Death is God’s just consequence for sin. “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).
Because of sin, everyone has deserved death – eternal separation from God in hell.
Jesus, holy and sinless, is the only One who can pay the penalty for our sins.
In the Old Testament, those who had faith in God and in the coming Messiah were not able to enter heaven after death because the atoning blood of Jesus Christ had not yet been shed (Hebrews 10:11-12). Sheol/Hades/Hell is the Old Testament term given to the place where the souls of both believers and unbelievers would go; it was separated into two parts with an impassable gulf between them
(1) “paradise” (or,“Abraham’s bosom”) and (2) “torments”
Lazarus went to paradise because he believed God’s Word (faith)—he did not go to paradise because he was poor. The rich man went to torments, not because he was rich, but because he died in his sins—he had faith in his wealth but not in God’s Word (unbelief).
In this life, there is no impassable gulf between our sin nature and grace, we may pass from sin to God by faith in His Messiah; but if we die in our sins, there is no coming out.
Jesus Christ makes three basic statements about the subject of life after death:
1. There is an afterlife, Mark 12:26-27; John 14:1-4.
2. When a person dies, there are two different eternities to which they may go, Luke 16:22-23; Heb. 9:27; Matt. 13:42; Matt. 25:46.
3. There is a way to ensure a positive experience after death, John 3:14-18;Matt. 7:13-14.
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