw and heard Him just as John literally saw and heard the souls of them that were slain for the word of God.

Wintermute
Dec 6th 2007, 04:13 AM
But do you deny that Jesus Christ was literally in heaven where John saw and heard Him just as John literally saw and heard the souls of them that were slain for the word of God.I guess John wasn't on the Isle of Patmos then.;)

losthorizon
Dec 6th 2007, 04:23 AM
I guess John wasn't on the Isle of Patmos then.;)
Of course he was there - on the Isle of Patmos - according to the text. Did he see and hear Christ in heaven - according to the same text? :)

Steven3
Dec 7th 2007, 06:22 AM
Hi Toolman
I understand. And that would be my comment to Steven that it appears to me that the position of annihilation is something new to the Church of England, perhaps he will comment on that.Yes, it would appear to be relatively new. When I was a child our local vicar believed in heaven going, the new vicar apparently doesn't.

The statement from the Church of England Doctrine Commission 1995 which you've quoted is the key formal statement on conditionalism, but the change has building for 2 generations. e.g.:

1943-1945 "Towards the Conversion of England"

1963 "Honest to God" by the Anglican Bishop of Woolwich John A.T. Robinson

etc.

But there have always been Anglicans who have shared Paul's teaching that if the dead are not raised then those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. Which demonstrates that Paul did not take the statement that Abraham and the patriarchs live "to God" as meaning that they are alive in heaven.

It's perhaps (comment of a friend of mine) that as Christianity has become rarer in England and the vast majority are agnostic the Church no longer feels the need or has the authority to present either heaven or hell (i.e. inferno, not Sheol) as the destination of everyone. Which if so might explain why in the US, which is still a Christian country it is considered reasonable that no-one just dies. Everyone must go to either heaven or hell.

Meanwhile John's vision of souls under the altar and the parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus are still enough for many people to overrule the teaching of Paul above.
God bless
Steven

Steven3
Dec 7th 2007, 06:47 AM
Huge thread and I must admit to not having read it all... I'm going to dl it and read it on the plane tomorrow, but I would like to ask... If our souls are asleep when we die, how do we explain :

Luke 16:22
Luke 23:43
2Cor 5:8
Phil 1:23

???

If these have been addressed earlier, no need to repeat yourself... I'll see it tomorrow night :)

God bless all !

Myqyl

Hi Myqyl,
These 4, and the 4 or 5 others verses used to teach the immortality of the soul such as "in my Father's house are many mansions", "souls under the altar", "God is not the God of the dead but of the living", Enoch and Elijah, etc. can be searched on the Search function looking for keywords.
Happy reading :)

but seeing as you're on the plane and won't be online... first read Wintermute's excellent post, then a few confirming comments:

Luke 16:22 - the answer is in who the "five brothers in my father's house" are. This will unlock the parable.

Luke 23:43 - the answer is in "when" the thief expected Jesus to "remember" him in the previous verse, 42. The KJV and most English versions follow the Latin word order in 43, but by classical Greek word order "today" belongs to "I tell you". "Remember" means a future resurrection Luke 14:14.

2Cor 5:8 - the key is that Paul doesn't want to be "naked, unclothed" (= disembodied) so 2Co5 dovetails perfectly with, and agrees with, 1Co15:23.

Phil 1:23 - the key is Paul doesn't say it is "immediate", otherwise he could not have the wish to "attain" the resurrection, or be clothed with a body like Christ's in 3:19. Again it agrees with 1Co15.

Rev 6:9-11 - only a vision. Souls would not literally be stored under an altar.

Mark 12:27 - "God is not the God of the dead but of the living" is explained best in Luke where it is rendered "live to God", meaning their names are in the Book of Life. This means that Lazarus, Tabitha, and those others raised by Elijah, Christ, Peter and Paul were not brought up/down from another world, but were simply, as Jesus says "asleep".

Samuel's ghost - Saul saw nothing, so the witch was as the Greek LXX translates "a ventriloquist"

Enoch - Enoch was moved (Hebrew, Greek) so he could not be found, but did not ascend to heaven (John 3:13) and later died (Rom5:14, Heb11:13).

These are the main ones. Against these are the rest of the Bible, 1000s of verses.
God bless
Steven

losthorizon
Dec 8th 2007, 01:51 AM
...…here in the UK the mortality of man is mainstream - a substantial number of the more active members of my local Anglican, Methodist and Uniting Church congregations believe the same as Tyndale and Luther. Hasn't anyone wondered why the Alpha Course doesn't contain a chapter on heaven-going?

Question for you, Steven – which side of the pond (UK or US) did the Westminster Confession of Faith originate? Isn’t it a fact the faiths you mention above – “Anglican, Methodist and Uniting Church” are merely a shell of what they were in the past?
"Although the light of nature, and the works of creation and providence, do so far manifest the goodness, wisdom, and power of God, as to leave men inexcusable; yet are they not sufficient to give that knowledge of God, and of his will, which is necessary unto salvation; therefore it pleased the Lord, at sundry times, and in divers manners, to reveal himself, and to declare that his will unto his Church…

The bodies of men, after death, return to dust, and see corruption: but their souls, which neither die nor sleep, having an immortal subsistence, immediately return to God who gave them: the souls of the righteous, being then made perfect in holiness, are received into the highest heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies. And the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torment and outer darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day." ~ WESTMINSTER CONFESSION OF FAITH

Steven3
Dec 8th 2007, 06:16 AM
How many judgments does a soul (http://cf.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H05315&Version=kjv) have to go through?

Myqyl
Dec 8th 2007, 10:11 AM
Hi Myqyl,
These 4, and the 4 or 5 others verses used to teach the immortality of the soul such as "in my Father's house are many mansions", "souls under the altar", "God is not the God of the dead but of the living", Enoch and Elijah, etc. can be searched on the Search function looking for keywords.
Happy reading :)

but seeing as you're on the plane and won't be online... first read Wintermute's excellent post, then a few confirming comments:

<...clip...>

These are the main ones. Against these are the rest of the Bible, 1000s of verses.
God bless
Steven

Thank you... These are all very good points and I'll take some time and consider them all. I believe your explainations are quite possible... We can not know (and were likely not meant to know) where the pause in the sentance was... Most of the rest seem like very valid points, although I believe the Revelations passage needs to be considered more closely. It was indeed a vision. A vision given to John by God... We're not talking about something he saw cause he ate a bad mushroom. And keeping souls "under an altar" may be symbolic (or maybe not), but they were souls... and they weren't asleep. However, you have given me much to think about...

But I have a question...

It concerns Matthew 17

1 After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves.
2 And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light.
3 And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him.

I find no where that says Elijah died... In fact he seems to have been assumed into heaven, as happened several times in Scripture. So I can see how he got there.

But Moses died. He was died for quite some time before this happened. How is it that he was conversing with Jesus? Am I missing something here?

Thank you for your fine teaching.

Wintermute
Dec 8th 2007, 01:01 PM
Yeah, regarding Enoch, Elijah and Moses I view these to be in Heaven. It appears there is also a group of individuals that were taken to Heaven at the resurrection of Christ.
Jude 1:9 Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, "The Lord rebuke you!"

