In this blog I will be trying to get to the truth about what is really important in life, and to write satirically about what is not - all in my quest for The Stuff Reality is Made of.
I also write articles on Religion, History, Travel, Flying, Philosophy, Physics, Meta Physics, Natural History. Mathematics and Psychology.
You can also read my religious articles on our Christian website at www.whatafriend.co.za
Adult Sunday School -
Part 17 - The dead shall rise - by P.K.Odendaal - October 2012.
Ouch! ... that's a terrible blow to atheists. They think
that they can just die one day, and never live again - and never answer for
their deeds on earth or anywhere else. How convenient. Atheists believe in
determinism which states that each cause has an effect. But, they omit to state
that it is only they who are free from this injunction, as their lives and
deeds - and death - has no consequences or effects. How inconsistent is that
belief? Enough of that. I am here to bury Caesar, not to praise him, lest he
should rise again.
But there is a way you may rise again.
Scripture teaches that we will never die, once we are
reborn, and that people who have not been reborn are still dead. Reborn is the
word for being born of the Spirit of God. Dead means we are spiritually dead
due to our sins.
Let us start off with two passages where Jesus Christ
Himself talks about life hereafter:
Firstly, His argument
with the Sadducees (people who do not believe in the resurrection):
22:23 The same day came to him the
Sadducees, which say that there is no resurrection, and asked him, v:24Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die ....
Mat 22:31But as touching the resurrection of the dead,
have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, v:32I 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.
v:33And when the multitude heard this,
they were astonished at his doctrine.
Secondly His teaching to Nicodemus:
Joh 3:3Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily,
verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom
of God. v:4Nicodemus saith unto him,
How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his
mother's womb, and be born? v:5Jesus
answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of
the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. v:6That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and
that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Then we have two scriptures pointing to the fact that people
who live may be dead (spiritually) and those who are dead, may be alive
Luk 9:59And he said unto another, Follow me. But he
said, Lord, suffer me first to go and bury my father. v:60Jesus said unto him,
Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God.
Joh 11:11These 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. v:12Then said his disciples,
Lord, if he sleep, he shall do well. v:13Howbeit Jesus spake of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of
taking of rest in sleep. v:14Then said
Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead.
And speaking of Lazarus - there is where we will start our
investigation into the resurrection, because Lazarus is a type of the believers
who died in the flesh, and who went to the grave or pit as it is known. If we
read the passage in John 11 carefully, we will see that Jesus is not here
talking to Lazarus or about him. He is using this opportunity to talk about His
own death and the consequent resurrection of the dead. That is why He shouted
at Lazarus: Joh 11:43And when he thus
had spoken, he cried with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. It is still
the same shout we hear in: 1Th 4:16For 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:
When Jesus Christ spoke about the grave and hell, he even
used the same name of Lazarus again: Luk 16:22And it came to pass, that the beggar died,
and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and
was buried; v:23And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in
torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. v:24And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have
mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water,
and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame. v:25But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in
thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but
now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. v:26And beside all this, between us and you there
is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot;
neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence. v:27Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father,
that thou wouldest send him to my father's house: v:28For I have five brethren; that he may testify
unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment. v:29Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and
the prophets; let them hear them. v:30And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the
dead, they will repent. v:31And he said
unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be
persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
Our understanding then is that the grave and hell (or the
bosom of Abraham - paradise and hell) are two totally separate things. And the
first is where Jesus went in to set the captives free. (See part 16).
Paul confirmed this in: 1Co 15:32If after the manner of men I have fought with
beasts at Ephesus, what advantageth it me, if the dead rise not? let us eat and
drink; for tomorrow we die.
And what better example do we have than Jesus Christ
Himself, who rose from the dead. If, then, what is said here is true, shall we
not get our lives in order to please God and even to get some prize from Him
which he promised: Jas
1:12Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is
tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them
that love him.