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Page 507



2. Sleep refers to one's physically unresponsive state until awakened. In this sense, all the bodies of the dead are unresponsive until awakened on the great resurrection day (e.g. Matthew 27:52 and John 11:11-13).

3. Sleep refers to a peaceful escape from the cares and problems of one's life on earth. In this sense, God's children are said to fall asleep in death -to peacefully escape from sin and its evil consequences (e.g. Acts 7:60 and I Corinthians 15:18).

Sleep, however, does not refer to an unconscious state of the soul after death. We know this because the Bible speaks of souls consciously experiencing the feelings and doing the activities shown in the chart below immediately after death -in their intermediate state.

SAVED SOULS ARE CONSCIOUS IN THE INTERMEDIATE STATE
After death, saved souls consciously:

1. Enter and live in heaven

And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with Me in paradise.


-Luke 23:43

4. Are present with Christ

We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.


-II Corinthians 5:8

2. Converse with God in heaven

And when He had opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of them that were slain for the Word of God, and for the testimony which they held:
and they cried with a loud voice, saying, How long, 0 Lord, holy and true, dost Thou not judge and avenge our blood on them that dwell on the earth?


-Revelation 6:9-10

5. Live and reign with Christ

And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the Word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.


-Revelation 20:4

3. Serve and praise God

And they sung as it were a new song before the throne, and before the four beasts, and the elders: and no man could learn that song but the hundred and forty and four thousand, which were redeemed from the earth. These are they which were not defiled with women; for they are virgins. These are they which follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth. These were redeemed from among men, being the firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb.


-Revelation 14:3-4

6. Have fellowship with the heavenly angels and saints

The rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes.


-Luke l6:22b-23a

7. Enjoy a far better, perfect, sinless state

For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better.


-Philippians 1:23

To the general assembly and church of 1he firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect.


-Hebrews 12:23

 

And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.

-Revelation 14:13

And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose.

-Matthew 27:52

Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.

I Corinthians 15:18




 

How does each item listed .in the corresponding chart contradict the idea of souls sleeping in dormancy after death?



Read Luke 20:37-38 .

Now that the dead are raised, even Moses shewed at the bush, when he calleth the Lord the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.
For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living: for all live unto Him.

Why would this verse be difficult to interpret if the souls of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob were in a dormant state?


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