1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.It appears that Michael (I believe a reference to Christ) resurrected Moses. The mount of transfiguration with Moses and Elijah encouraging Jesus represents two classes of people at the coming Christ. Those resurrected (Moses) and those that will never see death (Elijah).
Hebrews 11:5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, "and was not found, because God had taken him"; for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

Matthew 27:52-53 ...and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the graves after His resurrection, they went into the holy city and appeared to many.

losthorizon
Dec 8th 2007, 02:36 PM
How many judgments does a soul (http://cf.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=H05315&Version=kjv) have to go through?
"And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" Hebrews 9:27

You didn't answer the question - which side of the pond (UK or US) did the Westminster Confession of Faith originate? The same document that proclaims the biblical truth - "And the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torment and outer darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day."

losthorizon
Dec 8th 2007, 02:44 PM
...It appears that Michael (I believe a reference to Christ) resurrected Moses.

Are you suggesting that Michael the Archangel (a created being) is one and the same as Jesus the Christ who is God Incarnate – the Eternal?
God the Father says to the Son "your throne O’ God is forever and ever." (Heb. 1:8)

Wintermute
Dec 8th 2007, 05:07 PM
Are you suggesting that Michael the Archangel (a created being) is one and the same as Jesus the Christ who is God Incarnate – the Eternal?
God the Father says to the Son "your throne O’ God is forever and ever." (Heb. 1:8)I'm am suggesting that Michael the Archangel is a title of Christ. In no way am I suggesting the He is a created being whatsoever. The Angel of the Lord is referred to multiple times in the old testament. And in these instances it is God referred to.
Exodus 3:2-6 And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.

Joshua 5:13-15 And it came to pass, when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and, behold, there stood a man over against him with his sword drawn in his hand: and Joshua went unto him, and said unto him, Art thou for us, or for our adversaries? And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? And the captain of the LORD'S host said unto Joshua, Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so.

Genesis 16:10-13 And the angel of the LORD said unto her, I will multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude. And the angel of the LORD said unto her, Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the LORD hath heard thy affliction. And he will be a wild man; his hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him; and he shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren. And she called the name of the LORD that spake unto her, Thou God seest me: for she said, Have I also here looked after him that seeth me?

Judges 13:21-22 But the angel of the LORD did no more appear to Manoah and to his wife. Then Manoah knew that he was an angel of the LORD. And Manoah said unto his wife, We shall surely die, because we have seen God.

Myqyl
Dec 8th 2007, 07:42 PM
Yeah, regarding Enoch, Elijah and Moses I view these to be in Heaven. It appears there is also a group of individuals that were taken to Heaven at the resurrection of Christ. It appears that Michael (I believe a reference to Christ) resurrected Moses. The mount of transfiguration with Moses and Elijah encouraging Jesus represents two classes of people at the coming Christ. Those resurrected (Moses) and those that will never see death (Elijah).

I have a couple of issues with this. Michael is an angel, not Jesus. He can not resurrect anyone. And the referrances you give about resurrection are all written AFTER the transfiguration and they all use the future tense "WILL", or refer to a resurrection that took place at the Cruxifiction, several years after the transfiguration. Maybe I'm missing something... Could you enlighten me?

Thank you and God bless.

Wintermute
Dec 8th 2007, 10:27 PM
The word angel simply means messenger, one who is sent.
1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.

John 5:26-29 For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man. Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth--those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation. In one place it speaks of the dead raised at the voice of the archangel, in another it speaks of the voice of the resurrection being that of Christ.

Regarding the transfiguration.
Matthew 16:27-28 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. Assuredly, I say to you, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom."

next three verses...

Matthew 17:1-3 Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. In other words the transfiguration was a representation, a taste, of what the coming of Christ and His kingdom would be like. Remember how Paul speaks of those that will not precede the ones sleeping the grave:
1 Thessalonians 4:15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep.There are two groups at the coming of Christ, those alive that will not taste death, and those asleep in the grave that will be resurrected. I believe that Moses and Elijah were representatives of these two classes at the coming of Christ. (And because of this verse by Paul there were Thessalonians that believed Christ would come in their lifetime, the notion of which he corrected in 2 Thessalonians. There were events that had to transpire first.)
2 Thessalonians 2:1-3 Now, brethren, concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our gathering together to Him, we ask you, not to be soon shaken in mind or troubled, either by spirit or by word or by letter, as if from us, as though the day of Christ had come. Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,

Myqyl
Dec 8th 2007, 11:20 PM
I believe that Moses and Elijah were representatives of these two classes at the coming of Christ.

Ummm, I'm sorry to be so thick here, but... Are you saying the transfiguration didn't happen and was symbolic or something? I guess my question right now boils down to this, do you believe that Jesus went on a mountain with 3 of His followers and there He was transformed and Elijah and Moses appeared and spoke with Him?

I guess if the answer to that is yes, then I would need to ask, do you believe Moses died?

And if that is also a yes, I guess I'd ask for Scripture stating that Moses had been raised from the dead, an event that if it occured would certainly have been profound enough to have a clear, unambigous declaration. Your quote concerning the angel Michael, even if I accepted that this named angel was in fact Jesus (which I most certainly do not), states that He (he) contended with the devil over Moses body. It neither says nor implies resurrection...

I don't mean to be disagreeable about this, but I think it's a serious question that needs some consideration.

May God bless and guide you.

Mike

Wintermute
Dec 9th 2007, 12:23 AM
I believe it was literal event, a real happening. But was given to strengthen Christ in what he was about to do. And to strengthen the Apostles when they would see their Messiah on the cross. It also served as an example of the coming of Christ at the end of time.

I absolutely believe Moses died. It was after his death that later, as Christ came to resurrect him, Satan contended with Christ over what he was about to do, over the body as it says. Christ did not enter into arguement, but rebuked him. The presence of Moses at the transfiguration confirms that Moses was indeed alive and that that is what transpired in the account given in Jude. It may seem like reading between the lines, but that's all there is.

Myqyl
Dec 9th 2007, 01:22 AM
I believe it was literal event, a real happening. But was given to strengthen Christ in what he was about to do. And to strengthen the Apostles when they would see their Messiah on the cross. It also served as an example of the coming of Christ at the end of time.

I absolutely believe Moses died. It was after his death that later, as Christ came to resurrect him, Satan contended with Christ over what he was about to do, over the body as it says. Christ did not enter into arguement, but rebuked him. The presence of Moses at the transfiguration confirms that Moses was indeed alive and that that is what transpired in the account given in Jude. It may seem like reading between the lines, but that's all there is.

Thank you! I now see where our views part company. Perhaps seeing the verse about Archangel Michael contending with the devil over the body of Moses is out of context... I will reread that passage and see if somewhere in the chapter it is suggested that Moses is resurrected by Jesus disguised as Michael.

One point of a purely logical issue... To say that you can prove that the dead are asleep by saying that Moses was at the transfiguration so he MUST have been resurrected otherwise he would have been asleep is just a little bit twisted logically. Perhaps Moses was NOT resurrected and he was at the transfiguration because the dead are not asleep... You are trying to prove the foundation of your theroy by saying that it must be true or else your theroy would have to be wrong... So when you say :


The presence of Moses at the transfiguration confirms that Moses was indeed alive

... that's flawed. Sorry.

May God guide us.

Wintermute
Dec 9th 2007, 02:44 AM
My comments about the transfiguration are not meant as proof of the state of the dead but rather the result of an understanding based on other scriptures.

