JUST WHAT HAS
JESUS SAVED US FROM?
Our study will uplift three verses:
“That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection.”
“And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one
which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.” Jn.6:40
“Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord,
the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.”
First and foremost it needs
to be understood that GOD never created anything to perish. His provision for eternal life for every creature was all in place.
But then the cancer of sin entered His Creation due to the abuse of freewill. It began with the false notion that GOD was
unworthy to love and to worship (even though the entire system of life throughout the heavens were designed to bless the joys
of life throughout eternity).
here we are today, living in this quagmire of modern society filled with fundamentally immoral men and women, and where every
wind of doctrine of religion and philosophy is blowing. Through the minds and tongues of the populace stream forth a wonderful
list of possibilities of the answers to life’s basic questions: all of which evade the reality of man’s sin-depraved
soul in need of reconciliation to holiness: a divine reunion with GOD’S Holy Spirit. But the celebrated tutoring, strictly
enforced by Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and now atheism, luring through pride the consent of all, are the very religious
systems that continue to compel the rape of the dignity of life and the character of GOD.
All mainstream religions, Christianity, Islam, and certain sects of Judaism and Buddhism teach the doctrine of the
naturally immortal soul and that the destiny of each person at the time of their death will be to either face an eternal suffering
in the fires of hell or to enter the glories of heaven.
A few simple questions deserve to be asked about the meaning of death. And we would be wise to let the most simple
verses of the Bible answer them. It is important to have the clearest verses of the Bible as the starting point from which
to build Bible-obedient doctrine. Otherwise, contradictions will take hold between the Old and New Testaments that always
work to discredit Paul’s words, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God…” II Tim.3:16.
The Bible defines two deaths. The
first death is called “sleep,” while “the second death” is called “perdition” (or the
total end of one’s life). Jehovah, the angel Gabriel, Job, Jesus and the Apostle Paul called death "sleep"
(Deut.31:16; Dan.12:2; Lu.8:52-55; Jn.11:11-14; I Cor.15:51; I Th.4:14). Job said: "So man lieth down, and riseth not:
till the heavens be no more, they shall not awake, nor be raised out of their sleep." Job 14:12. Simple questions must
now be asked: Are you awake while you’re asleep? Are you conscious while unconscious? The obvious answer is no. The
first death, “sleep” is a provision of the Gospel, as it is written, “for as in Adam all die, even so in
Christ shall all be made alive.” I Cor.15:22. So, all who “sleep” in the first death wait for the voice
of Christ to awaken them from their slumber. It should also be noted that in these words, NONE AMONG THE DEAD are “alive”—not
until Jesus comes.
Is the church
correct in teaching that after we die we either go immediately to heaven or to hell? Let the Bible’s wisest man set
the starting point from which we can safely build our understanding on just what it is that Jesus has saved us from.
Ecclesiastes 9:5,6,10 For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not
any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. [v.6] Also their love, and their hatred,
and their envy is now perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun…
[v.10] Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom,
in the grave, whither thou goest.
we trust these words of Solomon, when he was an old man at the end of his life's journey?
Kings 3:9-12 [Solomon prayed to GOD] “Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge Thy people, that I
may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people? And the speech pleased the LORD, that
Solomon had asked this thing. And God said unto him, Because thou hast asked this thing, and has not asked for thyself long
life; neither hast asked riches for thyself, nor hast asked the life of thine enemies; but hast asked for thyself understanding
to discern judgment; [v.12] Behold I have done according to thy words: lo, I have given thee a wise and an understanding heart;
so that there was none like thee before thee, neither after thee shall any arise like unto thee.”
