Meaning of Life Part 9
From Hades to the side of the Ancient of Days, this is the trip Jesus made when on a cloud He rode out of His temptation. Luke 22:28 What a time of ecstasy for Him who had ‘endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself’. Abraham’s bosom, the name given the Paradise of the Hadean World, had been the place Christ had promised the ‘thief of the cross’ a reunion. “Today shalt thou be with Me in Paradise” tells more in this declaration. All of the modern philosophers think Jesus meant “today shalt thou be with Me in Heaven”, and so they read this statement, but Christ had “not yet ascended to His Father”, John 20:17, therefore, Heaven, the place which is also called Paradise was not the destination of Christ and the thief that day!!
Hades is a ‘life of waiting souls’. It is clear they are conscious of their situation, have vivid remembrance and feelings about those whom they have left behind. Some are in pain, some in comfort. Lazarus and Dives were actively alive, each feeling, each knowing. Dives was keenly aware of his misery while Lazarus was clearly conscious of comfort. Luke 16:19-31 In this in-between-world men are living in a state of life as conscious and vivid as those of us who are alive on the atmospheric part of this earth; death does not break continued consciousness; there is no break, the soul and spirit continue in conscious existence.
While here, Christ had said: “God is not the God of the dead, but of the living”. Matthew 22:31-32, Mark 12:26-27. The apostle Paul, when telling of his “out-of-the-body-experience” testified he did not know whether he was “in the body or out of the body”. John, in receiving the book of Revelation, knew he was “in the spirit”. Both knew they knew; they were not unconscious. The intermediate state of man is not a Rip van Winkle sleep we all take waiting to suddenly awake at the Judgment-in a moment- as if no interval of time had lapsed in between. We do not go unconscious at death and suddenly awake at the sounding of the last Trump. Enoch’s translation, Hebrews 11: 5, Moses and Elijah’s appearance on the mount of Transfiguration, Matthew 17:4, the seat beside Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Matthew 8:11, John in the spirit, Revelation 4:2, Lazarus and Dives, Luke 16, and Paul in Paradise, 2 Corinthians 12, and the consciousness of the damned of 2 Peter 2:4 all testify to the conscious existence of a life beyond the pale of existence, here! Death provides no chasm of consciousness.
The Hadean world is a place of clear memory, unclouded by the events of our every-day activities. “Son, remember” were the words that rang out off the walls of that World that no longer can be communicated by the damned. What was it like for men like Abraham to be in a world with those who had rejected the God Abraham had served while on the earth? Sure, they could tell there was a difference, but was that all the righteous were to receive for service to the God they had served? How could that joy of being better off for having served God not have been dulled being separated from the unrighteous by only a great gulf? Did it make some cry out in despair or did they always know Christ was coming to redeem them from the domain of Satan? Memory is something MORE than impressions on the gray matter of the brain- memory is in man, the “I”, himself, who is behind the brain and directs it, and therefore MUST go on with him when-ever and where-ever the “I” goes!! “In thy lifetime, thou hadst good things and Lazarus evil”. Active memory will be as much a part of eternal Hell as temporary, it is far better to “try and fail to succeed, than to fail for never trying at all”!!
Running from God, here, will only make the torture of Hell worse!!