Steven3
Dec 9th 2007, 04:01 AM
Hi Myqyl :)
Thank you... These are all very good points and I'll take some time and consider them all. I believe your explainations are quite possible... We can not know (and were likely not meant to know) where the pause in the sentance was... Most of the rest seem like very valid points, although I believe the Revelations passage needs to be considered more closely. It was indeed a vision. A vision given to John by God... We're not talking about something he saw cause he ate a bad mushroom. And keeping souls "under an altar" may be symbolic (or maybe not), but they were souls... and they weren't asleep. However, you have given me much to think about...That's a very civil response and an absolute pleasure to discuss. It really doesn't matter if we agree, just as long as we can share ideas.


But I have a question...

It concerns Matthew 17

1 After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves.
2 And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light.
3 And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him.

I find no where that says Elijah died... In fact he seems to have been assumed into heaven, as happened several times in Scripture. So I can see how he got there.

But Moses died. He was died for quite some time before this happened. How is it that he was conversing with Jesus? Am I missing something here?I apologise for having missed Matt17 on the list of the dozen 'usual suspects' ;)

Again there are several threads which will come up on a search here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=102961), and here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=105877). The key however is Jesus' description of the experience as a "vision" (check Youngs or Blueletterbible for how orama is used in the NT).

As regards Elijah there's a poll thread (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=101274)discussing his post-taking up letter. But the real key again is John 3:13.
God bless
Steven

losthorizon
Dec 9th 2007, 04:17 AM
I'm am suggesting that Michael the Archangel is a title of Christ. In no way am I suggesting the He is a created being whatsoever. The Angel of the Lord is referred to multiple times in the old testament. And in these instances it is God referred to.
Michael the Archangel is mentioned five times in the Bible but he is never identified or equated with Jesus Christ or the Godhead. The notion that Jesus and Michael are the same person has no basis in Scripture.

Steven3
Dec 9th 2007, 04:23 AM
Hello Lost Horizon
You didn't answer the question - which side of the pond (UK or US) did the Westminster Confession of Faith originate? The same document that proclaims the biblical truth - "And the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torment and outer darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day."

The answer is this side of the pond. The Westminster Confession dates from 1646 (wheras the United Kingdom dates from 1707). At that period, as can be seen from the above excerpt, very few Protestants knew to distinguish Hinnom/Gehenna and Sheol/Hades in the Bible, and consequently created a doctrine that hybridized both into one location and had judgments at both ends - one dividing of righteous and wicked immediately on death, and then another upon resurrection.

Now, if there are going to be any further questions directed at me personally may I please request that you notify me by PM so I can give them due attention.

Thank you
Steven

losthorizon
Dec 9th 2007, 04:44 AM
Hello Lost Horizon

The answer is this side of the pond. The Westminster Confession dates from 1646 (wheras the United Kingdom dates from 1707). At that period, as can be seen from the above excerpt, very few Protestants knew to distinguish Hinnom/Gehenna and Sheol/Hades in the Bible, and consequently created a doctrine that hybridized both into one location and had judgments at both ends - one dividing of righteous and wicked immediately on death, and then another upon resurrection.

Now, if there are going to be any further questions directed at me personally may I please request that you notify me by PM so I can give them due attention.

Thank you
Steven
Lol - are you suggesting that biblical scholars in England in 1646 did not have an excellent understanding of Greek and Hebrew? To avoid a PM, let me answer – of course they had many competent linguistic scholars and they correctly understood that “the souls of the wicked are cast into hell, where they remain in torment and outer darkness, reserved to the judgment of the great day." They most certainly were not referring to the garbage dump outside Jerusalem - right?

Just because it disputes your doctrine of soul-sleep does not negate the truth presented in the Westminster Confession of Faith. So I think we can both agree that soul-sleep was rejected on your side on the pond before this side even became an independent nation. ;)

Wintermute
Dec 9th 2007, 08:32 AM
It really doesn't matter if we agree, just as long as we can share ideas.Does it really matter? In one respect it doesn't. That is, if it is just a matter of people going straight to Heaven at death versus later at the resurrection, sure it doesn't matter.

But personally, I don't think that is all that is at stake. Referring to Saul and his seeking out of the witch of Endor
1 Chronicles 10:13-14 So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD, even against the word of the LORD, which he kept not, and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it; But he did not inquire of the Lord; therefore He killed him, and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse.I think many people have an intuitive understanding that there is something wrong if they have visitations from the dead. Sorcery, witchcraft, mediums are condemned in the Bible. It is for good reason that the witch of Endor feared for her life. While the Saul himself did not see the appearance of Samuel, the witch gave a description of what she saw. Did she actually see something? Some would say no, I personally think yes. And this communion was the last straw in the eyes of God. Note also that what the witch sees is coming up from the ground, and further she's a witch; there is no way under the sun that God would allow His prophet to be used by a witch for the purposes of communication. That was not Samuel.

I know people personally that have had visitations from the "dead." One of these individuals was harassed frequently. After explaining the state of the dead to her, it became clear that this harassment was not the dead, but evil spirits/angels. My church prayed for her, I prayed for her, and she has never since had this problem.

The foundational concept upon which people believe they can communicate through mediums or directly with the dead has it's roots in the doctrine of the immortality of the soul. Sure there may be charlatan mediums, that are merely pulling a ruse on people, but there is real stuff out there were people see their departed loved ones, or what appears and sounds to be; and mediums that are doing more than just cold reading. I believe it makes a marked difference for the devil in being able to pull this deception off, when people are convinced as such. God doesn't want people knocking on Satan's doorstep.

There is also the matter of the justice of God. There is a litany of atheists in this world that view the concept of God as abhorant precisely due to the idea that if they die, they could spend eternal ages burning away in Hell. The very ideas that are used in some pulpits to scare people into the church, turn people away as well. And I think that's understandable. What kind of God based on your rejection of Him would torch you forever more? Such an idea makes God out to be the worst of despots ever known.

Toolman
Dec 9th 2007, 04:52 PM
There is also the matter of the justice of God. There is a litany of atheists in this world that view the concept of God as abhorant precisely due to the idea that if they die, they could spend eternal ages burning away in Hell. The very ideas that are used in some pulpits to scare people into the church, turn people away as well. And I think that's understandable. What kind of God based on your rejection of Him would torch you forever more? Such an idea makes God out to be the worst of despots ever known.

I'm interested in pursuing this idea if that's ok.

Are you saying that annihilation from existence is not a fearful thing?

Wintermute
Dec 9th 2007, 05:10 PM
It certainly is to be feared by the wicked. The destiny of the wicked is laid out in the Bible so there is no mistake on the matter. But while God is a God of justice, He is also a God of love. There is a large difference between eternal torture (and for what purpose?) and being brought to a finite end.

Wintermute
Dec 9th 2007, 05:14 PM
The very fact that Satan is in existence indicates God has born long with sin. The history of this world, and the fact that sin leads to the crucifixion and persecution of the sinless Christ is the reason it must be removed from the universe. Satan sealed his fate at the cross as is referred to in Revelation 12.

Toolman
Dec 9th 2007, 05:27 PM
It certainly is to be feared by the wicked. The destiny of the wicked is laid out in the Bible so there is no mistake on the matter.

So your statement:

The very ideas that are used in some pulpits to scare people into the church, turn people away as well

also applies to the doctrine of annihilation. The doctrine is a doctrine of fear, you agree, so I think this point is mute.

There are atheists who also speak of this doctrine with disgust that God would wipe people out so IMO this point points to either side with equal force. Some believe that annihilation is more fearful than continued existence. The very idea of not existing brings fear to the heart.


