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Christians going to Heaven?

Updated on May 11, 2018

Christians going to Heaven?

This is one of the enigma of the Christian experience, but how so? The bible does speaks of heaven, but does it say that's where humans go when they die? Paul spoke of the saints being forever with the Lord, but did he say where? Being with the Lord, yes but does this means in heaven? How many times have you heard people say they're going to heaven? They upholds the view, having been indoctrinated to believe this concept. Many die with the firm belief that when they awake on the resurrection morning, they will awake in heaven. Or that after death their souls rest in heaven awaiting the final rapture. But from where does this concept originate? Certainly, with so much to gain or to loose, we need to know the answer, and convincingly? Or do we? With so much hanging on to our faith, is it not right that we have an unambiguous answer?

Examine some of the following concepts that prevails among church groups:

* Saints becomes angels and goes to heaven when they die.

* All who obeys the Ten Commandments will go to heaven.

* All who believes in God will go to heaven

* Anyone who does no murder will go to heaven

* All who does more good than bad in his life will go to heaven.

* All church goers will go to heaven.

* All in the Christian family (the save sanctify the unsaved) will go to heaven

* Heaven is the reward of the faithful

Well, these are sound concepts, aren't they? After all does the bible not say we should live a righteous life? And of course the Ten Commandments are goodly traits. Do no murder? Not covet? Keep the Sabbath? No adultery? No graven image & worship God only? Honour parents? Are these not neighbourly and righteous activities? However not only are the going to heaven concepts wrong, they are un-scriptural! Not in the Old Testament, neither did Jesus say, Paul or any New Testament authors wrote that saints are going to heaven.

I will take a challenging position and openly, probably unusual, but defiantly state that no scripture support such concepts. This of course is out of the norm and different to what is being taught in major well respected Christian faith groups. Did Christ and His apostles taught this doctrine? Did any early Christians or church fathers upheld or promote the concept? If not where did it originate and how and when did it become a Christian doctrine?

However, contrary to the popular concept, I can unconditionally assert and positively affirm that neither the Old or New Testament Scriptures support such a concept. Though early church fathers believed that Jesus Christ inaugurated the Kingdom of God on earth, they never believed that they were going to heaven. Therefore I can assuredly reveal that no human being has ever or will ever go to Heaven! But how do I prove this point, when some bible scholars promote the concept from the biblical text?


Ancient beliefs

The Egyptians believed that the departed souls would undertake a literal journey to reach heaven. The Hittites believed that heaven was the abode of the gods. In Buddhism, there are several heavens, and those who accumulate good karma may be reborn in one of them. Attaining heaven is not the final pursuit in Hinduism as heaven itself is empirical and related to physical body. In Islam there are references to an afterlife in Eden for those who do good deeds. However children automatically go to heaven when they die regardless of the religion of their parents. In Sikhism heaven and hell are not places for living hereafter but are part of the spiritual topography and do not exist. In Judaism, as is in Christianity, heaven is the dwelling place of Yahweh, God. However, the view of going to heaven is a modern concept, and probably found its way into Christianity via the Romans who later converted to Christianity. The Persian Zoroastrian's and Mithraism, Median inspired the Roman system of worship Mithraism, worshipped the god Mithra, though the Greeks have some aspects of this worship system. A significant number of these ancient religion has some form of this going to heaven concept, but seem to have developed through pagan systems into Christian consciousness. Religious systems that inspired the Romans, has found its way into Christian teachings. This because the Romans believe in keeping some old concepts and gave them a good Christian mix. The Roman Catholic church began to teach that Christ through His death and resurrection has opened heaven to us. They teach that Christians who dies still imperfectly purified, must pass through a state of purification, known as 'purgatory' before they enter into heaven. but many Protestant churches not just adhere to the concepts, but actively teach of Christian going to heaven, not just the Catholics.