In these words, we can trust the judgment of GOD in
His personal assurance that the counsel given by Solomon is heaven-led and therefore accurate in establishing Bible-obedient
Among the most important
lessons on salvation is to understand how GOD provided eternal life for His children, “In the beginning.” When
Adam and Eve were created they were blessed with GOD’S provision for eternal life. GOD ordained that the fruit from
“the tree of life” would provide man’s immortality. But when Adam and Eve fell under the dominion of sin,
GOD had to prevent their continued eating of the life-giving fruit as it is written: “And the LORD God said, Behold,
the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life,
and eat, and live for ever: Therefore the LORD God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from whence
he was taken. So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which
turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.” Gen.3:22-24. To paraphrase GOD’S command to Adam in the
beginning: ‘You may eat of all the fruit of the garden that I have provided for you, but of this one tree ye shall not
eat of its fruit; for it is poison and it will kill you My beloved Adam: I have commanded you to live, I did not create you
to die.’ Adam understood this. The purpose of the forbidden fruit was not to tempt Adam but to illustrate GOD’S
everlasting gift of the power of choice, and thus, fortify the joy of freedom to follow one’s destiny in accordance
with conscience to guide the morality of every decision.
adversary, Satan seized the dominion of Earth from Adam; and from then on, every living thing on Earth was given a death-sentence
from the sin that Satan led our premier parents to commit. Adam was not alive before GOD created him and neither would he
retain any consciousness after he died. GOD specifically told Adam: “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,
till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return.”
Gen.3:19. It is as Solomon said, “Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto
God who gave it”—“that in all points as he came, so shall he go.” Eccl.12:7; 5:16.
But today, GOD encourages us, for planted in the New
Jerusalem is “the tree of life.” The redeemed will eat of it’s fruit and thus restore man’s immortality
as Jesus promised: “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh
will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.” Rev.2:7. Through the fruit of
this tree alone will man share in the Immortal Life of Jesus Who the Apostle Paul proclaimed “is the blessed and only
Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords; WHO ONLY HATH IMMORTALITY.” I Tim.6:15,16.
The Bible clearly identifies the source of man’s immortality,
and its location today is in heaven, as it is written of the New Jerusalem: “In the midst of the street of it, and on
either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month:
and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations…Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they
may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” Rev.22:2,14. So, when Paul speaks
of how “this mortal must put on immortality” (I Cor.15:54) he refers only to the saved, not to the lost. The tree
of life = eternal life. There is no tree of life on the banks of hell!
Are there other Bible writers, who verify the words of Solomon on the unconscious state of the dead?
Psalms 6:5 For in death
there is no remembrance of thee: in the grave who shall give thee thanks?
Psalms 115:17 The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down
Psalms 146:4 His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his
earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.
Does the New Testament concur
with the writers of the Old Testament?
Acts 2:29,34 David…is both
dead and buried…For David is not ascended into the heavens.
The very first doctrine that the Holy Spirit led the Apostle Peter to
preach on the day of Pentecost stated clearly that death is an unconscious state just like sleep.
The very first lie
spoken on earth was when Satan told our Premier Mother Eve: “Ye shall not surely die.” Gen.3:4. If men truly gave
thought to the permanence of death, multitudes more would consider the Gospel of Jesus Christ and be saved for “eternal
life” in “the kingdom of heaven.”
By the world’s religions promoting the so-called “natural immortality” of the soul they deny the
greatest promise of Christ’s salvation: “the power of His resurrection” (Phil.3:10). They have literally
removed the key doctrine of Christ’s deliverance: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son,
that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Jn.3:16 The word, “perish”
does not mean eternal life in hellfire, but this is the common rendering given in the churches.
As a result, today’s Christianity has gutted the most
potent prophecy for the redeemed: “O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?” I Cor.15:55. With
the pinnacle doctrine of GOD’S salvation universally removed by the religions of earth, including Christianity, the
church has had to come up with another reason to serve GOD: using the fear of eternal suffering in the fires of hell as the
means to fill the pews. “I don’t want to go to hell” is the only reason most people go to church. It is
the fear of punishment and hope of reward that prods them, not because of Christ’s great love in bearing the punishment
“for the sins of the whole world:” a punishment called “the second death:” a death He was willing
to die alone to keep His children from having to face—which is the knowledge of eternal separation from life and love
(I Jn.2:2; Rev.20:6).
What verse of
Scripture does today’s Christianity teach to support their belief in the sustained consciousness after death?
II Corinthians 5:8 We are
confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the LORD.
In that passage of II Corinthians 5, the Apostle Paul is expounding his fervent impatience to be free of “the
body of this death” (Rom.7:24) and receive the glorified body to be given him at Christ's 2nd Advent. Paul wrote
that it is Christ “who shall change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body” (Phil.3:21).