But while God is a God of justice, He is also a God of love. There is a large difference between eternal torture (and for what purpose?) and being brought to a finite end

Well, I personally believe that annihilation falls short of God's love and I see His love and justice working hand in hand to bring about a greater purpose but that is because I hold a different position than either annihilation or eternal torment.

That said, both positions, eternal torment and annihilation, present God's justice at odds with His love, instead of seeing them as equal attributes of the same being that are working together instead of opposition to one another.

God is Holy. He cannot do anything that is unholy. It would be against His character to do so.

God is Just. He cannot do anything that is unjust. It would be against His character to do so.

God is Love. He cannot do anything that is unloving. It would be against His chacter to do so.

So EVERYTHING God does is holy, just and loving. His attributes are not in opposition to one another but work together for the same great purpose.

Steven3
Dec 10th 2007, 01:51 AM
Hi Wintermute :)
Does it really matter? In one respect it doesn't. That is, if it is just a matter of people going straight to Heaven at death versus later at the resurrection, sure it doesn't matter.

Wintermute, appreciate your points. Personally I read the witch of Endor as ventriloquist (which is what the Greek OT says), but either way.

I said that it doesn't matter to Myqyl in the happy context of for once at least being able to discuss like adults, and get beyond the old chestnuts (Lazarus in Abraham's bosom, thief on the cross, Enoch and Elijah, etc). Ultimately you're right that it does matter to separate out the Bible text from the syncretism in historical Christianity. For all the reasons you've given and more. Only God has immortality. Man has to attain it.
God bless
Steven

btw - I've added five refs from the Mishnah to the Gehenna thread here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?p=1466600#post1466600).

Wintermute
Dec 10th 2007, 03:57 AM
Hi Wintermute :)

Wintermute, appreciate your points. Personally I read the witch of Endor as ventriloquist (which is what the Greek OT says), but either way.

I said that it doesn't matter to Myqyl in the happy context of for once at least being able to discuss like adults, and get beyond the old chestnuts (Lazarus in Abraham's bosom, thief on the cross, Enoch and Elijah, etc). Ultimately you're right that it does matter to separate out the Bible text from the syncretism in historical Christianity. For all the reasons you've given and more. Only God has immortality. Man has to attain it.
God bless
Steven

btw - I've added five refs from the Mishnah to the Gehenna thread here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?p=1466600#post1466600).
It has been a pleasure discussing this topic with you as well. :pp

brakelite
Dec 10th 2007, 08:33 PM
Hi Wintermute
Great to see and read a good logical and scriptural understanding of this most important issue.
As you said, there is much more at stake than simply a heaven/hell/sleep issue.
As to the earlier posts on MIchael the Archangel, there are sound biblical reasons for accepting Jesus and Michael as being one and the same, however this is perhaps deserving of its own thread. Suffice to say that as the president of the US is Commander in Chief of the armed forces doesn't mean the president has to be a soldier, nor does being Archangel mean Michael is a created angel.

Regards and God bless
Brakelite

Steven3
Dec 11th 2007, 02:00 AM
Hi Toolman
So your statement:


The very ideas that are used in some pulpits to scare people into the church, turn people away as well

also applies to the doctrine of annihilation. The doctrine is a doctrine of fear, you agree, so I think this point is mute. I'm not sure if Wintermute's point is mute. If we look at medieval depections of inferno, or Buddhist murals of the nine hells etc., the idea of eternal torture is a very powerful threat. While annihilation is less powerful. And that is illustrated by some of the antipathy towards the idea from immortal-soul believing Christians. Some, probably (I'd hope) a small minority, but some nevertheless, believe that death, or even resurrection and second death, is not punishment enough, that justice can only be served on their neighbours and work colleagues by an infinity of "torment" in the most literal flesh-tearing and scorching terms.

Wheras most atheists I know would be quite happy to be left dead. There's not much threat - and after all this life isn't so attractive that everyone desperately wants to survive it.


God is Just. He cannot do anything that is unjust. It would be against His character to do so.As illustrated in Deut 4 "keeping mercy unto the thousandth generation, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin; and that will by no means clear the guilty; "

Much as God is just we already know the fate of two men - Cain and Judas, because their fates are discussed in the NT. Whether they will literally be raised as Paul believed in Acts 24:15, or whether God finds raising them a second death superfluous, is one thing (I have to say there are too many Acts 24:15 type verses to avoid taking Paul at face value), but to say God will raise Cain and Judas and have them enter the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world goes against 1John (on Cain) and Christ (on Judas).
God bless
Steven

Myqyl
Dec 11th 2007, 02:08 AM
Hi Myqyl :)That's a very civil response and an absolute pleasure to discuss. It really doesn't matter if we agree, just as long as we can share ideas.

I apologise for having missed Matt17 on the list of the dozen 'usual suspects' ;)

Again there are several threads which will come up on a search here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=102961), and here (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=105877). The key however is Jesus' description of the experience as a "vision" (check Youngs or Blueletterbible for how orama is used in the NT).

As regards Elijah there's a poll thread (http://bibleforums.org/showthread.php?t=101274)discussing his post-taking up letter. But the real key again is John 3:13.
God bless
Steven

VERY interesting points here. All I'm allowed to say is that I don't agree and I have Scriptural reasons, but I'm not free to discuss it anymore. Very interesting slant though. I'll need to look at this even closer.

God bless.

Toolman
Dec 11th 2007, 02:36 AM
Hi ToolmanI'm not sure if Wintermute's point is mute. If we look at medieval depections of inferno, or Buddhist murals of the nine hells etc., the idea of eternal torture is a very powerful threat. While annihilation is less powerful.

Depends on who you ask I suppose. I have heard some philosophers comment that it would be more cruel to be snuffed out than to continue to exist, even in torment.

But, nonetheless, Wintermutes point is mute because the same accusation he places against the eternal torment camp is placed against the annihilationist camp. The doctrine is to cause fear (which should lead to repentance), so either camp could receive that accusation.


And that is illustrated by some of the antipathy towards the idea from immortal-soul believing Christians. Some, probably (I'd hope) a small minority, but some nevertheless, believe that death, or even resurrection and second death, is not punishment enough, that justice can only be served on their neighbours and work colleagues by an infinity of "torment" in the most literal flesh-tearing and scorching terms.

I think most evangelicals who hold to eternal torment do so because they believe that is what scripture teaches, not because they have a blood lust.

Same with the annihilationist camp. Its not that they have some blood lust for God to scorch people to death but because they believe scripture teaches just that.


Wheras most atheists I know would be quite happy to be left dead. There's not much threat - and after all this life isn't so attractive that everyone desperately wants to survive it.

I've never known an atheist who looked forward to death, unless they were under mental illness.


As illustrated in Deut 4 "keeping mercy unto the thousandth generation, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin; and that will by no means clear the guilty; "

I agree under the covenant of law that mercy was only given to the innocent.

Thank God for the new covenant where mercy is given to all, especially the guilty.

Romans 11:32 - For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all

[QUOTE=Steven3;1467708]Much as God is just we already know the fate of two men - Cain and Judas, because their fates are discussed in the NT. Whether they will literally be raised as Paul believed in Acts 24:15, or whether God finds raising them a second death superfluous, is one thing (I have to say there are too many Acts 24:15 type verses to avoid taking Paul at face value), but to say God will raise Cain and Judas and have them enter the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world goes against 1John (on Cain) and Christ (on Judas).
God bless
Steven

I understand your position on that and respectfully and vehemently disagree. I find that position falling short of the love of God and the atoning work of Christ and the mission for which He was sent.

