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Because He Loves Us
a free audio of this study is available at the web site
compiled by Rachel Cory-Kuehl, 2012
Scripture is from New King James Version unless otherwise noted.
We are drawn to HIM as we are made aware of His love for us. He has invested each one of us with inestimable value, and will do everything divinely possible to reconcile us to Himself. This said, let’s consider the nature of man and the great plan of God for his redemption.
If God created man immortal, then his spirit (or soul) must live on after physical death. It must exist consciously somewhere. The righteous would go to be with the LORD, and the unrepentant wicked to a place of unending separation from God. But what of those who were ignorant of the LORD and of His law? What about children? Where would they go - to “Hell.” That seems grossly unjust. They had no choice. They were never informed. They never heard or understood. Yet to allow them entrance into glory without repentance, also seems unfair. They did not choose to serve the LORD or invite the indwelling of His spirit. How could their continued harmonious integration into the society of the redeemed be assured without some manipulation of their minds? And if the LORD could manipulate minds, then why didn’t He just exercise that prerogative in the first place, in Eden - and skip this whole mess!
You see why God’s creation of man - as mortal man - was the perfect design. With death an unconscious “sleep,” there is no need to send the conscious spirits of the ignorant (undecided) anywhere.
Continuing in this vein, if the LORD has retained the essence (spirit) of each person, what will He do with those who died in ignorance? Will He simply retain their spirit essence forever in suspended animation? If He loves each one, and greatly desires a relationship with any who are willing, how could He effectively end their lives without giving them the opportunity to respond to His invitation? He could not! The only question is, “When?” When will these human beings be resurrected to continue their lives? The only opening in time which “fits” with the Scriptures is The 8th Day.
Some have suggested that the LORD does not retain the essence (spirit) of those who died in ignorance. He simply leaves them dead like the animals. This theory just will not wash! The LORD loves these people. They are His created children. To leave them forever, is to give them no more value than a cow or a canary. No way!
Most believers today would agree that to intentionally end the life of a developing fetus is a sin against God, who gives life. But what is the difference? If God Himself gave life to a human being and then allowed that life to end without hope, simply because that individual lived in ignorance - this seems infinitely worse to me. Because the LORD could resurrect these millions, and then allow them to continue their lives, to hear the truth about Himself, and then to enter into (or reject) an informed personal covenant relationship with Himself.
I have heard the question asked quite often. Why was not this 8th day resurrection of the ignorant masses - with its invitation to eternal life - spelled out more clearly in the Scriptures? I agree. This plan of God was NOT spelled out clearly in the Scripture - but for good reason. The LORD did not want it known until very near the end of this age. His command to “go and teach” all nations, might have been subverted by this knowledge. Now - before the return of Christ, it is important that the character and righteous justice of the LORD be made known. The Scriptures are full of clues. We just did not “see” it - until the right time.
Our God is not unjust, and it is time that an explanation is given, concerning the LORD’s plan for those who have lived and died in ignorance or immaturity. Here I could include another list of the conclusions from each of the studies at this website, but the reader (that’s you) can easily pull up those pages. I would rather reflect upon the character of our God - His fairness, His justice, His love for each and every human being - and how that character is revealed in His plan.
“Father forgive them. They know not what they do.” These words were gasped out by a dying Savior. His prayer encompasses the whole of humanity. Is the Father not to honor this prayer? But how? How is He to forgive those who died in ignorance? They must be raised to life if they are to recognize their lost condition, to learn of a Savior, to confess their sins and to ask for forgiveness. When? When will they be raised to continue their lives? The only time frame which agrees with Scripture and prophecy is The 8th Day.
I will end with a story.
Two young men, both aged 17, go out hunting on the African plain. They are best friends, having grown up together in the same small village. They are captured by Arab slave traders, marched to the coast in chains, and then loaded onto a ship bound for South Carolina. During the voyage, one of the boys becomes very ill. As he dies in the arms of his friend, the surviving young man whispers, “I will never forget you my friend.”
Upon reaching Charleston, the survivor is put on the auction block and sold as a slave. But this young man is bought by an abolitionist, who educates him in basic English, frees him and then sends him to school in England. This young man is told the story of Christ, and learns to read the Bible. Given his freedom, this man becomes a minister of the gospel. He spends the rest of his 82 years sharing the good news of salvation with slaves and former slaves. When Christ returns and this man is raised to eternal life, what will be one of the first questions he will ask upon arriving in the Father’s House? ------- “What about my friend? I want to tell Him about Jesus. I want to tell all of them.” His guardian angel will answer with a smile, “You will see him again, because Jesus wants that too.”