Geneses

Old Testament

The concepts of humans going to heaven is not a biblical teaching. The Old Testament Scriptures, has many mentions of heaven, but it is always as a place where God dwells, not a hope for humans. But the Old Testament is almost silent about the concept of heaven, let alone going there. However, there are a few text that indicate a developing or newly formed belief in heaven. It is possible that King David (Psa 16:9-11), "... You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand2, could be anticipating a location of blessing in God’s presence in the after life. Similarly, "You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory" (Psa 73:24),. Though, it would seem, that many of the anticipation of saints was on the probability of an existence on earth in the kingdom of Christ after their resurrection. For the people of God throughout the ages of the Christian experience, could be sharing a longing with the much loved and often quoted psalms, "Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you" (Psa. 73: 25). Surely, this is nothing more than an expression of the heart that has a longing, a great desire to be with God. So this is much similar to Israels famous King David's expression, where the psalmist declared his desire for God,, "As the deer pants for streams of waters my soul pants for you, my God... My soul thirsts for God, for the living God...When can I go and meet with God? (Psa. 42: 1-2).This is not an expression of desire to be in heaven, but a desire to be in the presence of God.

Christ First Coming

New Testament

Jesus told the thief on the cross,“Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise" (Luke 23: 43). But did Jesus infer that paradise is in heaven or on earth? The New Testament authors have a lot to say about New heaven and earth. They signify that the death, and resurrection of Christ has brought Gods salvation to the whole of humanity. That Jesus will come again to earth and gather those who worship Him as Lord, but where will they go? Is this concept consistent with New Testament teaching concerning “final things,” the phrase “new heavens and new earth?” Surely this does not imply Christians will go into a new heaven. But the teachings of Christ imply that Christians will inhabit a new earth. However, some interprets the passage as a possible representation of the protected environment , up above the earth, Christians will be in, following the Judgement Day's turrmoil; an environment which is often referred to as “heaven” (Mt. 6:19-20). This apostle John said, “Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea...I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God" (Rev. 21: 1-2). Christ in the sermon on the mount, taught, "THE MEEK SHALL INHERIT THE EARTH!" (Matt 5)

However, If we understand heaven as in the air, there are several levels of heaven i.e. the birds fly in heaven, and above them the interplanetary sphere and so on. But where God now dwells, no man will, no believer will. Yes we Christian will be lifted up - but we will meet Christ halfway up - as He already will be on His way down to earth to reward the faithful. Never at any point do the Gospels or Paul say Jesus has been raised, therefore we are all going to heaven. I've often heard people say, 'I'm going to heaven soon, and I won't need this painful corrupt body there, thank goodness. That's a very damaging distortion, all the more so for being unintentional.

This teaching about us going to heaven is a misconception taught by misguided bible scholars over time and now so imbedded it cannot be erased. These bible scholars and teachers have not done their homework and has mislead many. Often I'm asked to explain why I reject that typical sentiment found even among some of the world most notably preachers and theologians. I told them there are several important respects in which this wildly held view is unsupported in any of the gospels or Paul's writings. First, the timing, some churches teach that when we die, we enter an intermediate state, clearly wrong and not scriptural - you're ether alive or dead!

The Apostle Paul is very clear that Jesus Christ has been raised from the dead already, but that nobody else who is dead has yet to be raised. Secondly, our physical state. The New Testament says that when Christ does return, the dead will be resurrected - experience a whole new life. Some even taught that we have a separate soul is different and independent of the body, the body die but the soul lives, again a wrong concept. The teaching goes way back into pagan cultures but found its way into modern teachings by a fallen church, those misguided church fathers who believes it was OK to mix religious practices with pagan customs. God rejected those teachings in Old Testament and quite frankly, the principle is, if one take a bottle labelled arson and relabelled it as honey the content is still deadly!

Christ Second Coming

New Jerusalem

In Genesis at the point where God created Adam from the dust of the earth, the text clearly declared that God breathe the breath of live into him and the man became a living soul! It was not part of Adam that started to live, all of him became a fully functional human being! In Ezekiel 18 we're told " the soul that sin it shall die" The Hebrew from which "soul" is interpreted refers to "life" or "person" so the reference is the whole person shall lose his life because of unrepentant sins. Also, the location. At no point do the resurrection narratives of the four Gospels say, 'Jesus has been raised, therefore we are all going to heaven. It says that Christ is coming back here on earth, His Second Coming, to bring it all together, appearing in the heavens where all eyes shall behold Him. Settled on Holy Mount Zion - The New Jerusalem, restore the world to what it was before Adam and Eve cause sin to enter, and in an act of new creation or regeneration of the world - behold all things will become new.

In the book of John, Jesus himself is quoted as saying, "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). Ever heard the term "a text without a context is a pretext?" Well, many keen bible watchers has at length examined teachings of the "secret rapture" and Paul statement "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" (Thess. 4: 17), to mean we're going away in a secret rapture to heaven.

