Welcome. I started this blog as a means of sharing what the Lord is showing me in His Word (The Bible) concerning the born again person and his relationship and fellowship with God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. As the Holy Spirit leads us into truth, we will grow in Christ likeness, learning to “walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects,..” (Colossians 1:10) I hope you will join me on this pilgrimage and share your feedback, both positive and negative.
Today the post is the result of a question from one of our relatives concerning what did Jesus do while His earthly body was dead in the grave. Hope you find it interesting.
I close with Paul’s advice to Timothy concerning becoming more Christ like. Thank you for visiting.
“Pay Close Attention To Yourself…”
What Did Jesus Do Between His Death On The Cross and His Resurrection
As best I can tell by searching the scriptures, the Lord Jesus Christ went to the following two places after His physical death. The reader is encouraged to look up the scriptures noted and read them. A New American Standard Bible was used for this study.
1. PARADISE: In Luke 23: 39 – 43 we have the story of the two criminals being crucified with Christ. One of them rails against Him and the other stands up for Him saying that “this man has done nothing wrong”. This second criminal tells the Lord “Jesus, remember me when you come in Your kingdom!” And the Lord replies “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.”
Paradise in the New Testament is the same as Abraham’s bosom mentioned in Jesus’ story in Luke 16:19-31. The term “Abraham’s bosom” represents blessedness after death. Because Abraham was the founder of the Hebrew nation, to be honored with his intimacy was the highest bliss. The term “bosom” is derived either from the Roman custom of reclining on the left side at meals, Lazarus being in the place of honor at Abraham’s right, leaning on his breast; or from its appropriateness as expressing closest fellowship (see John 1:18, 13:23). (Source: Pictorial Bible Dictionary)
Here The Lord tells a story concerning a rich man and a beggar that both die. Abraham’s bosom is where the righteous Old Testament people went when they died. As I understand it they could not go into God’s presence since the sin question had never once-and-for-all been settled. The Lord’s death for our sins and His resurrection settled the sin question once-and-for-all; therefore, in Hebrews 12:22-23 when it describes our new home it says “you have come to””…..the spirits of righteous men made perfect,…”. This statement refers to the occupants of Abraham’s bosom being made perfect because of what the Lord did and they are now in God’s presence.
The Old Testament Jew believed in Sheol (the grave) which was divided into Hades where the non-righteous person (a.k.a. the lost) went and Abraham’s bosom where the righteous Old Testament dead went. In the story the rich man died and “lifted up his eyes, being in torment, and saw Abraham far away and Lazarus in his bosom”. He wanted Abraham to send Lazarus to dip his figure in the water and put it on his tongue since he was “in agony in this flame”. But since a great chasm is between the two places, he could not. The beggar was being comforted since he had suffered much in his earthly life.
You are encouraged to read the story in Luke 16 for yourself. I believe it is an actual true story in the sense that the people are real people who had lived and tells what happened after their death. It also sheds light on the importance of God’s Word as far as salvation is concerned.
Evidently, The Lord and the just-saved criminal both went to Abraham’s bosom/paradise after dying. Though it is not clearly stated anywhere that I know of in the scripture, the Lord could of revealed to the righteous dead the gospel; i.e. what He had accomplished through the substitutionary atonement, future resurrection and that He was the promised sacrifice that all of the Old Testament sacrifices pointed to and that these people were trusting in for their personal salvation. It is interesting to note that Moses and Elijah appeared on the Mount of Transfiguration to talk with a glorified Lord Jesus about His coming death and resurrection; therefore, maybe the people in Abraham’s bosom were already enlightened about the gospel.
2. TARTARUS: In I Peter 3:18-22 it says that the Lord went and “made proclamation to the spirits now in prison who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah…”
The Greek scholar Wuest tells us there are just two prisons in the unseen world where evil spirits are confined. Tartarus is where fallen angels are kept and the Bottomless Pit in Revelation 9:1-12 is the prison of demons.
In I Peter 3:19-20 and II Peter 2:4-5, Peter associates these spirits (a.k.a. fallen angels) with the period before the Flood mentioned in Genesis 6: 1-7. These are fallen angels who committed fornication with human evil women and created a hybrid race part angel and part man. It is suggested that Satan intended to wipe out the human race and thereby foil God’s plan of redemption. In regards to this “wiping out”, remember that there were only eight people on the ark during the flood. All the other righteous people on earth had died naturally, been murdered or died in some accident. If they would have been alive, they would have been on the ark with Noah. They would not of suffered the wrath of God; i.e. the flood.
God would not have incarnated Himself in a race of part angel and part man. Therefore, the divine plan of the incarnation and substitutionary atonement of the Son of God would not have happened. This is probably why God destroyed the whole world with the flood except for Noah and his 7 family members. The New Testament tells us that God put these fallen angels into a prison that they will never get out of until they are cast into the lake of fire with death, hades and Satan at the end of time. See Revelation 20:10. Some authors state that the demons are the disembodied spirits of the fallen angels’ hybrid children and some say they are fallen angels.
The Lord went to this prison and made a proclamation to these fallen angels. Though it does not reveal the text of this proclamation in the New Testament, it is thought to be a proclamation of victory over Satan’s scheme to stop God’s plan of salvation. Praise His Mighty Name!