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Where do sinners go when they die?

Caller: Where do sinners go when they die? To a kind of purgatory or something?

Pastor Doug: Well, there’s all kinds of wacky theories out there, everything from reincarnation to limbo to Abraham’s bosom to purgatory. The Bible tells us that when a person dies they sleep until the resurrection. If they’re lost it’s called the resurrection of the damned. Jesus says, Behold the hour is coming in the Gospel of John in the which all that are in the graves will hear His voice and come forth, they that have done good to the resurrection of life, they that have done evil to the resurrection of damnation. And so you’ve got two resurrections. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 4 the Lord will descend from heaven with a shout and the dead in Christ will rise first.

Well then you go to Revelation 20 and – oh, by the way, if the dead in Christ rise first, then who would be second? That would be the lost, right? The ones that are not in Christ. Revelation 20 says that ‘Blessed are those that have part in the first resurrection’. The rest of the dead come forth in the second resurrection in Revelation 20. So it’s very clear that there is a resurrection of the damned that Jesus refers to, so until that resurrection when they are judged, at the great white throne judgment, the wicked are in their graves. It says they are reserved—Peter says in the New Testament—they are reserved until the day of judgment.

Caller: Alright.

Pastor Doug: It sounds to me like he would enjoy our lesson on the dead, Are the Dead Really Dead? We’ll send that to you for free. It’s got all the scriptures on what happens when the dead die, the saved and the lost, where do they go, what do they experience. Let me tell you where a lot of confusion comes in before I go to the next call, David. Are you still there?

Caller: Yeah.

Pastor Doug: The Bible is very clear. You and I live in a dimension of time. You know, we look at clocks and watches all day long. God is not restricted to that. When someone dies, whether they’re saved or lost, they don’t know about the time that they’re asleep as far as we’re concerned. Their next conscious thought is the resurrection of the just, or, if they’re lost, the resurrection of judgment and punishment. You see what I’m saying?

They’re not floating around in limbo. They’re not burning in purgatory. But as far as they’re concerned there’s no time. So when our loved ones die, to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord that means their next conscious thought is the resurrection. Do you see what I’m saying? There’s no time for them. But as far as we’re concerned, they haven’t gone yet because the resurrection hasn’t happened. Anyway, send for the lesson. All you have to do is call and we’ll send it to you, okay?

Caller: Alright.

Co-Host: David, copy this number down: 1-800-835-6747. Are the Dead Really Dead. Ask for that lesson.



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