Are The Dead Alive Now?
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.
II Corinthians 4: 4 -- In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
‘Elect’ in Matthew 24: 24 is referring to the "chosen out, preferred, selected". Is it possible you fall into this category? Can you be deceived by the god of this world who is second in power to the true God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ? You may have been up to this point in your life, but if you believe the Word of God stated in this teaching, you will never again be confused as to the answer to the question presented in the title of this teaching.
This is one of two subjects that can cause no end of confusion among believers. I refer to these people as ‘unbelieving believers’. They do not study God’s Word rightly divided, but choose, by their own free will, to believe the commandments, doctrines, and traditions of men. Our center of reference for all of our learning and teaching is the Word of God and nothing but the Word.
In II Corinthians, God gives us more information about the type of people that Satan uses to carry out his manipulation of God’s truth. Remember, if you are not studying the genuine, you will never recognize the counterfeit. Satan is a master of deception and as I’ve always said: "If you think you can’t be tricked, you already have been." By studying and applying God’s Word in your everyday life, your thoughts will be crystal clear and you will have the ability to separate truth from error.
II Corinthians 11: 13, 14, 15 – For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
These are tremendous Scriptures. You should study them much. God speaks to you clearly on this subject warning you about the methods and devices of the devil.
Did you know that your life is made up of the sum total of all the decisions you have ever made? After you read this teaching, YOU WILL HAVE TO MAKE A DECISION. Either the dead are alive or they are dead until Jesus Christ returns.
Can you imagine Jesus Christ returning to raise everyone from the dead and then saying . . . "Oops! I forgot. Everyone is up already." ‘Ridiculous’ is quite the understatement, isn’t it? It’s for idiots to believe and there are very many of them.
II Timothy 2: 15 -- Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. [emphasis added]
When the Word of God is worked with a mathematical exactness and scientific precision, it is as obvious as the day is bright that THE DEAD ARE DEAD and will stay in their unconsciousness state until Jesus Christ returns. Then everyone will get up whether they like it or not. This complete teaching can be taken from chapter 15 in I Corinthians and we will be studying a number of Scriptures from that chapter.
On the other hand, the counterfeit god of this world will seemingly offer proof, by twisting the Scriptures out of context [private interpretation], and by other means to get you to believe that the dead are alive. His methods in the world are referred to as ‘spiritualism’ (the operation of devil spirits) in the form of seances, mediums, ouija boards, ESP, hypnotism, astrology, misfortune tellers and the list goes on and on. If the devil can get you to believe that dead people are really alive in a different realm, then why would you care if Jesus Christ returns? It is the hope of the return of Jesus Christ that gives us our motivation to go on, to persevere, to study, to renew our mind, changing our lifestyle to line up with what the Word of God teaches us.
Romans 13: 14 -- But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ [put on his thoughts], and make not provision for the flesh [the five senses], to fulfil the lusts [over-desires] thereof.
Without the hope, we fall into a rut similar to a mundane existence, doing and accomplishing nothing in our lives. Many people, often born-again, live their whole lives believing a lie.
I Corinthians 15: 22 -- For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
As a result of Adam’s original sin, all men eventually die unless Jesus Christ returns in his or her lifetime. The Word goes on to inform us that when Christ comes back, all those who died will be made alive. Could God have put it any simpler? You want to argue about it, argue with God. I didn’t write the Bible. Holy men of God wrote it as they were moved/inspired by the Holy Spirit.
Galatians 1: 11, 12 – But I certify [guarantee] you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by revelation of [from] Jesus Christ.
Not only does Satan’s devil spirits influence and persuade people that dead people are living, the enemy counterfeits and imitates the dead person’s vocal chords in seances so that they can speak to their living relatives. Most often the devil makes it appear like these departed ones are not only alive, but are having a grand old time. Like, hey man, it’s fun to be dead. This can make a living relative want to join their lost loved ones. They may, on purpose, simply quit believing and lose their will to live. Worse yet, they may consider and attempt suicide. This could result in a nervous breakdown and being committed to a psychiatric ward or even a state mental hospital. It happens. I worked in a state hospital and I was not surprised to read in a patient’s chart that they had some interest or involvement in the occult at some point in their life. Satan comes on like an angel of light at first – then he waits for the right moment, usually a time of weakness, then he ‘nails’ you – and the word ‘mercy’ does not exist in his vocabulary. Again, we should remember:
II Corinthians 11: 14 – And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
I warn you from my heart, because I love you, DO NOT get involved in any way with any form of the occult. You will OPEN THE DOOR to the enemy by your own free will, and he will attempt to destroy your life for the rest of your life.