I believe scripture declares He will actually succeed in what He was sent to do (to seek and to save that which was lost) and will not lose a single one.

But that discussion is for perhaps another thread.

Steven3
Dec 11th 2007, 12:01 PM
Hi Toolman :)
Depends on who you ask I suppose. I have heard some philosophers comment that it would be more cruel to be snuffed out than to continue to exist, even in torment. That's quite possible, sounds like the sort of thing Sartre might say. Out of interest, can you cite a partiucular reference.
I've never known an atheist who looked forward to death, unless they were under mental illness. Really? That surprises me. I've known many middle-aged and elderly people who were quite happy to drift into darkness, to cease to exist. I'm not just refering to experience here in Europe, but in Asia too.

Some, probably (I'd hope) a small minority, but some nevertheless, believe that death, or even resurrection and second death, is not punishment enough,...I think most evangelicals who hold to eternal torment do so because they believe that is what scripture teaches, not because they have a blood lust.Yes the majority do, which is why I said "a small minority", nevertheless there's the taint of something very human in Dark Age and medieval development of the inferno doctrine. One only needs to look at artwork from that period to see the psychology.



I understand your position on that and respectfully and vehemently disagree. I find that position falling short of the love of God and the atoning work of Christ and the mission for which He was sent.

I believe scripture declares He will actually succeed in what He was sent to do (to seek and to save that which was lost) and will not lose a single one.

But that discussion is for perhaps another thread.Not like you to be vehement old chap ;) usually very mild. I think, to my satisfaction anyway, that 1 John explains, by means of the example of Cain, why Christ's atonement is not forced on people against their will/inclination, but you're right, such discussion belongs on another thread.
God bless and thanks for the post!
Steven

Toolman
Dec 11th 2007, 03:18 PM
Hi Toolman :)That's quite possible, sounds like the sort of thing Sartre might say. Out of interest, can you cite a partiucular reference.Really?

Its been quite some time since I've looked into the doctrine of annihilation but let me look back at some of my sources and I'll see if I can find the particular ones.


That surprises me. I've known many middle-aged and elderly people who were quite happy to drift into darkness, to cease to exist. I'm not just refering to experience here in Europe, but in Asia too.

That could very well be true. I'm sure each person's experience would dictate.
But they won't be drifting off to darkness according to annihilation doctrine but will be burned alive until ash, after a possible time of torment.


Yes the majority do, which is why I said "a small minority", nevertheless there's the taint of something very human in Dark Age and medieval development of the inferno doctrine. One only needs to look at artwork from that period to see the psychology.

I definitely will not disagree with that.

I don't see a ton of difference there though between annihilation doctrine, except in duration of time. The same torment and inferno occurs just its duration is not as long.


Not like you to be vehement old chap ;) usually very mild.

I simply meant passionate :)
I am passionate about God's character and Christ's mission.


I think, to my satisfaction anyway, that 1 John explains, by means of the example of Cain, why Christ's atonement is not forced on people against their will/inclination, but you're right, such discussion belongs on another thread.
God bless and thanks for the post!
Steven

I will state, just for the record, that I do not believe Christ's atonement is forced on people against their will. Christ's atonement is given by grace and God graciously does not leave mankind to His own will but actively works in man to bring about a change of will... by grace not force.

For the record :)

David Taylor
Dec 11th 2007, 04:15 PM
Just for the record, I want to commend you guys in this thread.

There have been some stormy weather going on outside of this thread lately involving some RCC threads, and a few folks resistance to following the intent of the forum guidelines and how this forum is used.

You guys in here, have been having a model example about how topics that are of a WR nature, and which don't fall within the mainstream Protestant view, can still be discussed in a manner that is edifying, uplifting, and thoughtful of one another.

You guys are doing great in here.

(and while I personally myself, don't believe in either SoulSleep or Annhiliationism), you guys are doing a great job of discussing both; without attempting to advance them, nor chip away at the mainstream Protestant view of them either.

Kudos and rep points to you guys!!

Steven3
Dec 12th 2007, 09:14 AM
Hi Toolman :)

That surprises me. I've known many middle-aged and elderly people who were quite happy to drift into darkness, to cease to exist. I'm not just refering to experience here in Europe, but in Asia too.That could very well be true. I'm sure each person's experience would dictate. But they won't be drifting off to darkness according to annihilation doctrine but will be burned alive until ash, after a possible time of torment.I don't know of any annihilationist doctrine that includes a possible time of torment, beyond the gnashing of teeth from jealousy and regret as recorded in Luke 13:28 "In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out." If that's torment, then yes, but it's no worse than Peter's "wept bitterly".

Also there are different annihilation doctrines taking different verses as their key reference point:

"they shall not rise" (Is26:14) ~ not raised & judged
"Gentiles.... who malign you" (1Pe4) ~ few raised & judged
"all who are in the graves" (John 5:29) ~ all raised & judgedPersonally on an emotional level I find it rather surplus for Christ to raise anyone to a second death and would like to read verses like Acts 24:15 as figurative ~ but then again, unfortunately there seem to be too many of them to do that honestly. But anyway, back to the core subject - eternality. Two verses at least give us a very clear picture of Gehenna being an annihilation rather than a torment.

1. Mark 9:45 Christ's quote of Is66:24 "Gehenna....... where their worm dieth not", and back in Isaiah the worms may not die, but the Armageddon corpses the worms feed on definitely do. This verse (in Mark) was taken out of Isaiah context in the medieval period to construct a teaching about the worms (Latin larvae) being a debased form of soul in the lowest level of hell. But in the sense Jesus quotes it, in Isaiah, this is an annihilationist verse.

2. Matt 10:28 is the other Gehenna-annihilationist verse: "And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna". This corresponds with the Mishnah uses of Gehenna, and the Acts 24:15/John5:29/Dan12:2 resurrection-to-judgment verses. The body may be killed, but final "destruction" (=what's the difference between annihilation and destruction?) of the soul is when Gehenna comes.

3. Matt 25:41, on the surface is against Is66:24 and Matt 10:28 because of the inference in that "the devil and his angels" are indestructible (?), therefore“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."" means that human souls cannot be destroyed by God as Matt 10:28 says. The logic is a bit shaky of course because putting a destructable object (human soul) and an indestructible object (fallen angel) in the same fire doesn't have to produce the same result. Plus that fact that it's highly coloured apocalyptic context anyway, and the angels of the devil may in fact be those goats, just as the children of the devil were the Pharisees. It's not a great verse from which to infer a doctrine of eternal torture.

God bless
Steven

Toolman
Dec 12th 2007, 03:47 PM
Hi Toolman :)I don't know of any annihilationist doctrine that includes a possible time of torment, beyond the gnashing of teeth from jealousy and regret as recorded in Luke 13:28 "In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God but you yourselves cast out." If that's torment, then yes, but it's no worse than Peter's "wept bitterly".

I have read annihilationist's use of these verses in their doctrine of a time of torment before annihilation:

Luke 12:47-48 - And that servant who knew his master’s will, and did not prepare himself or do according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes. But he who did not know, yet committed things deserving of stripes, shall be beaten with few. For everyone to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more.

Matthew 18:34 - And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.

Revelation 14:10 - The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:



Also there are different annihilation doctrines taking different verses as their key reference point:

"they shall not rise" (Is26:14) ~ not raised & judged
"Gentiles.... who malign you" (1Pe4) ~ few raised & judged
"all who are in the graves" (John 5:29) ~ all raised & judged

Yes, I have seen this pointed out amongst annihilationists.



