Wednesday, November 28, 2007

After Life (3) - More Paradise

The Bible tells us something of what Paradise is like:

  1. Paradise is a conscious existence. Hebrews 12:1,2 speaks of a great crowd of witnesses, who are aware of our struggles on the earth. People who have died will be able to pray for those still on earth. In Revelation 6:9-11, the souls of the martyrs are heard crying out to God, and praying about events on earth.

  2. The souls of the saints will be made perfect in holiness. Hebrews 12:23 speaks of the "spirits of righteous men made perfect". Man does not become perfect by discarding his body. Both body and soul have potential for good and evil. The souls of the saints will be made perfect in Paradise.

  3. The suffering of life on earth will be ended (Rev 7:16,17).

  4. Paradise is a place of rest.
    Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on. "Yes," says the Spirit, "they will rest from their labour, for their deeds will follow them” (Rev 14:13).
  5. Jesus will be at the centre of Paradise. All those who go there will have the privilege of being with him. They will experience all the glory and blessing that comes from being close to Jesus, who has gone to prepare a place for his followers.
    I am going there to prepare a place for you... I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. (John 14:3).
    Paradise is a temporary dwelling place for disembodied regenerate souls, where they remain until the last day when Christ returns.
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1 comment:

Steve Scott said...

What is often left out of the conversation on death and afterlife is the disintegration of man. We were created an integral being, but death is disintegration. The body is wrenched from the soul so that we are divided and diminished beings. This is how terrible death is, the destructive result of sin. God has mercy in receiving our spirits into his presence, but the real goal/point/destiny of Christians is not entrance into paradise, but it is a resurrected body reunited with the disconnected spirit. We will then be a complete being again, ready for kingdom work that is not possible in spirit form only.

In my view, much of Christianity needs to see Christ's resurrection as superior to his death, even as important as his death is. We will then view ours the same.