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The Daily Word of Righteousness
The Afterlife, #8
For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God? (I Peter 4:17)
I do not believe the deceased members of the elect are sinning now. In fact, it would be my opinion that prior to the coming of Christ to the earth, most if not all of them were resting in the spirit realm. Once the atonement had been made, however, and Christ rose from the dead, the deceased saints would begin the program of redemption. This is how I see it, based on Peter's words
We are aware that God is going to shake the heaven and the earth. Daniel states, if I am understanding him correctly, that some of the heavenly host will be cast out of Heaven because of their disobedience. Perhaps this is referring to the heavenly host of angels, although I doubt it.
Because of rebellion, the host of the saints and the daily sacrifice were given over to it. It prospered in everything it did, and truth was thrown to the ground. (Daniel 8:12).
One problem with our thinking is we view the spirit realm, the Throne of God, and so forth, as being far up in outer space. It may be closer to the truth that the spirit realm, including Heaven, is all around us, only invisible. We already have come to Mount Zion. We already—though we are walking on the earth—are at the right hand of God in Christ. What we are seeing and experiencing may be a visible expression of spiritual reality.
I wonder if the two worlds, the spirit and the physical, are not closer than we understand!
Yes—we can be hidden with Christ in God, and then seduced from our position. This is true, I think, whether or not we are alive physically on the earth.
After all, Satan and his angels were seduced from their heavenly state although they were not alive physically on the earth at the time.
We are far too blithe today, supposing that after we die we are out of danger. Perhaps this is not the case.
Over the last several years many ministers of the Gospel have fallen into sin. These were people who at one time had been seated in the heavenlies with the Lord Jesus Christ. Yet Satan was able to seduce them from their position in Christ.
I certainly do not understand all there is to know about the afterlife. But from what I read in the Bible, I don't believe the afterlife resembles our traditions. For example, we picture that we would be safe in Heaven. If we will read our Bible we will see that our safety is in the center of the will of God in Christ, not in Heaven or any other place. Our safety is in our relationship to Christ, not in our location.
For so long we have been under the impression that it is impossible to be in Heaven and yet have a sinful nature. The truth is, sin originated in Heaven around the Throne of God. A great company of angels, apparently, have rebelled against the Father. Being in the spirit realm does not save us from sin. Sin began in the spirit realm and came from there down to the earth.
To be continued.