A SUMMARY OF THE PLAN
This list is a short summary of the concepts explained in my book “The 8th Day”.
“But, beloved, do not forget this one thing,
that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years,
and a thousand years as one day (2Peter 3:8).
1. The ancient Sanctuary (later the Temple), its sacrifices, ceremonies and appointed feasts were acted prophecy. They were the LORD’s revelation of His plan for the reconciliation of mankind. Israel was chosen for this purpose.
2. Death is an unconscious sleep. The spirit essence of each person is retained by God. He will use this “memory” of the individual to resurrect each one.
3. The concept of “Hell” as a place of continuing conscious torment is NOT supported by the Scriptures.
4. At the Second Coming there will be a resurrection. Both the redeemed and the stubbornly rebellious will be raised to life on that day. The redeemed will be raised to eternal life, and the wicked will be raised to face judgment and death (without any possibility of resurrection).
5. The ignorant will NOT be raised on that day. They will continue to sleep in death until a thousand years have passed (Rev. 20:5).
6. The trumpet judgments and the seven last plagues will completely wipe out all life on planet earth. No one will survive the plagues. The earth will rest in desolation, completely devoid of life, until it is possible for the redeemed to return and rebuild.
7. Every person who enters into covenant with God thru Christ IS an Israelite - grafted in (Eph. 2, Ro. 11). The Israel of faith includes the redeemed from every nation, kindred and tongue.
8. All those who believe in Jesus (the root which nourishes) are “graft in” to the Olive Tree. That tree is Israel.
Israel was called to be a “kingdom of priests” (Exo. 19:5-6). This calling is continued in this New Testament era (1 Pet. 2:5,9,10). God’s word will be accomplished. Israel redeemed will indeed be a “kingdom of priests” who will govern and teach “the nations” who will be resurrected at the 8th millennium. The priests were mediators. There is no need for a priesthood, if there is no one to teach. According to the prophetic plan, priests cannot serve until their consecration is complete - at The 8th Day.
9. Messiah CANNOT reign over “the nations” during the 7th millennium. They will not be resurrected until the 8th millennium. The priests are not yet consecrated (prepared).
10. One’s name is entered into the “Book of Life” when one enters into covenant with God thru Christ. It will be blotted out of that book by Christ Himself, if one has forsaken covenant without repentance.
11. Israel redeemed will be returned to “the land.” They will restore and rebuild. They will rebuild The City where Christ will reign from David’s throne.
12. The House of the LORD will be restored, and a healing river will flow out from this Temple, bringing the earth back to life. This great resurrection will include the nations of those who lived and died in ignorance or immaturity. They will be raised, then taught by the “priests of God and of Christ”. Many will choose to serve the LORD. These will enter The City, and will be given immortal spiritual bodies.
13. At His return in glory, Christ will banish Satan to the “pit” for 1000 years. After this, Satan will be “released” to deceive “the nations in the four corners of the earth.” Who are these nations? If only the redeemed remain on the earth, there would be no reason to release the Evil One. The fact that Satan is released at the 8th millennium tells us that the contest for souls is not finished. It tells us that there are undecided human beings living on the earth during The 8th Day.
14. Outside The City, those stubbornly bent on rebellion will come up to overthrow the reign of Christ. They will be lead by a war chief named Gog. This is the Battle of Gog and Magog. The attacking rebels along with all of those outside the city, will be destroyed by divine fire from God out of heaven. The lost will then be physically dead - but their spirit essence still retained by God the Father.
15. Finally there will be a judgment - a review of the records concerning every one who is lost (physically dead - the name blotted out of the Book of Life). This review is not for God - He knows the heart. This review is for the redeemed people of God. They must be fully convinced that everything divinely possible was done to save each individual.
Once the records are reviewed, and the redeemed give their assent - the (unconscious) essential spirit essence of these stubbornly rebellious people will be destroyed in the “lake of fire.” After this event - they can never be resurrected again forever, because nothing of them will exist. Death and the abode of the dead (containing the spirit essence of each lost person) will have been consumed.
16. When the earth is finally cleansed of evil, Christ will present this kingdom - restored at last - to His Father (1Cor. 15:24-28). Just as in the ancient prophecy types - the offering will become acceptable on The 8th Day. The Holy City New Jerusalem will then descend from Heaven to earth. Earth and Heaven will then be “one.”
17. This earth will become the home of the redeemed for all eternity.
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