paradise side of hell

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by christine, May 12, 2003.

  1. christine

    christine
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    This weekend I went to my mom's church. The preacher said something I had never heard of. I was wondering if anyone else has heard it or can explain it.
    He said that before Jesus died on the cross, all the christians that did blood sacrifice for their sins, but it was not sufficient to get them to heaven, so they went to the paradise side of hell. After Jesus died on the cross, he went back to the paradise side of hell, and got those people and took them to heaven.
    This was a baptist church. I looked over at my mom and she did not have a funny look on her face, so I don't know if this is a normal belief, or if she just wasn't listening very well.
    Christine :confused: :confused:
     
  2. Baptist Believer

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    I’ll give it a shot, but this preacher sounds a little off-base to me.

    There are two issues at stake here…

    1.) How were Old Testament believers saved?
    2.) What is the structure of the afterlife?

    (#1) Regarding salvation for Old Testament believers, the book of Genesis and the writings of Paul make it explicitly clear that all who are saved (both Old and New Testament) are saved through faith in God (later more fully revealed in Christ) and that the sacrifices of the Old Testament were pictures of the self-sacrifice of Christ for us. The blood of bulls and goats had no effect for those who did not have faith. Obedience to the sacrifice system was merely an outward expression of an inward faith.

    Therefore, there was/is no distinction in the afterlife regarding those who exercised faith in God before Christ and those who exercised faith in Christ during and after the Incarnation.

    (#2) I think the preacher had some mixed up views regarding the structure of the afterlife…

    Sheol (not “hell”) was considered the abode of those who had died. Those who had exercised faith in God were in Paradise (Heaven) enjoying the love of God and those who had rejected God were in agony in Hades – all in Sheol. But there was a “great gulf” that separated the two areas of Sheol so that no one could cross over.

    Those who are in Paradise will inherit the New Heaven and New Earth one day. Those in agony in Paradise will one day be cast into the Lake of Fire.

    Please keep in mind that this is all presented in figurative language because the human mind cannot comprehend that exact nature of this reality.

    But this much is clear. There is one of two destinies for every person who is given existence by the Creator – one ends in the glorious presence of God enjoying the complete and immeasurable fulfillment of what is means to be a human being and the other ends in the Lake of Fire.

    Will you accept or reject the love of God?

    Edited to fix a dumb error… I typed “Hades” when I meant to type “Sheol” throughout the post. Thanks to Dr. Bob for getting it right!

    [ May 12, 2003, 01:03 PM: Message edited by: Baptist Believer ]
     
  3. john6:63

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    (Luke 16:22-26) “And 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; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And 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. But 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. And 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.”
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    Sadly, the AV (and subsequent revisions) used "hell" indiscriminately and that leads to confusion. What you heard, though, was basically correct.

    OT unsaved = to hades (torment) side of sheol
    OT saved = to paradise (blessed) side of sheol

    Christ descended to "hell" (sheol) after His crucifixion, preached there, then "led captivity captive" taking the saved dead to heaven

    Today unsaved = to hades, awaiting the Great White Throne when death and hades will be cast into the Lake of fire (what we think of as "hell")
    Today saved = absent from body is present with the Lord
     
  5. Gayla

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    Dr Bob, I have heard this before (from people, not preachers) but have never been shown scripture to satisfy that it actually happened that way. In fact when I asked for scripture these folks could not give it to me. One said something to the effect of "I'll have to look it up and give it to you Tomorrow"

    [​IMG] tomorrow never came............
     
  6. john6:63

    john6:63
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    Gayla

    Matthew 12:40) “For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.”

    Hope this helps.
     
  7. christine

    christine
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    I'm even more confused now. Are you saying that there is a purgatory? :confused:
     
  8. Baptist Believer

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    I don't think anyone who has responded is suggesting a purgatory of any sort...

    Once a person dies, their final destiny is determined. Those who have rejected God are in agony waiting for their final destination in the Lake of Fire (see Revelation 20).

    Those who have received Christ and have passed from this physical life are in the presence of Christ now and forevermore. :D [​IMG]
     
  9. superdave

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    The confusion comes from the several different names and iterations of the words "heaven" and "hell" in the Bible.

    This is a fairly common rendering of the transition from the OT to the NT, and the teaching that Christ took the OT saints to Heaven I have not seen to be a huge point of contention.

    The view of Salvation in the OT is much more contentious.
     
  10. LadyEagle

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    Agree 100% with Dr. Bob. [​IMG]
     
  11. Major B

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    This is a big topic, involving both testaments, lots of "how many angels can dance on the head of a pin" theology, and also a bit of church history (the first mention of the two compartments of hell in official creeds was in a revised version of the "Apostle's Creed" from Spain in the 600s, according to Schaff).

    I have a paper on this(19-page, entitled Where Was Jesus' Spirit When His Body Was in the Tomb?)at the following website:

    URL: www.bible.org/docs/theology/christ/myth2.htm

    I welcome you all to read and comment on it.
     
  12. Gina B

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    Christine, it is not a vastly uncommon belief in baptist churches. It was not purgatory, and is believed not to exist after the death of Jesus.
    Here is the very basic version.

    A person who is not cleansed for eternity cannot enter heaven. Animal sacrifices were temporary sin coverings. Jesus blood is the only thing that can atone for sins eternally.
    It is believed that hell and paradise existed side by side. This is how the rich man and Lazarus interacted. Before the death of Jesus, God's people who died would go to paradise, not heaven. This was like a holding place, where they were until Jesus died and they could go to heaven. It has also been called "Abraham's bosom".
    After Jesus died he went to paradise and took his people out of paradise and led them to heaven as their sins were now atoned for eternally by his blood. There was no longer any need for paradise to exist, so it doesn't anymore. It was temporary.
    I hope that makes sense to you.
    This is how and what I've believed it to be, but I haven't studied it enough to tell you that I believe it 100%, only to tell you that this is what makes sense to me and how it is explained most commonly in churches that believe it. I would encourage you to listen to what others have to say on it and pray and study if it's something you're interested in understanding, and of course share with us as you go. [​IMG]
    Gina
     
  13. Bartholomew

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    The problem is NOT with the AV, but in the non-biblical use of the word "hell" to refer to the final Lake of Fire. The word "hell" means under or covered, and so refers to the abodes of the dead that are covered, under the earth. As both "paradise" and the fires of torment were under the earth, both are RIGHTLY called "hell". It is true that paradise existed in hell, for Jesus descended there on the same day he was with the repentant theif. If people used Bible terms PROPERLY, this would be a lot easier...
     
  14. christine

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    I guess this makes more sense now. I do remember the story about the two places being side by side. I guess I just never heard someone explain the "Big Picture". Alot of what I know is from childhood, so I guess my A & B just wasn't connected. It's hard for me to think of things in the bible chronologically because it's been so long. I'm still in the catch up mode.
    Thank you,
    Christine [​IMG]
     

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