First, when Paul refers to caught up to meet Christ he's referring not to a secret rapture, because it will be a open visible event! It will be accompanied by loud voices and trumpets blast, certainly not secret. The meeting Christ in the air, will be visible to all and at the point when Christ is coming down! Yes we will be caught up to meet Jesus in the air, but we will return to live with Him on the earth! Secondly, "and so shall we ever be with the Lord" do not mean living in Heaven! It means Christians will be in the Lord's presence for a thousand years on earth! In the sermon on the mount Christ specifically taught His followers, "Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth" (Matt. 5: 5).

The misguided teachers forget the text that say we will reign with Him in the new Jerusalem. The 'New Jerusalem' not the same Jerusalem which is being fought over by the Jews and Arabs. The Old will be taken over, and when all things are renewed Jerusalem become the city of God and where Christ will reign! Many modern culture seems very interested in life after death, but the New Testament is much more interested in what can term the life after death in the ultimate resurrection into the new heavens and the new Earth. Jesus' resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration, "...he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead" (Col. 1: 18), that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will 'awake,' be embodied and participate with Christ in the renewal of Jerusalem and the world.

Jerusalem Today

Muslim Wall

The Muslim invaders of Jerusalem believed the prophecy that Christ was returning there when they occupied the city so they built a great wall in the 1050's AD with the aim of blocking the coming Messiah from entering the city. The wall is still there to see today. So where will the new Jerusalem be? "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea...And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband...And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God... And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and shewed me that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God" (Rev. 21: 1-3, 10). In the chapter John saw this great city coming down from heaven - a picture of loveliness, so beautiful John was struck with awe. Another statement from the bible, "behold all things will become new", this is not about Heaven but earth. Heaven is already a picture of Holiness and beauty - a place where chaos cannot enter.

Remember, that Satan tried to bring chaos in heaven and the arch angel Gabriel fought against him and threw him out - Christ gives a picture of Satan defeat when He declared, "And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven" (Luke 10:18). In Revelation Satan's final defeat will take place where he now dwells on earth causing misery to untold millions of humans around the world. Christ will usher in a new era of peace on earth - the "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men" (Luke 2: 14), will not just be a Christmas time phrase but peace all year round and forever. A place where "The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD" (Isa. 65: 25).

Saints Ressurected

Believers who have died

One of the key text used by bible interpreters to promote the going to heaven concept, is Paul's letter to the Thessalonians:

"Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord for ever. Therefore encourage one another with these words" (1Thess. 4: 13-18).

Is Paul telling the Thessalonian folks that they will go to heaven? What is evident from the text is that some of the Thessalonians may have misunderstood Paul and thought all believers would live until Christ second coming. Firstly the saints view Paul's teachings on Christ return as an imminent event. Paul is giving them reassurance of the resurrection, despite the seemingly finality and horror of death. Inscriptions on tombs and references in literature show that first century pagans viewed death with horror and the end of everything. Paul was painting the Christian attitude in strong contrast to pagans. Christ bore the horror of death so that those who believe in Him would not have to. Christians are merely asleep, a metaphor for death, they will arise on the morning of the resurrection. Christians who are alive will not 'precede', or come before the dead in Christ, they will rise to meet Christ first. This is before the ascension of all believers. And all will be caught up to meet Him in the air. Now as explained earlier there are different levels of heaven, and so caught up to meet Him in the air or caught up together with them in the clouds, so is an aspect of heaven. However this is not where God dwells, and the teaching is that we will be in the presence of God in heaven.And so we will be with the Lord' for ever, is not an endorsement of being in Heaven. The emphasis here is not on where we will be, but who we will be with, and the answer is 'with the Lord'. Remember the bible interprets itself, and comparable text reveals, the New Jerusalem, which John saw coming down from heaven is where the saints will dwell and reign with Christ for a thousand years. 'The meek will inherit the earth'.

On that day, Satan's down fall will be complete and final, he will be bound and cast into the bottomless pt for a thousand years. And "the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of God and His Christ" who will reign with the faithful for a thousand years - in the New Jerusalem! "And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it...And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof...And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it...And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there...And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it" (Rev. 21: 22 - 26).


Christians Ressurected

Will Christians go to Heaven?

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  • celafoe profile image

    charlie 

    5 years ago from From Kingdom of God living on Planet earth in between the oceans

    wow I have found another brother They are so few and far between. So good to see someone else teaching the truth about us inheriting the earth

    God bless you my brother

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    Thanks and welcome to the family, brotherhood of man and the fatherhood of God Miss Jamie. This family is highly connected, trust you haven't had much difficulty finding this true path in Jesus which leads to God. Thanks for the info Make Money, very interesting bit of info.

  • Make  Money profile image

    Make Money 

    7 years ago from Ontario

    There are many many more Christians in the world than just white middle class Americans TravelinAsia. I just heard that there are more practicing Catholics in the underground Catholic Church in China than there are practicing Catholics in all of Europe. Yes communist China still suppresses the Catholic Church but it is still growing at an amazing rate. God bless them.

  • MissJamieD profile image

    MissJamieD 

    7 years ago from Minnes-O-ta

    Great hub! I've only recently decided to bless my life with Christianity and God but I know that you're 100% accurate here, thank you;)

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    You're welcome and thanks for stopping by AEvans. This issue will not go away over night though but, its up to the teachers who teach to teach pure truth and teach it well. Unfortunately, many are not, because of vested interest. We're blinded by circumstances i.e. "our organisations suports it, so I will", "my pastor told me so, and I beleive it". Many people come to study the Scriptures with "blinkers" on, others come with pre-conceived or preformed ideas, so we bend text to support our views. To get truth - the best from the Scriptures we need gifted teachers, who have nothing to loose but more to gain from discovering and preaching truth. "And they shall know the truth and the truth shall set them free". Secondly we have many extra biblical helps (well researched works - articles), books, dictionery's that we can use to help us understand some difficult text. What we should never do, is form an opinion based soley on feelings, what we've heard, that is wrong hermeneutics! What is unquestionable is that - the truth is out there, somewhere, will we find it? Or will we settle for less?

  • AEvans profile image

    Julianna 

    7 years ago from SomeWhere Out There

    I am so glad that someone has stepped up and written the truth. Now I can put this to rest with many who believe that all of us go to heaven when we die. No matter how many times I have pointed it out in scripture, people turn the other cheek. Great message! Thank you! :)

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    David, I appreciate all discussions. Sometimes they leads to nowhere, but I like to listen to others, Desideratta says, "even the dull and ignorant, they too have their story...you are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars, you have a right to be here...and whether or not this is clear to you, no doubt the universe is folding as it should". Now I don't like calling anyone dull or ignorant, but I capture the message within, that we really have to listen to others cause every man has something to say. Secondly, while we're individually unique, and special we're not the only human beings. God made us all special, and uniquely individual and we all have something we give to the world. When we're gone someone will take our place, and the story begins a new, and on and on it goes, until Christ returns. We don't all have the answers to lifes difficult questions, but its good to share opinions and views and it's ok to differ. What we must never do is get into that mind set, that we know it all, and that we're always right, "for now we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face". Hope your trouble with the links is past.

  • Make  Money profile image

    Make Money 

    7 years ago from Ontario

    Yeah Kenny, I like having discussions with people of other Christian denominations. Some of them really know the Bible well. I use to go to the Hubpages Religion & Beliefs forum every day for some good discussions. Until I was banned for posting what the management said were commercial links. But they were links to the Bible and one about the Sacraments, not commercial links at all. The management said they would lift my ban if I promised to never post a link in the forum ever again. Well I couldn't promise that because I was seeing other people post links in the forums all the time. I thought it was rather unfair, so I didn't promise him that and I don't go to the Hubpages forums anymore. So anyway I enjoyed this little discussion Kenny. Maybe I'll check some of your other hubs.

    God bless

    Mike

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    Thanks Make Money,

    Your arguments, are clearly stated and your position is quite clear. And although we share some very important views regarding Christianity and Christ, we do differ in some cases. However, that should not deter us from engaging in discussing issues of importance in our world.