Personally on an emotional level I find it rather surplus for Christ to raise anyone to a second death and would like to read verses like Acts 24:15 as figurative ~ but then again, unfortunately there seem to be too many of them to do that honestly. But anyway, back to the core subject - eternality. Two verses at least give us a very clear picture of Gehenna being an annihilation rather than a torment.

1. Mark 9:45 Christ's quote of Is66:24 "Gehenna....... where their worm dieth not", and back in Isaiah the worms may not die, but the Armageddon corpses the worms feed on definitely do. This verse (in Mark) was taken out of Isaiah context in the medieval period to construct a teaching about the worms (Latin larvae) being a debased form of soul in the lowest level of hell. But in the sense Jesus quotes it, in Isaiah, this is an annihilationist verse.

2. Matt 10:28 is the other Gehenna-annihilationist verse: "And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in Gehenna". This corresponds with the Mishnah uses of Gehenna, and the Acts 24:15/John5:29/Dan12:2 resurrection-to-judgment verses. The body may be killed, but final "destruction" (=what's the difference between annihilation and destruction?) of the soul is when Gehenna comes.

No problem for me, as I do not hold to the doctrine of eternal conscious torment.

As an evangelical universalist I believe there will be a time of judgement of the unbeliever which has the purpose, as all God's judgements do, of leading to repentance/faith and "destroying" that which is contrary to Him.


3. Matt 25:41, on the surface is against Is66:24 and Matt 10:28 because of the inference in that "the devil and his angels" are indestructible (?), therefore“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."" means that human souls cannot be destroyed by God as Matt 10:28 says. The logic is a bit shaky of course because putting a destructable object (human soul) and an indestructible object (fallen angel) in the same fire doesn't have to produce the same result. Plus that fact that it's highly coloured apocalyptic context anyway, and the angels of the devil may in fact be those goats, just as the children of the devil were the Pharisees. It's not a great verse from which to infer a doctrine of eternal torture.

I have heard both annihilationists and universalists use the text below to show that Satan is destructible:

Ezekiel 28:17-19
Your heart became proud
on account of your beauty,
and you corrupted your wisdom
because of your splendor.
So I threw you to the earth;
I made a spectacle of you before kings.

By your many sins and dishonest trade
you have desecrated your sanctuaries.
So I made a fire come out from you,
and it consumed you,
and I reduced you to ashes on the ground
in the sight of all who were watching.

All the nations who knew you
are appalled at you;
you have come to a horrible end
and will be no more.'


Just more food for thought :)

Steven3
Dec 13th 2007, 02:17 AM
Hi T :)
Just more food for thought :)A sensible presentation of verses. I'd agree with you, it's foolish to base too much literally on either parables or prophecies written in symbolic apocalyptic language. As far as I can see the torment/beating language only occurs in allegorical context. When we have a straight narrative context - as in Luke, it is simply tears of regret and jealousy, nothing too sulphuric. And the most stinging of all punishments is in Matt 7 "many will say 'Lord, Lord'....... I never knew you". Yet "depart from me" is still "depart from me". It's still a judgment:

Matt 7:21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ 23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’

God bless
Steven

Toolman
Dec 13th 2007, 02:41 AM
Hi T :)A sensible presentation of verses. I'd agree with you, it's foolish to base too much literally on either parables or prophecies written in symbolic apocalyptic language. As far as I can see the torment/beating language only occurs in allegorical context. When we have a straight narrative context - as in Luke, it is simply tears of regret and jealousy, nothing too sulphuric. And the most stinging of all punishments is in Matt 7 "many will say 'Lord, Lord'....... I never knew you". Yet "depart from me" is still "depart from me". It's still a judgment:

God bless
Steven

No doubt about it. I think anyone who teaches that scripture does not speak of a judgement is on shaky ground. Now whether that judgement is eternal torment, annihilation or a limited judgement that brings about repentence is the question that drives the 3 groups.

But we can definitely all preach that yes, there is a judgement that is coming and the wise will die to self now and be placed in the One to whom is our refuge.

Not to mention that the earliest creeds of the Church also agree of a judgement:

Apostles Creed
believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.
and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord.
who was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit
born of the Virgin Mary.
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried.
He descended into hell.
On the third day he rose again from the dead.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand
of God the Father Almighty.
From thence he shall come again to judge the living and the dead.
I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.

Nicene Creed
We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary,
and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.

We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come.
Amen.

brakelite
Dec 15th 2007, 02:20 AM
So your statement:

The very ideas that are used in some pulpits to scare people into the church, turn people away as well

also applies to the doctrine of annihilation. The doctrine is a doctrine of fear, you agree, so I think this point is mute.

There are atheists who also speak of this doctrine with disgust that God would wipe people out so IMO this point points to either side with equal force. Some believe that annihilation is more fearful than continued existence. The very idea of not existing brings fear to the heart.



Well, I personally believe that annihilation falls short of God's love and I see His love and justice working hand in hand to bring about a greater purpose but that is because I hold a different position than either annihilation or eternal torment.

That said, both positions, eternal torment and annihilation, present God's justice at odds with His love, instead of seeing them as equal attributes of the same being that are working together instead of opposition to one another.

God is Holy. He cannot do anything that is unholy. It would be against His character to do so.

God is Just. He cannot do anything that is unjust. It would be against His character to do so.

God is Love. He cannot do anything that is unloving. It would be against His chacter to do so.

So EVERYTHING God does is holy, just and loving. His attributes are not in opposition to one another but work together for the same great purpose.

I think the justice of God is the key issue. I'm posting on that in controversial issues now cause it is a little away from the OP here, but you yourself mentioned justice. Does not the scripture say that Jesus died for the ungodly, the just for the unjust? What was the punishment Jesus suffered? Was it not death? Not eternal torment? The wages of sin is death. The wicked are not given eternal life, that is a gift for the redeemed.To claim that the wicked are forever tormented is to claim that they, like the redeemed, are immortal. Death is the scriptural and just punishment for rebellion. Even human laws allow for capital punishment for treason, but who would dare suggest torturing them till they die. Are we more just than God?

Regards
Brakelite

Steven3
Dec 15th 2007, 07:34 AM
Hi Toolman
Yes. So then we need to look at what the NT describes as the fate of those judged as "goats/wicked". There would be about 30 verses on that subject I think. Do any of the 30 or so verses indicate a Last Day / Resurrection Day repentance being accepted?

Brakelite
Good points.

I personally think, looking at Gregory of Nyssa and so many since, that universalism generally originated as an a by-product of immortal-soulism clashing with the problem of a loving God tormenting souls for ever, and a universal purgatory process, universal repentance, etc, being constructs to deal with that immortal-soulism generated problem. Though I realise that's not the case today, some universalists recognise bible teaching on the unconscious state, but do not, ultimately recognise Matt10:28 style "can destroy the soul" mortality. Is that a fair observation?
Steven

Toolman
Dec 15th 2007, 03:53 PM
Hi Toolman
Yes. So then we need to look at what the NT describes as the fate of those judged as "goats/wicked". There would be about 30 verses on that subject I think. Do any of the 30 or so verses indicate a Last Day / Resurrection Day repentance being accepted?

