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  1. Dead--the condition of . . .

The Condition of the Dead

Due to extensive talks about this subject with lots of scripture swapping, it is obvious that this subject shall remain controversial. Nonetheless, it will be presented in a logical and scriptural manner.
Disclaimer: It may not be possible for me to treat all possible side issues, but I will try. If I miss some point that you believe should be addressed, please contact me.

The Condition of the Dead

Let's start with the Christian writings. The following scripture contains much material even beyond this subject. However, only the present subject will be pursued here.

Three points are explored. 1. those who have fallen asleep. 2. asleep in Christ. 3. we the living shall not precede those; rather, the ones asleep--that is, dead--shall rise first.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-16 But we do not wish you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them who are falling asleep,—lest ye be sorrowing, even as the rest also, who are without hope; 14For, if we believe that, Jesus, died, and rose again, so, also will, God, bring forth with him, them who have fallen asleep through Jesus; 15For, this, unto you, do we say, by a word of the Lord,—that, we, the living who are left unto the Presence of the Lord, shall in nowise get before them who have fallen asleep; 16Because, the Lord himself, with a word of command, with a chief-messenger’s voice, and with a trumpet of God, shall descend from heaven,—and, the dead in Christ, shall rise, first, 17After that, we, the living who are left, together with them, shall be caught away, in clouds, to meet the Lord in the air:—and, thus, evermore, with the Lord, shall we be! (Rotherham)
"Concerning them who are falling asleep -- lest ye be sorrowing" has only one possible interpretation. The fact that sorrowing is indicated means that these are the faithful that have died -- they are asleep in death!
John 6:39 Now this is the will of the Father who sent me: that of all that he hath given me, I should lose nothing; but should raise it up again in the last day. (DRC)
39 . . . l that he has given me but that I should resurrect it at the last day. (NW)
The dead in Christ shall in no way rise until the presence of our Lord Christ Jesus. That is the certainty of the above scriptures! (Point 1 & 2) The Saints that live to see the presence of Christ must wait until it is time after the Great Tribulation, and until after the others have been resurrected to themselves become glorified! (Point 3) And, as another scripture says, this is the first resurrection. Thus no one receives neither the first nor the second resurrection until Christ second coming, specifically during his presence. (Rev 20:5)

Until during Christ's presence, gr. parousia, which some refer to as second coming (however, not the gr. erchomai), the following scripture shall remain true, "And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven." (KJV, John 3:13)

When will Christ sound God's trumpet? (1 Thess 4:16) Matthew tells us that this will be after the Great Tribulation!
 Matt 24:29-31, And immediately after the tribulation of those days, the sun shall be darkened and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of heaven shall be moved: 30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all tribes of the earth mourn: and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with much power and majesty. 31And he shall send his angels with a trumpet, and a great voice: and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the farthest parts of the heavens to the utmost bounds of them. (DRC)
Since the dead in Christ and all the other dead await Christ second coming before any resurrection commences. In what state are these dead?
Job 14:12, And man that has lain down in death shall certainly not rise again till the heaven be dissolved, and they shall not awake from their sleep. (AB)
Here in Job eternal death is equated with eternal sleep. Thus we see that some will sleep forever without a resurrection.  In many translations the following scripture 1 Cor 11:30 says "many sleep;" other translations say "are dead." Again we see that death is equated with sleep.  Remember that Christians believe in the resurrection. It is probably for this reason that the scripture tells us that the dead are considered to be as if asleep!  In John chapter eleven, Jesus himself shares this sentiment!

Below are several different translations' rendering of one scripture: 1 Cor 11:30

(NJB) That is why many of you are weak and ill and a good number have died.

(NIV) ". . . a number of you have fallen asleep."

(NW) "That is why many among YOU are weak and sickly, and quite a few are sleeping [in death].

(French Louis Segond) "pour cela qu'il y a parmi vous beaucoup d'infirmes et de malades, et qu'un grand nombre sont morts.
Translation: "and that a large number are dead."

(KJV) For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

(Byington) That is why there are among you many weakly and sick, and a number have gone to their rest.


Jeremiah 51:39 In their heat I will set them drink: and I will make them drunk, that they may slumber, and sleep an everlasting sleep, and awake no more, saith the Lord. (DRC)

Sleep here equals death, this assurance is doubly reinforced by the scripture previously quoted: "concerning them who are falling asleep,—lest ye be sorrowing" - a quote that came from 1 Thess. please confirm by scrolling back.

 John 11:11-14,  Our friend Lazarus sleepeth; but I go that I may awake him out of sleep. 12Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleepeth he will do well. 13Now Jesus spoke of his death: but they thought that he had spoken of taking rest in sleep. 14Then said Jesus to them plainly, Lazarus is dead. (Webster)

What is the condition of the dead? Page 2

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