  • Make  Money profile image

    Make Money 

    7 years ago from Ontario

    I've been meaning to get back to you Kenny about what you said in a previous post. Maybe I didn't read your hub closely enough. I thought you were saying that nobody is in heaven, body or soul. You said "I agree there are a great multitude of saints in heaven right now - but not bodily!" Yeah that refers to the second death as mentioned in Apocalypse (Revelation) 2:11, 20:6, 20:14 and 21:8. The first death is of the soul, the second of the body. It also refers to Ezechiel 37 about the vision of the resurrection of the dry bones. The Delta Rhythm Boys released a song about this in I think the 1950s called the Dry Bones. I'm sure you've heard the song before. You can find it with a search at YouTube. So we are not that far apart. Although I think in a couple of instances the Bible mentions some that have entered heaven body and soul. Elias I believe. And possibly Henoch (Enoch). And Matthew 27:52 does say "many bodies of the saints that had slept arose", note that it does say bodies. That's why many Catholic commentaries believe that Elias and Henoch will be the two witnesses from Apocalypse (Revelation) 11. In fact the Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible has the commentary for verse 3 reading "My two witnesses"... It is commonly understood of Henoch and Elias."

    http://www.drbo.org/chapter/73011.htm

    Yeah Kenny I do weigh the arguments. I often compare the Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible with the King James Bible and other than the 7 books and parts of Daniel and Esther I have found that even though the words are not exact, in most instances the meaning is not changed. Well I even posted an online version of the King James Bible in a previous post. You might note that it includes the Apocrypha Books. I have found that the Jehovah's Witness Bible has many changes. Actually I don't even use the newer Catholic versions of the Bible. The Douay-Rheims Catholic Bible is my ultimate source because the Old Testament part of it was taken from the Septuagint, which includes the Apocrypha, that was translated from Hebrew to Greek in stages between the 3rd and 1st centuries BC by Jews in Alexandria. The Septuagint was translated into the Latin Vulgate in the 5th-century by Jerome. The English College at Rheims and Douay, France translated the Latin Vulgate into English between 1582 and 1609, which is called the Douay-Rheims Bible. I read the English version because I can't read Greek or Latin but I am certain it would mean the same in those languages. I wrote a hub about Bible History that you may be interested in.

    God bless

    Mike

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    Make Money, I'm pleased to see someone with such commitments in a world that is mostly uncommitted to the cause. I don't think there is much more I can say on the matter to convince you as you're settled where you are, in your opinions. Thanks for the links though, but remember Roman Catholics will defend their faith, just like the Muslims will defend theirs or the Church of Latter Day Saints. And I beleive also that you can prove almost anything from the bible. One thing we must do though, is when we start to study the Scriptures is separate ourselfs from preconceived ideas. This will give us a clearer view of objectivity. Do some research and weigh the arguments against other biblical text - compare text. We cannot study with blinkers on or the clair message will be missed and be lost to us. And frankly many of todays church teachings are about interpreting Scriptures to suit our denominations or organisations. It is like fitting square pegs into round holes. I must agree with one thing you've said which is the bible is filled with advice on intercessory prayers, this is clearly not for dead people people - it is about praying for those who are alive - because the dead does not know anything, their thoughts perish at death.

  • Make  Money profile image

    Make Money 

    7 years ago from Ontario

    Interesting Kenny. I pray for the Holy Souls in purgatory every day, and it doesn't cost me anything, lol. Purgatory is not a bad thing, it means that you are destined to eventually be with Our Lord. The name purgatory is not mentioned in the Bible, just like the word Trinity is not but we believe in both. And like the Trinity there are many references to purgatory in the Bible. Instead of listing them all I'll offer you this web page that does list them.

    http://www.scripturecatholic.com/purgatory.html

    Besides the two Bible passages that I have already mentioned about the saints there are many more in the Bible including using intercessory prayers. This might get your hackles up but first take a look at this page that lists many of the Bible verses about saints and intercessory prayers.

    http://www.scripturecatholic.com/saints.html

    Catholics do not follow Sola Scriptura (by scripture alone) but that doesn't mean that we don't follow the Bible. We do, very closely. Actually Sola Scriptura is not Biblical as we see in 2 Thessalonians 2:14 "Therefore, brethren, stand fast; and hold the traditions which you have learned, whether by word, or by our epistle." I believe the same verse is 2 Thessalonians 2:15 in the King James Bible.

    http://quod.lib.umich.edu/k/kjv/browse.html

    If you click Home from either of the first two links I posted you will see that John Salza does a very good job, using the Bible to correct many of the myths and proclaiming many of the truths regarding the Catholic Faith. His web site is appropriately called Scripture Catholic.