Yes, but it is quite a lengthy subject. The best resources I can suggest on biblical universalism are these:

The Evangelical Universalist - by Gregory MacDonald (http://www.amazon.com/Evangelical-Universalist-Gregory-MacDonald/dp/1597523658/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964557&sr=1-1)
The One Purpose of God: An Answer to the Doctrine of Eternal Punishment - by Jan Bonda (Dutch reformed pastor.. pronounced "Yawn") (http://www.amazon.com/One-Purpose-God-Doctrine-Punishment/dp/0802841864/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964608&sr=1-1)
The Inescapable Love of God - by Thomas Talbott (http://www.amazon.com/Inescapable-Love-God-Thomas-Talbott/dp/1581128312/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964682&sr=1-1)
The Restitution of All Things - by Andrew Jukes (http://www.amazon.com/Restitution-All-Things-Andrew-Jukes/dp/0910424659)
(Also available online here):
http://tgulcm.tripod.com/cu/jukes2.html

For those truly interested in understanding the position of biblical universalism these volumes would be an excellent foundation.


Brakelite
Good points.

I personally think, looking at Gregory of Nyssa and so many since, that universalism generally originated as an a by-product of immortal-soulism clashing with the problem of a loving God tormenting souls for ever, and a universal purgatory process, universal repentance, etc, being constructs to deal with that immortal-soulism generated problem. Though I realise that's not the case today, some universalists recognise bible teaching on the unconscious state, but do not, ultimately recognise Matt10:28 style "can destroy the soul" mortality. Is that a fair observation?
Steven

Biblical universalism did not originate as a by-product of anything. It is the teaching of scripture. I can post literally dozens upon dozens of scriptures speaking of the restoration of all things, the reconciliation of all things, Christ the Saviour of all men, Christ the Saviour of the world, God's love for His enemies, Christ's mission to save the lost, His ability not to lose a single one the Father has given Him, etc.
Make no mistake, the universal saving work of Christ can be clearly demonstrated from scripture.

And if we are going to use statements like "a loving God tormenting souls for ever" then be prepared for the same type of statements to come back like "a loving God who burns people alive". Like I said that shoe will fit on either foot.
Would a loving God burn people alive? (I'm only demonstrating how that type of statement falls apart under your doctrine).

Annihilationism grew out of man's justice. But this is not God's justice. Annihilationist do not ultimately recognize that Christ will actually be successful in what He was sent to do and will not fail.. He will actually save that which was lost (all of it not just a portion) for He is truly the Saviour of all men.

1 Timothy 4:10 - (and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.

Steven3
Dec 16th 2007, 01:23 AM
Hi Toolman :)
Yes, but it is quite a lengthy subject. The best resources I can suggest on biblical universalism are these:

The Evangelical Universalist - by Gregory MacDonald (http://www.amazon.com/Evangelical-Universalist-Gregory-MacDonald/dp/1597523658/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964557&sr=1-1)
The One Purpose of God: An Answer to the Doctrine of Eternal Punishment - by Jan Bonda (Dutch reformed pastor.. pronounced "Yawn") (http://www.amazon.com/One-Purpose-God-Doctrine-Punishment/dp/0802841864/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964608&sr=1-1)
The Inescapable Love of God - by Thomas Talbott (http://www.amazon.com/Inescapable-Love-God-Thomas-Talbott/dp/1581128312/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/105-3353908-0619613?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1188964682&sr=1-1)
The Restitution of All Things - by Andrew Jukes (http://www.amazon.com/Restitution-All-Things-Andrew-Jukes/dp/0910424659)
(Also available online here):
http://tgulcm.tripod.com/cu/jukes2.html

For those truly interested in understanding the position of biblical universalism these volumes would be an excellent foundation.I'll have a browse on the online material, thanks :)



I personally think, looking at Gregory of Nyssa and so many since, that universalism generally originated as an a by-product of immortal-soulism clashing with the problem of a loving God tormenting souls for ever, and a universal purgatory process, universal repentance, etc, being constructs to deal with that immortal-soulism generated problem. Though I realise that's not the case today, some universalists recognise bible teaching on the unconscious state, but do not, ultimately recognise Matt10:28 style "can destroy the soul" mortality. Is that a fair observation?
StevenBiblical universalism did not originate as a by-product of anything. It is the teaching of scripture. Sorry, by that comment I was specifically referring to Gregory of Nyssa, that universalism generally originated as an a by-product of immortal-soulism (I coincidentally had someone quoting Gregory of Nyssa at me the other day!), that clearly isn't your case, which is what makes this side thread interesting :)


I can post literally dozens upon dozens of scriptures speaking of the restoration of all things, the reconciliation of all things, Christ the Saviour of all men, Christ the Saviour of the world, God's love for His enemies, Christ's mission to save the lost, His ability not to lose a single one the Father has given Him, etc.
Make no mistake, the universal saving work of Christ can be clearly demonstrated from scripture. Yes I understand that - unfortunately I come from a different perspective whereby I see the phrase "all things" as primarily being creation language (either relating to the restoration/reconciliation of creation, or the new creation being "before" the old). But that's getting off topic, and would require a new thread.


And if we are going to use statements like "a loving God tormenting souls for ever" then be prepared for the same type of statements to come back like "a loving God who burns people alive". Like I said that shoe will fit on either foot.
Would a loving God burn people alive? (I'm only demonstrating how that type of statement falls apart under your doctrine).You're absolutely correct, it's only a question of degree. But the difference in degree is substantial - eternity in the fire versus seconds in the fire. I will admit that I have great difficulty in taking the Gehenna verses literally as even a few seconds in a fire is troubling to my liberal Anglican tendencies. Unfortunately however the Luke 13 regret/tears verse is in a bit of a minority of one against all the fire verses which makes wriggling out of the Gehenna verses more difficult :). I'm hoping Christ will declare "oh that was just hyperbole", but it has to be said that the OT and NT track record of judgment was painfully real.


Annihilationism grew out of man's justice. But this is not God's justice. That's no more always true than my Gregory of Nyssa observation. I'd agree it could be, but in more cases annihilationism arises from simply taking "destroy the soul" "they shall not rise" etc at face value

Annihilationist do not ultimately recognize that Christ will actually be successful in what He was sent to do and will not fail.. He will actually save that which was lost (all of it not just a portion) for He is truly the Saviour of all men. Well, clearly the difference is a different understanding of what Christ was sent to do. And whether "all things" mean "all things that ever existed" or "all things that survive". "All things" clearly doesn't include some things (sin, death, "the devil", thistles, malaria, bilharzia, etc.), so do "the wicked" of the "resurrection of condemnation" John 5:29 belong with the thistles and malaria or with those who "enter into the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world"?
1 Timothy 4:10 - (and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe.Christ did save all men, but that by no means means that all will be saved - see NT tenses in usage of "save/saved". In 1Tim4:10 what does "especially" (Greek malista μαλιστα (http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D %2364758) entry in Liddle Scott) mean? It's clearly making some kind of contrast between all men (whom Christ did save, if they make their salvation sure, if they take hold of that salvation), and in 1Tim4:10 μαλιστα (http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D %2364758) "especially", "particularly", "more so", "rather" those who believe is within normal classical Greek usage.

btw - It's a pleasure talking intelligently with you, as I say I think to define whether "all things" means "all things that ever existed" or not would require a separate thread.
God bless
Steven

Toolman
Dec 16th 2007, 04:06 PM
Sorry, by that comment I was specifically referring to Gregory of Nyssa, that universalism generally originated as an a by-product of immortal-soulism (I coincidentally had someone quoting Gregory of Nyssa at me the other day!), that clearly isn't your case, which is what makes this side thread interesting :)

Aw, I see that now. Thanks for the clarification.

