We have been told lies about heaven and hell and the immortality of the human soul from the very beginning and they have been passed down to us. Let us examine Godís word and see what the Bible actually says in regards to these matters.
Only God has immortality...
Who(Christ Jesus, v13) 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. (1 Tim 6:16) (KJV throughout unless noted)
Satan deceives the WHOLE world.
And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.(Rev 12:9)
The great lie started:
And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:(Gen 3:4)
Well then, what happens when we die?
All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again.(Eccl 3:20)
What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit? Shall the dust praise thee? shall it declare thy truth?(Psalms 30:9)
For in death there is no remembrance of thee: in the grave who shall give thee thanks?(Psalms 6:5)
For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. Also their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun.(Eccl 9:5-6)
Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.(Eccl 9:10)
O LORD our God, other lords beside thee have had dominion over us: but by thee only will we make mention of thy name. They are dead, they shall not live; they are deceased, they shall not rise: therefore hast thou visited and destroyed them, and made all their memory to perish.(Isaiah 26:13-14)
Are Abraham and David now in Heaven?
Doubtless thou art our father, though Abraham be ignorant of us, and Israel acknowledge us not: thou, O LORD, art our father, our redeemer; thy name is from everlasting.(Isaiah 63:16)
Abraham would know of them if he was in heaven.
Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day.(Acts 2:29)
For David is not ascended into the heavens...(Acts 2:34)
Surely some people go to heaven when they die...
No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. (John 1:18)
And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven. (John 3:13)
What about the spirit, does it not go back to God when we die?
Who knoweth the spirit of man that goeth upward, and the spirit of the beast that goeth downward to the earth?(Eccl 3:21)
Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.(Eccl 12:7)
The spirit that God puts in man is the same that comes out, this spirit can not live without the body.
And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.(Gen 2:7)
Spirit [Strongs 7307; The main definition is wind or breath.]
His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.(Psalms 146:4)
Perhaps one can think of the spirit that God gives us as a computer hard drive. It has some information on it that God puts there. (Characteristics, talents, etc.) God puts it into our body when we are born. We use it, and it records all our thoughts, actions, and experiences. Like a computer, we can't run without our hard drive, and the hard drive can't do or experience anything without the body.
The Messiah likens death to sleeping.
These things said he: and after that he saith unto them, Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking of rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead.(John 11:11-14)
So what does it mean if we are asleep, is all hope lost when we die?
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.(Romans 6:23)
Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:(1 Cor 15:12-13)
If when we die and then know nothing and don't go to heaven, what is the eternal life part?
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (John 5:24)
That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:15)
When will this happen?
But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming. (1 Cor 15:20-23)
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. 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. (John 6:39-40)
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. (John 6:44)
The last day is when the Messiah returns to earth and executes judgement.
Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. (1 John 3:2)
And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (Heb 9:27)
And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt. (Dan 12:2)
But go thou thy way till the end be: for thou shalt rest, and stand in thy lot at the end of the days. (Dan 12:13)
Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, And shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. (John 5:28-29)
What happens to the righteous?
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. (1 Thess 4:13-17)
He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. (Rev 21:7)
What happens to the wicked, do they burn forever?
Would the righteous have to listen to their wicked loved ones in anguish for eternity?
For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch. But unto you that fear my name shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall. And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the LORD of hosts. (Mal 4:1-3)
The wicked are resurrected as mortals, are judged, then thrown into a fire and are burned up and DIE.
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. (Rev 21:8)
But some scriptures say everlasting punishment and fire?
[Matt 25:41] [Matt 25:46]
The punishment is everlasting in the fact that it is permanent. For Satan and his demons being spirit, they are bound forever but are not consumed in the fires as wicked humans are.
We know that Sodom and Gomorrah are not still burning in eternal fire, but they were burned and totally consumed. [Jude 1:7]
Note that many bible translators believed the traditional heaven and hell view and thus we can see some of it in the scriptures.
And Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise." (Luke 23:43 NKJV)
There is no punctuation in the original text, so we can see here a significant change in meaning if the comma is placed after the today.
But I see the word "hell" in the bible?
Hell, pit, and grave are all translated from the same Hebrew word in the KJV bible.
What about Elijah? Surely he went to heaven. Let's exam this closely. We see Elijah SUDDENLY meeting Obadiah. [1 Kings 18:7] Obadiah was worried the Spirit of the Lord would carry him away and he would not be able to find him. [1 Kings 18:12] God transports Elijah as needed. [2 Kings 2:11] Our atmosphere is divided up into many layers or heavens, so heaven can mean the air or sky. [Gen 2:1] Notice how the people are aware of how the lord chauffeurs Elijah. [2 Kings 2:16]
What about the transfiguration of Matt. 17?
We can see from verse 9 that this was a vision for the future.
How about the parable of lazarus in Luke 16?
This is what Vine's says about parables.
Christ's "parables" most frequently convey truths connected with the subject of the kingdom of God. His withholding the meaning from His hearers as He did from the multitudes, Matt. 13:34, was a Divine judgment upon the unworthy.
Two dangers are to be avoided in seeking to interpret the "parables" in Scripture, that of ignoring the important features, and that of trying to make all the details mean something.
Well what about ghost sightings and the people who talk to the dead?
We have established that the dead are asleep until the resurrection at the Messiah's return. If the dead are in heaven or hell, why would there be a need for a resurrection? So we can conclude that any supernatural phenomena like this are demons. What does the bible say about these things?
Don't let anyone among you offer a son or daughter as a sacrifice in the fire. Don't let anyone use magic or witchcraft, or try to explain the meaning of signs. Don't let anyone try to control others with magic, and don't let them be mediums or try to talk with the spirits of dead people. The Lord hates anyone who does these things. Because the other nations do these things, the Lord your God will force them out of the land ahead of you.(Deut 18:10-12 NCV; New Century Version)
A man or woman who is a medium or a fortune-teller must be put to death. You must stone them to death; they have brought it on themselves.(Lev 20:27 NCV)
I will be against anyone who goes to mediums and fortune-tellers for advice, because that person is being unfaithful to me. So I will cut him off from his people.(Lev 20:6 NCV)
All day long I stood ready to accept people who turned against me, but the way they continue to live is not good; they do anything they want to do. Right in front of me they continue to do things that make me angry. They offer sacrifices to their gods in their gardens, and they burn incense on altars of brick. They sit among the graves and spend their nights waiting to get messages from the dead. They eat the meat of pigs, and their pots are full of soup made from meat that is wrong to eat.(Isaiah 65:2-4 NCV)
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