Many Christians have strange and wrong beliefs about the resurrection (when God will cause dead people to live again). For example, some Christians believe in heaven; but they do not believe that there will be any resurrection. Other Christians do not believe that they will even enter heaven until after the resurrection. Actually, those two different beliefs are very similar: both groups think that only their spirits, and not their bodies will live again. In 1 Corinthians chapter 15, Paul taught clearly that such ideas are wrong.
In Mark 12:24, Jesus explained the causes of wrong ideas like these. People do not know the Bible, and they do not recognise the power of God.
The first leaders of the Christian church considered the resurrection to be one of the most important Christian beliefs (Hebrews 6:2). They taught that Godís people have always believed in the resurrection (Hebrews 11:19). Those people did not expect God to carry out all his promises to them in this life. They believed that he would do it in the future, after the resurrection (Hebrews 11:13-16; compare Job 19:25-27). With that belief, the first Christians also lived and died (2:10-11).
Ecclesiastes 12:7 explains the correct Christian belief about death. At death, the human body returns to the earth. However, the personís spirit returns to God, who is the judge of all people (Ecclesiastes 12:14). Immediately on death, the spirits of Godís people enter heaven (Luke 23:42-43), where those people are living and active (7:9-12). At the time of Christís return, their bodies will also live again with a new kind of life (1 Corinthians 15:35-57). When Christ establishes his rule on earth, they will live and rule with him (20:4-6).
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© 2016, Keith Simons.