One thing I will point out about Gregory. Let's not forget that he, particularly, was called "the father of orthodoxy" by the early church, being one of the Cappadocian Fathers (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cappadocian_Fathers) and a major former and contributor to the Nicene Creed.

Just something I think worth noting about how the early Church felt about Gregory and his theology.


Yes I understand that - unfortunately I come from a different perspective whereby I see the phrase "all things" as primarily being creation language (either relating to the restoration/reconciliation of creation, or the new creation being "before" the old). But that's getting off topic, and would require a new thread.

I understand.

Simply taken at face value (like you take the "destroy souls", "will not rise" verses) is my position and both of our taking of these verses has an effect on our theology, i.e. what we believe about the character of God and the mission of Christ.

I believe, of course, that my position is the more biblically accurate, the more God elevating and the most merciful and loving view.


You're absolutely correct, it's only a question of degree. But the difference in degree is substantial - eternity in the fire versus seconds in the fire.

There is no doubt there is a difference by degree, which does mean they share SOME commonality, which effects, shapes and forms how you present God's character/nature, his ability to achieve His will and what His mercy really means.

IMO, that is the failing of the annihilationist doctrine, i.e. how it ultimately effects theology (our understanding of God's character and power).


I will admit that I have great difficulty in taking the Gehenna verses literally as even a few seconds in a fire is troubling to my liberal Anglican tendencies. Unfortunately however the Luke 13 regret/tears verse is in a bit of a minority of one against all the fire verses which makes wriggling out of the Gehenna verses more difficult :). I'm hoping Christ will declare "oh that was just hyperbole", but it has to be said that the OT and NT track record of judgment was painfully real.

I can fully understand and appreciate that and respect that you allow what you understand of the scripture to be your authority, instead of your "wishes".

As far as judgement is concerned, I just want to state for the record that the biblical universalist position is that judgement is a reality and that judgement has come and will come.

BUT the biblical universalist is consistent with both OT and NT in that judgement (God's Law) always has the distinct purpose of driving men to Christ in repentance and faith. God does not change and His "destructive" power is to destroy that which is a result of the fall and to redeem that which is from creation, that which is good.

Isaiah 26:9 - When your judgments come upon the earth, the people of the world learn righteousness.

Lamentations 3:31-33 - For men are not cast off by the Lord forever. Though he may punish cruelly, yet he will have compassion in the fullness of his love; he does not willingly afflict or punish any mortal man.



That's no more always true than my Gregory of Nyssa observation. I'd agree it could be, but in more cases annihilationism arises from simply taking "destroy the soul" "they shall not rise" etc at face value

I agree. That was my "tit for tat" regarding your comment and was probably not a good form of expression.


Well, clearly the difference is a different understanding of what Christ was sent to do.

I agree. My understanding and position has a very high regard for the mission of Christ, believing he will accomplish these "face value" statements:

Luke 19:10 - for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

John 6:37-39 - All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day.

1 John 2:2 - And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.

Romans 5:18 - So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.

Romans 11:32 - For God has shut up all in disobedience so that He may show mercy to all.


Of course, either position can be defended thru scripture. My position results because I believe God actually is Love, especially towards His enemies, and can do nothing that is not loving (his justice and love are not in opposition but work together for the same purpose... redemption) and that Christ is able to actually to save everyone that He desires to and God is actually able to accomplish His will and His plan of redemption will not fail but succeed.


And whether "all things" mean "all things that ever existed" or "all things that survive". "All things" clearly doesn't include some things (sin, death, "the devil", thistles, malaria, bilharzia, etc.), so do "the wicked" of the "resurrection of condemnation" John 5:29 belong with the thistles and malaria or with those who "enter into the kingdom prepared from the foundation of the world"?

I believe Colossians 1 gives us that answer as all things created by God in Christ. Not things that resulted from the fall into sin. All things that God created that were effected by the fall of man into sin will be redeemed.

Obviously redemption is the removal of that which is contrary to God. But, just as our "old man" was destroyed with Christ at the cross and we (our "new man") were redeemed, the same is for all created by God.

Colossians 1:15-20 - He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist. And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.

For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.



Christ did save all men, but that by no means means that all will be saved - see NT tenses in usage of "save/saved". In 1Tim4:10 what does "especially" (Greek malista μαλιστα (http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D %2364758) entry in Liddle Scott) mean? It's clearly making some kind of contrast between all men (whom Christ did save, if they make their salvation sure, if they take hold of that salvation), and in 1Tim4:10 μαλιστα (http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D %2364758) "especially", "particularly", "more so", "rather" those who believe is within normal classical Greek usage.

This moves into an area of eschatology but my position is one that those who believe (in life) have a position with Christ, in the resurrection, that those who do not believe, in life, do not receive, i.e. reigning and ruling with Christ, judging angels, etc. in a time of millinial kingdom. That is how they are "especially" saved.
But that does not discount that the others are not saved. Saved is saved and if someone is burned alive eternally (annihilated) they most assuredly are not saved.


btw - It's a pleasure talking intelligently with you, as I say I think to define whether "all things" means "all things that ever existed" or not would require a separate thread.
God bless
Steven

More than likely to keep this thread on track to get to deep into would certainly require significant time and posts.

I will conclude with this point.

To take the annihilationist verses (destroy soul, will not rise, etc.) at "face value" has an effect on our theology, i.e. what we believe about the character, power and person of God.

He becomes someone who does not have the ability to actually save ALL of His creation (He is not omnipotent). He is not able to accomplish His will, that all men be saved and repent (He is therefore not sovereign). His mercy is in opposition to His righteousness, they create a duality and dichotomy in God's nature.

To take the universalist verses at "face value" has an effect on our theology also.

God is someone who DOES have the ability to actually save ALL of His creation (He is omnipotent). He is able to accomplish His will (He is sovereign), His mercy is not in opposition to His righteousness but working hand in hand for the same common purpose of redemption.

The universalist position believes and teaches that God is wise enough, powerful enough and loving enough to actually save all of creation.
The annihilation positiong falls short of this.
Either God is unable or unwilling to save all of creation.

That is why I believe when I observe the verses in both I am able to understand the "annihilation" verses with a universalist framework and result with a greater theology than the annihilationist will.

I then match that with the early church and its position on the restoration of all things and I find a completely orthodox position.

BTW - I thoroughly enjoy discussing with you also. God bless :)

Steven3
Dec 17th 2007, 12:29 AM
Hey T
BTW - I thoroughly enjoy discussing with you also. God bless :)I don't think allowing freewill (for man to "choose life, or choose death" is inconsistent with omnipotence, since giving man freewill inherently requires God doing less than he is able to do. He could override our choice. But, otherwise, okay we'll leave it there :)
God bless & take care
Steven

Toolman
Dec 17th 2007, 01:06 AM
Hey TI don't think allowing freewill (for man to "choose life, or choose death" is inconsistent with omnipotence, since giving man freewill inherently requires God doing less than he is able to do. He could override our choice. But, otherwise, okay we'll leave it there :)
God bless & take care
Steven

Or He could be wise/powerful enough to know how to bring each creature He created back to Himself, while still allowing their will to be part of that process. His omnipotence and sovereignty remain fully intact as well as man's will being able to respond and understand God's light, as it is given.

That is just one of the reasons I find the universalist position much more consistent with the whole of scripture.

So, I'm ok with leaving it there :)