    God bless, my friend

    Mike

  • Kenny MG profile imageAUTHOR

    MR Black 

    7 years ago from UK, Europe

    TravelinAsia your point is well taken! Thanks to you guys for your much welcome comments. I appreciate you all for expressing your opinions and every many should be free to express themselves what ever their creed, culture or race. Davidkaluge, I'm not a J. Witness, never have, never will be, as they twist a whole lot of scriptures to suit themselves. For instance, they teach that the 144,000 sealed from the twelve tribes of Israel represents their members - the Revelation text is clear those were already sealed (past tense)from Israel at the time John got the vision. But the great multitude that no one could number are from every nations and languages - SAINTS FROM AROUND THE WORLD! Make Money, I see where you can come to such understanding, but we have to look carefully at the context of the arguments, and compare other text to get a better picture of a discussion. Remember that the Bible does not contradicts itself! You must remember that when we die - saint or sinner, we all are buried in the grave and become decomposed corpse in time. We do not exist in a semi-conscious state at death, this is an false concept and originate in Roman Catholic teachings. They taught that when you die your soul exist in pergatory - a state of semi-consciousness (between death and life) and suffer torments. Then they claim only the priests has the power to pray your soul out of pergatory into paradise. They have a well known phrase "when the penny in the tilly drop - your soul out of pergatory pop". Can you imagined how much money the Catholic Church made as many people including many poor who could least afford the cost - but believed this and were more than willing to pay to save their loved ones soul? Friend, when we die our soul (bodies) perish, but our spirit goes back to God. Christ used symbolic languages when He mentioned Abraham and other saints are in heaven. What is in heaven is a memory of them - their names written in the Lambs book of life. So that when Christ returns, the first resurrection (1 Cor. 15)those who are in Christ will rise first. They will not have that old body that they had before, subject to decay, a rotten corpse, but they will be given a new body that cannot die! Just like the one Christ had after he rose from the dead - they recognised Him yes, but He had a new body! Christ is the first fruit of all those that sleeps (died and in the grave). This is a beautiful picture being painted here and why Christ had to die. For centuries ever since Adam the first human, the greatest enemy Satan inflicted on mankind is sin and death, but through Christ all will be made alive. Christ die to destroy sin and the consequence which is death -as He rose to life, sting and power of death is concored! We the saints have the victory over sin and death through the works of Christ. Those of us unfortunate to taste death before Christ second coming will sleep (rest in death), and because our name is written in the lambs book of life (like Abraham), symbolically, we'll be in heaven. I agree there are a great multitude of saints in heaven right now - but not bodily! Remember that many who die - their graves are still with us - if we open them we will see their corpse! But because they will come to life - given a new body at the first resurrection, they will be caught up to meet Christ (the great meeting) in the air - and then they will accompany Our Lord Jesus Christ when He returns to reign on earth!

  • Make  Money profile image

    Make Money 

    7 years ago from Ontario

    I agree the pre-trib rapture is bunk. But what about what happened to the saints after His resurrection in Matthew 27:52-53 "And the graves were opened: and many bodies of the saints that had slept arose, [53] And coming out of the tombs after his resurrection, came into the holy city, and appeared to many."

    Or what about Revelation 7:9-10 "After this I saw a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and tribes, and peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne, and in sight of the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands: [10] And they cried with a loud voice, saying: Salvation to our God, who sitteth upon the throne, and to the Lamb."

    There are a great multitude of saints in heaven right now and they will accompany Our Lord Jesus Christ when He returns.

  • TravelinAsia profile image

    TravelinAsia 

    7 years ago from Thailand/Southeast Asia

    I always thought one of the fundamental flaws of Christian beliefs is that good Christians go to heaven, or are saved by the rapture? This fails to explain what happens to Hindus, Buddhists, South American natives and various other people from other cultures with different beliefs. Am I supposed to believe that heaven will be full of white middle class Americans, and everyone else will suffer in hell? This seems rather suspect to me?

  • davidkaluge profile image

    davidkaluge 

    7 years ago

    Well I think you just expressed your view just as others can express their views. You claims do not prove if Christians will or will not go to heaven and you sound like a J. witness but the slight difference is you claim nobody has been to heaven even when Jesus said Abraham etc is in heaven. Why do people use part of the scripture to support claims? It is because the bible is in conflict with itself. Do mean Jesus will meet Christians half and they stay there? That is only a Christian view some say no God.

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