How did people get to Heaven before the death of Jesus Christ?

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  1. hagsvilleUSA profile image65
    hagsvilleUSAposted 11 years ago

    How did people get to Heaven before the death of Jesus Christ?

    ...I mean, obviously, according to the Christian faith.  I recently started thinking about this and have gotten a couple of thoughtful, if less-than-satisfying, answers.  I haven't gone to church much since I was young, and I wonder if there's a foundational answer to this question that I just don't know about.

  2. profile image0
    JThomp42posted 11 years ago

    In the Old Testament (Old Law) the people tried to live by the ten commandments and what was pleasing to God. But, Of course everyone is going to falter and sin. The atonement for sin is blood. They would sacrifice animals to God to atone for their sin. After the final sacrifice of blood (Jesus Christ) was the final atonement if you just accept him into your heart for what he has done for the world. Jesus came to save the World, Not condemn it.

    1. celafoe profile image52
      celafoeposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      there is more than to accept Him into your heart.  You have to repent, and be baptized, both baptisms AND change your ways
      He also says this Matt 10:34 "Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.

    2. profile image0
      JThomp42posted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Agree to disagree celafoe. You believe what the holy spirit tells you. I will believe what the holy spirit tells me. "WHO'S" to say who is right or who is wrong? We are to spread the "GOOD" news, not chastise it.

  3. bankscottage profile image91
    bankscottageposted 11 years ago

    Simple answer, they didn't.  Prior to the death of Christ, the good and faithful went to Purgatory to wait for entrance into Heaven.  With salvation by the death of Christ, they rose into Heaven. Thinking concrete, purgatory must of been crowded with the souls of all of those who had died before Christ.  With Christ's death, the place must have emptied out.

    1. celafoe profile image52
      celafoeposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      wow i sure do want to see the scriptures to prove this.  please supply them for me to read.  thank you

  4. Ceegen profile image67
    Ceegenposted 11 years ago

    The same way they get there now: Forgiveness of sins.

    Then, it was done through rituals and sacrifices. Now, it is done by having a personal relationship with God through the man we know as Jesus Christ. No more blood of animals, since the blood of a sinless man was all that was needed, once and for all time.

    God knows our hearts and minds, and saves all who call upon His name. The God of the "older" part of The Testament, is the same God of "newer" part of The Testament. Jesus Christ is God in the flesh.

    Kinda astronomically awesome that God personally died in the flesh, just to forgive the sins of His creation. Isn't it?

    1. lone77star profile image71
      lone77starposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Awesome, except for the part about Jesus being God. He said many times that he is not the Father, but his servant. He also said that he and the Father were one, but that can mean harmony. And what a blissful harmony that is

    2. Ceegen profile image67
      Ceegenposted 11 years agoin reply to this


      Jesus is God. Everywhere Jesus went, He declared Himself to be God in both words and actions. That is why Jesus said "I AM" in Mark 14:62 -- The same "I AM" that spoke to Moses on the mount.

      That is why Passover is so important.

    3. xanzacow profile image59
      xanzacowposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      It is impossible for father and son to be the same.

    4. Ceegen profile image67
      Ceegenposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      What is impossible with humans, is possible with God.

      "I and my Father are one." - John 10:30.

    5. celafoe profile image52
      celafoeposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      sorry   ceegen   passover is part of the law and is done away with.  not for Christians, it was to remind the jews of God's protection in goshen , Christians rely on Jesus not the old testament, that was for the jews

  5. duffsmom profile image61
    duffsmomposted 11 years ago

    The belief in the coming Messiah and his atonement for all sins.

    1. celafoe profile image52
      celafoeposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      scriptures please I havent heard this before other than a few specific individuals.

  6. Freeway Flyer profile image78
    Freeway Flyerposted 11 years ago

    I find it fascinating that people answer this as if it is a scientific question with a definitive answer. Can't Christians simply say that it is a mystery?

    Also, I would assume that when one dies, the concepts of time and space cease to have any meaning. So saying that people go to some place like purgatory for some given period of time is ridiculous. If God exists outside of time and space, He could instantaneously forgive people who lived before Jesus' death because He knew that this sacrificial death would eventually happen.

    But I don't believe that Jesus died some sort of a sacrificial death for humankind's sins, so I will shut up now.

    1. Ceegen profile image67
      Ceegenposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      Hah, well I certainly encourage you to consider the alternative. Truth is in fact, stranger than fiction. What a twisted web of lies we live in, even at this age in time. How far have we come as humans, only to still be at war with each other?

    2. lone77star profile image71
      lone77starposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      The problem isn't what God can do, but what we decide. We are His children and have His power of creation. We created our prison of spiritual darkness. The "trick" has been to get us to decide not to create it (ego). Christ's sacrifice was our key

  7. chasemillis profile image68
    chasemillisposted 11 years ago

    They basically didn't. Unless you were Jewish and made sacrifices (which didn't cover any sin at all, it was mostly like something to delay sin until Jesus came and died and rose), you didn't get to Heaven. Life is tough, but now anyone who believes in Jesus and his death and resurrection WILL get into Heaven (Having Faith, not just belief)

    1. xanzacow profile image59
      xanzacowposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      It takes more than just believing. Faith without dead.

  8. lone77star profile image71
    lone77starposted 11 years ago

    After 59 years studying this subject, I still don't know enough, but I've seen many miracles (cause-and-effect, not ordinary accidental) and I've seen heaven enough to stay hungry for it.

    Heaven is a spiritual state. In fact, Jesus says at one point that the kingdom is within you.

    How did people get to Heaven before Jesus? Simple. They followed Christ! But what does "following Christ" mean?

    I suspect, for instance, that Gautama Siddhartha Buddha followed Christ, 500 BC. Could "following Christ" be a spiritual direction?

    Too many people take the Bible as literal. But that is clearly wrong.

    "Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life" (2 Corinthians 3:6 KJV).

    Some of the Bible is literal, some is metaphor and some is parable. People get it wrong because ego makes them lazy (slothful) and arrogant (pride). It takes hard work and humility to find the truth. Your cup must be empty before God can fill it with answers. Most Christians have cups full of dogma and they are no longer looking.

    Start with Genesis 1:26. There it says that God created man in His own image and likeness. I've come to think that this part is more literal. Man is inherently baby gods. Only later did God create man from the dust of the ground (Gen.2:7) -- Homo sapiens. Thus, man is immortal spirit wrapped in Homo sapiens flesh. Genesis 6:3 reinforces this concept. So, God is not interested in these bodies we wear. His children look like Him.

    How this goes all wrong is that people think they are their bodies or their egos. Both are physical and thus vulnerable and temporary. Immortal spirit is invulnerable, but in its current condition, incapable of controlling or perceiving without a physical mechanism -- like human bodies. This is ego pulled over our spiritual eyes -- the "Darkness." This is temporary life of our mortal existence.

    By subduing ego (the desire to be right and frequently to make others wrong), you open your spiritual eyes to the "Light" -- no longer dependent upon physical methods for control or perception. This is "everlasting life."

    Ego is the trap. That is the poison of the Forbidden Tree -- good-evil, right-wrong, generous-selfish, compassion-indifference, confidence-doubt and many more action-reaction dichotomies.

    Love, faith, responsibility and humility are the keys. Use them well.

    1. celafoe profile image52
      celafoeposted 11 years agoin reply to this

      gen i-26 and 2-7 are the same thing not  two different.   budha followed Christ in 500BC (followed him before He was born) wow  what an absurdity.  show scriptural proof of this .   where do you get this stuff


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