When I was in high school, I had, for a while, developed a habit of using a ouija board. I almost died twice and my life was eventually in a shambles. Every day was like a living death. I lost my family and a home I loved through my parent’s divorce, gained a lot of weight, dropped out of two colleges, lost my girlfriend whom I loved dearly, and wound up living in one room for about 8 years. I’m not telling you the bad parts!
After immersing myself in God’s rightly divided Word in 1974, all the devil’s oppression slowly left. By 1980, I had a home again with my Dad and his new wife, lost all the excess weight, swam a mile a day, and returned to college only to graduate first in my class in 2 of my 4 years. The second two years were almost all straight A’s. Who gets the glory?! GOD.
My picture went in the newspaper and I often considered if some of my old high school teachers "dropped dead" when they saw the article. (By the way, if so, they are still dead).
How did this massive change in my life come about?
James 4: 7 – Submit [addict] yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Philippians 4: 13 -- I can do all thing through Christ which [who] strengtheneth me.
I am still as enthusiastic about God’s Word today as I was back in 1975. There is something Jesus Christ said back in the gospels that I want to share with you. He was talking to one of his disciples and asked him this type of question. "Who do you think will be the more thankful, dedicated, committed and enthusiastic believer? The one who was delivered from the least oppression or the one who was delivered from the most oppression and possession?" Again, glory to God – I am that latter person.
Today, I am afraid of NO ONE. I am physically fit walking about 40 miles a week. I live in a new home paid off. I give away many material things so I don’t get burdened down. I don’t smoke, drink, gamble or go near drugs. I found favor with God and He gave me a dynamic wife who I sometimes call "superwoman". What a change when I took a stand for God’s Word. It’s truly beyond my comprehension. Why did I tell you this?! I want you to know that I can destroy it all in one instant by consulting a medium, getting hypnotized, buying a ouija board, not studying God’s Word and getting involved in any form of the occult such as astrology. One can destroy his or her life that fast.
Now let’s get back to the part of our teaching where the enemy makes it appear that dead people are smoking $300 cigars in their new life after death.
Man’s basic spiritual problem has always been the integrity and accuracy of God’s Word – not to mention the fact that people DON’T EVEN READ IT. If people who are supposedly dead are enjoying themselves more than a person who is alive, then why did God write the following Scripture?
I Corinthians 15: 26 – The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.
If death is an enemy, then how can it be a pleasant experience? Someone is lying. Who is the author of all lies?
Numbers 23: 19a – God is not a man, that he should lie; . . . . . . .
I John 1: 5 – This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
Is lying darkness? I think so. Then the lie must come from only one other source.
John 10: 10 -- The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I [Jesus Christ] am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
Next, we will examine some specific occurrences in the gospels and other parts of God’s Word which will make it even clearer to you that the dead are NOT alive, but are in an unconscious state awaiting the return of Christ. Some of you who have studied Absolute Bible Study for some time have learned that the original Bible texts did not have any punctuation – it was all added by man. I am going to show you where the erroneous placement of ONE COMMA can cause no end of confusion pertaining to our topic. It will truly amaze you.
Luke 23: 42 – And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
Watch carefully the next verse.
Luke 23: 43 – And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise [on earth].
Now notice the placement of the comma (,) AFTER the word ‘thee’. That comma was placed there by the translators and is not a part of the original God-breathed Word. It is private interpretation.
II Peter 1: 20 -- Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private [idios -- one's own] interpretation.
If you leave the comma where it is, it is as if Jesus Christ is saying to the malefactor that ‘today’ you will be with me in paradise (referring to the third heaven and earth, far in the future). This supports the erroneous life immediately after death doctrine. Now let’s repeat this verse with the proper punctuation so that the verse is in alignment and harmony with the rest of God’s Word.