But Paul’s intended lesson has been removed and replaced with a pagan doctrine that has no sanction from Scripture,
thereby making Paul contradict other Bible writers as well as his own words: “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ
shall all be made alive [meaning: they are not alive now]. But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward
they that are Christ's at His coming.” I Cor.15:22,23.
The Bible teaches that the only ones in heaven
today are Enoch, Moses, Elijah, and those resurrected with Jesus. With the exception of those men, none from the human race
are in heaven today. Nor will life be restored to them until Jesus comes at His 2nd Advent. That’s what “the power
of His resurrection” is all about: to raise from the grave the righteous among men! Enoch and Elijah, who were translated
from the living (Gen.5:24; II Ki.2:11); Moses, who was resurrected immediately after his death (Deut. 34:5; Jude 9); and those
resurrected with Jesus Christ at His resurrection (Matt. 27:52,53) are the assurances that Christ will come again to raise
the dead and translate the living, taking every faithful soul to His “Father’s house” in heaven (Jn.14:2)
to spend a thousand years reviewing the history of Earth (I Cor.6:2,3; Rev.20:4). Apart from those holy men cited above, all
others, from Adam to the last man remain unconscious in the grave until Christ returns as Jesus so plainly said: “And
this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life;
and I will raise him up at the last day.” Jn.6:40.
The most widely used verse to promote a continued consciousness after the death of the body are the words of Jesus
to the thief crucified at His side: “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in
paradise.” Lu.23:43. The Greek New Testament of the Apostles had no punctuation. Something as simple as a comma has
misled the church. The comma should be placed thus, “And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee to day, thou shalt
be with me in paradise.” This is verified when Christ was resurrected on the first day and he said to Mary, “Touch
me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father.” Jn.20:17.
Now, there are Satan’s grand displays of power, leading the world’s religions to ignore the Bible’s
warnings about the dangers of sin by cementing men to their sins with miracles that oppose the key doctrines of salvation
through Jesus Christ. We ask the question: Do miracles occur to foster rebellion against the Word of GOD? Ten thousand apparitions
of Satan cloaked as the Virgin Mary have been recorded; even giving visions to Bible illiterate souls from the pope on down
to little Catholic girls who stood outside of GOD’S jurisdiction to protect them from Satan’s bewitching power.
But GOD forbid us to have anything
to do with the dead, period! (See Deut.18:9-13). Fear and cruelty are his weapons of deception to corrupt people’s view
of Jesus Christ, slandering His benevolent character of self-sacrificing love. But Satan also uses a variety of peace and
safety messages, leading people to a false sense of security. But GOD has provided every guideline to help us discern the
boundaries between the true and false demonstrations of the miraculous. Jesus gave His assurance on this: “Behold, I
have foretold you all things.” Mk.13:23.
What about "life-after-death experiences" that are so popular in both the church and the world?
Matthew 24:24 For there
shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible,
they shall deceive the very elect.
16:14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world,
to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.
Anything that implies a continued consciousness after death is a ploy
of the devil to deceive people into believing that the church of Rome and nominal Protestantism are GOD’S true ministers,
even while they live in open sin and evangelize others to share in their sins. The testimonies range from men who descended
down a long, dark and fearful corridor, or others who describe ascending to a warm light, or those who received an angel’s
escort to heaven, or those who saw and spoke with deceased family members: all of these “visions” stem from “the
prince of this world” and have no sanction from Scripture. True Bible doctrine must be continuously reliable no less
than man relies on his knowledge of the laws of physics to determine the safe boundaries for his engineering and technology.
The Apostle Paul gave a most profound warning to every Christian regarding the powers of evil, and their capability
to deceive, even to the impersonation of the Apostles themselves: “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any
other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” Gal.1:8. The doctrine on the
unconscious state of the dead is key to our success to withstand the closing agenda of Satan in the end times. He is going
to employ every device to deceive souls to remain in sin and thus stand condemned before Jesus at the end of time. But for
those who love the truth, “as the truth is in Jesus” we can take heart: “But ye, brethren, are not in darkness,
that that day should overtake you as a thief.” “Whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected:
hereby know we that we are in him.” I Thess.5:4; I Jn.2:5