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Because He Loves Us
Compiled 2012 by Rachel Cory-Kuehl
Edited December 12, 2022
Scripture is from the NKJV unless otherwise noted.
God wanted a family. He created sentient, intelligent, free-will beings who could appreciate His gift of life. He provided everything necessarily for continued mental and physical health. Yet some did not receive His gifts with happiness. They wanted more.
The LORD knew that this desire for more would become a cancer that would eat away the happiness of His entire family, but He did not destroy the complainers. He must allow His entire family to hear all the arguments, and to experience the pain that would result from the desire for those things which the LORD had not given. Selfishness, violence, disease, domination of the weak and most importantly, separation from God Himself - the Source of continued life force.
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 about those who were ignorant of the LORD and of His law? What about the 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 transport them into glory without choice, also seems unjust. 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 will manipulate minds, then why didn’t He just exercise that power in the first place, in Eden - and skip this whole mess!
You can see why God’s creation of man - as mortal - was the perfect design. With the first death an unconscious suspended animation (a “sleep”) there is no need to send conscious spirits anywhere.
Continuing in this vein, if the LORD has retained the essence (the mind or memory - the spirit) of each person, what will He do with those who died in ignorance?
Paul clearly said that unbelievers are “separated from Christ,” and are “strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world”(Eph 2:12). Don’t tell me that all are born “saved,” or that Christ’s death saved everyone. No! His death made salvation possible for every human being, but the offered pardon must be accepted individually and personally, like a proposal of marriage. Paul says we are “betrothed” to Christ Jesus, those of us who believe in Him.
Will the LORD simply retain the spirit essence of the unsaved forever, in suspended animation? He loves each one, and greatly desires a relationship with any who are willing. How could He effectively end their lives without giving them an opportunity to hear, and 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 that “fits” with the Scriptures is The 8th Day.
Some have suggested that God 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!
I have heard the question asked quite often. Why was not this 8th day resurrection of children and the ignorant masses, spelled out more clearly in the Scriptures? Answer: His plan was prophesied. It is there. It just takes some study to “see” it. Some knowledge of the ancient commands and feasts, helps a lot. And His Spirit, of course.
I personally believe our LORD did not want The 8th Day clearly understood until very near the end of this age. Knowing the ignorant can hear the Gospel at the 8th millennium, might have dampened the enthusiasm of missionaries to “go and teach” all nations. Jesus did not tell his disciples that He would not return for another 2000 years, for the same reason. Now - as we approach the end of this age, it is important that the character and righteous justice of the LORD be made known. The Scriptures are full of clues, and even actual descriptions. We just did not “see” it - until the time was right.
Our God is just, 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.
I could include a 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 on the character of our God - His fairness, His justice, His patience, His infinite love for each and every human being - and how His character is revealed in His plan.
“Father forgive them. They know not what they do.” These words were gasped out by our dying Savior. His prayer encompasses the whole of ignorant humanity. Is the Father not to honor this prayer? But how? How is He to forgive those who died in ignorance? Answer: They must be raised to continued life, if they are to recognize their lost condition, to learn of a Savior, to confess their sins and to ask for forgiveness. When will they be raised? 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, from 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.”
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 hears the story of Christ, and learns to read the Bible. Given his freedom, he 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.”
We pray you have been blessed by the studies on The 8th Day.