Luke 23: 43 – And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee To day, shalt thou be with me in paradise [on earth].
First of all, ‘shalt thou’ is a poor translation and should read "thou shalt". DO YOU SEE THE MAJOR IMPACT THAT THIS LITTLE COMMA HAS ON THE MEANING OF THE VERSE? Now the verse is saying that today, Jesus Christ tells the malefactor that he shall (future tense) be with him in paradise. When will that be? When Jesus Christ returns and raises everyone from the dead. When the malefactor dies, he will stay dead until that time. . . . . and so will everyone else that dies.
There are a number of areas like this in God’s Word which need to be rightly divided to be understood. We will examine a few more.
There is the so-called Transfiguration, as recorded in Matthew Chapter 17.
Matthew 17: 1 - 3 – And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart, And was transfigured [changed in appearance] before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias [Elijah] talking with him.
The key word here is ‘appeared’’ in the third verse – "and behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him." The Greek word used here for "appeared" is the word ‘optomai’ which means "seeing objectively" or "envisioning".
The Greek word ‘blepo’ is ordinarily used and means "using the eyes to look at". Peter, James, and John DID NOT SEE THIS PHENOMENON WITH THEIR EYES, but with their minds. The sense of seeing with the eyes was completely bypassed. That is why Jesus Christ said what he said in verse nine (9).
Matthew 17: 9 – And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead.
The phenomenon was "a "vision". The words "trance" and "vision" used in the Bible do not have the same meaning or implications that spiritualists and psychics try to say. In the Bible, both words are used synonymously. Biblically speaking, a trance or vision is never a loss of consciousness. IT IS A DORMANT STATE OF MENTAL ACTIVITY, when God by revelation – word of knowledge, word of wisdom and discerning of spirits – gives a panoramic picture of the scene. That’s exactly what happened in this record in Matthew.
If you believe that there is life immediately after death, then what is the point of the resurrection of the dead and why was so much of the Bible written pertaining to this subject? The Bible specifically documents the resurrection of the ‘dead in Christ’ and of the ‘just’ and ‘unjust’. A number of different resurrections occur at different times.
The Sadduces did not believe in the resurrection of the dead – that’s why they were so sad you see. Seriously, God’s Word lets us know where we would stand if we did not believe in the resurrection of the dead.
I Corinthians 15: 12 – Now if Christ be preached that he arose from [among] the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?
I Corinthians 15: 13 – But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:
Why is this true? Because God is not a respecter of persons, but of conditions only. If he raised Christ from the dead and He did, then He will raise all of us from the dead.
Acts 10: 34 – Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons:
I Corinthians 15: 14 – And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.
I Corinthians 15: 15 – Yea [Moreover], and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not.
When God wants to establish a point, He will say it twice. Remember, He is showing us how futile and miserable our existence would be if there were no resurrection of the dead and no resurrection of Jesus Christ. Again, God reiterates verse 13.
I Corinthians 15: 16 – For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:
I Corinthians 15: 17– And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
God adds something here by reminding us that we are yet in our sins and have not been redeemed if Christ was not raised from the dead.
I Corinthians 15: 18 – Then they also which are fallen [fell] asleep in Christ are perished.
If all this is true, then all the believers that died after being born again such as the apostles and everyone since the day of Pentecost, are perished – their life and their believing and worship was all for nothing.
I Corinthians 15: 19 – If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable [pitied].
This is quite a negative picture of what would be if there was no resurrection of the dead, BUT THERE IS GOING TO BE A RESURRECTION and we have proof that Christ was raised, especially if we can pray in the spirit – speak in tongues. Now God presents the truth of His Word in all of its glory as we continue in I Corinthians Chapter 15.
I Corinthians 15: 20 – But [this word sets in contrast that which is said before] now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept [he was the first one raised from the dead].
I Corinthians 15: 21 – For since by man [Adam] came death, by man [Jesus Christ] came also the resurrection of the dead.
I Corinthians 15: 22 – For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
People cannot all be made alive if they are already alive. Do you believe man or do you believe God? Now you must make a decision. Make the obvious one.