Yesterday the world woke up to shocking news that a flight with 9 persons aboard had crashed killing everyone including famous preacher Dr. Myles Munroe and his wife.
As shocking and troubling as the news were, many people have taken comfort in the ‘hope’ that such a prominent personality and preacher must have gone to heaven. Sentiments such as RIP and our last breath here is our first breath there have flooded social media.
This begs the question, where do people go when they die? Righteous or not (and we are not holding the position of God to judge or to claim Myles Munroe was righteous befitting heaven or not) where do people go when they die?
The catholic church has held a long tradition that purports people go to heaven. This teaching was drawn from an example of a rich man who died and went to a place of torment. In their teaching, the catholic church even introduced a new word to Christianity called PURGATORY.
In this doctrine, the church claims that ‘dead sinners’ go to a place of ‘punishment’ to ‘pay off’ their sins. Once all their sins have been paid in full, they are ‘released’ to heaven. They even claim that you can pay to the church by money or doing righteous deeds on behalf of those in purgatory to ‘lessen’ their punishment as it were.
Other churches have taken over the teachings with the doctrine that at death, it is either heaven or hell. So two questions, where do people go when they die? And is hell real?
Death is compared to sleep so there must be some analogy between a state of sleep and a state of death, and this analogy must pertain to that which renders sleep a peculiar condition. Our condition in sleep differs from our condition when awake simply in this, that when we are soundly asleep, we are entirely unconscious. In this respect death is like sleep; that is, the dead are unconscious. This figure is frequently used to represent the condition of the dead.
Daniel 12:2 And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
Matthew 27:52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
Christ himself represented death as a sleep saying Lazarus was asleep in death. Lazarus would have remained unconscious sleeping in the grave until the resurrection had he not been raised by Christ.
John 11:11 Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go, that I may awake him out of sleep.
Similarly the concept of an eternal burning fire that burns the sinners daily is contrary to the nature of God and the whole bible.
Here are 5 reasons why,
1. Something in our spirit tells us that torturing people is morally wrong-Then why will God torture people in a burning fire daily forever and yet claim to be a God of love? See, the concept of hell is wrong as it portrays God as an angry vengeful unforgiving being somethign that is totally wrong.
2. The concept of eternal, conscious torment runs contrary to the whole testimony in scripture. No where in the bible do we have proof that sinners are burnt everyday of eternity. We know they are destroyed forever.
3. The final judge of each individual is Jesus, and torturing people seems contradictory to his character.Obvious right?
4. Jesus would become a hypocrite, demanding that we nonviolently love our enemies while he does the complete opposite.
5. We simply can’t get past the idea that we are more gracious and merciful than Jesus himself. READ THE FULL POST HERE
Now whether Myles Munroe was righteous or not, there is no biblical proof that he is in heaven nor hell. The biblical proof we have is that like the many who are dead, The Late Munroe is resting awaiting the second coming of Christ where he will resurrect either to eternal life or eternal damnation-and that decision is with Christ as he is the final judge.
Paul told the Christians in Thessalonica not to sorrow about death as others do because at the Second Coming God would bring forth from the grave those who slept in Jesus.
1 Thessalonians 4:13 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For 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:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
Job says the dead are sleeping in the grave waiting for the appointed time. Waiting for the day of resurrection when the heavens are rolled together Rev 6:14 at the Second Coming.
Job 14:10-15 But man dieth, and wasteth away: yea, man giveth up the ghost, and where is he?
11 As the waters fail from the sea, and the flood decayeth and drieth up:
12 So man lieth down, and riseth not: till the heavens be no more, they shall not awake, nor be raised out of their sleep.
13 O that thou wouldest hide me in the grave, that thou wouldest keep me secret, until thy wrath be past, that thou wouldest appoint me a set time, and remember me!
14 If a man die, shall he live again? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come.
15 Thou shalt call, and I will answer thee: thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands.