Is Elijah In Heaven?
Parts 1 through 6
By Willie Martin

Jew Watch

 Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 1

 Is Elijah In Heaven? As the Judeo-Christian preachers teach.

 Why did Yeashua say: "...No man hath ascended up to heaven, but he [Christ] that came down from heaven, even the son of man which is [Now; John's day, And currently, In our day] in heaven." (John 3:13)

 Then we have the testimony of Paul in Hebrews 9:27: "...It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment."

 Yeashua, who had come from Heaven, and who appeared in a human flesh body, said, plainly, that NO MAN; Not Elijah, Not Enoch, Not ANY man; was in Heaven. Yet the Bible says: "...and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven." (2 Kings 2:11)

 Is this a "contradiction?" It certainly appears to be so! Surely Yeashua did not tell an "untruth!" Yet He plainly contradicts what (2 Kings 2:11) SEEMS to say! Where did Elijah go? What did Yeashua mean? The prophet Elisha, who had followed Elijah doggedly, claiming he would never desist from following him, was absolutely "Shocked." For while Elisha was asking for a "double portion" of the spirit of Elijah.

 "...it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that behold, THERE APPEARED a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven." (2 Kings 2:11) Elisha SAW this happen with his own eyes!

 Down through the centuries thousands of impassioned sermons have been preached using this verse to underscore the "HOPES OF HEAVEN" for the saved! Who has not heard preacher after preacher, pastor after pastor, the Clergy of Organized Religion; wax eloquently about the proverbial "pearly gates," the heavenly city with streets of gold and glittering mansions; about being in Heaven, forever and ever? Millions believe that IMMEDIATELY UPON DEATH the "Souls" of Christians "GO TO HEAVEN!" Without ever asking the question: "If this is so, the WHY IS THERE A RESURRECTION?"

 So, this presents yet, another question: Why did Yeashua say that Elijah [And Christians for that matter] had not? Why did He say, "...No man hath ascended up to heaven?" After all, He had BEEN THERE, with the Father, and the 24 elders, and all the angels. He had just come from heaven to this earth, had He not? And he certainly knew whether Elijah or any other man had bone there or not. HE SHOULD HAVE KNOWN, shouldn't He? HE HAD BEEN THERE, with the Father, and the 24 elders, and all the angels.

 WHY DO literally MILLIONS of church-going, professing Christians believe Yeashua didn't know what He was talking about; or that He lied? Do "YOU" believe Christ? Or do you prefer to believe, instead, WHAT YOU HAVE ALWAYS BEEN TAUGHT BY MEN?

What Happened to Elijah?

 Did Elijah DIE and go to heaven? No! Elijah was not even ill; he was still doing the WORK which Yahweh had set before him and was merely TALKING with Elisha, walking along engaged in conversation. When SUDDENLY Elisha saw what appeared to be a FIERY VISION, and Elijah was TAKEN, BODILY, up into "heaven." No doubt Elisha watched him UNTIL HE WAS TAKEN OUT OF SIGHT!

 Where did Elijah go? If it was a bright, clear day, HOW LONG could Elisha's eyes have followed Elijah as he departed? Probably, if Elisha had normally good eyesight, he could have seen Elijah, plus the blazing, glittering spectacle of the fiery chariot and horses, for several miles, perhaps even as much as 15,000 or 20,000 feet. But, eventually, DISTANCE would have seemed to "swallow Elijah up," and he would have no longer been VISIBLE to Elisha's startled eyes!

 How many times have you had the experience of hearing the muted thunder of a jet airplane from very high overhead, only to look up into the sky and be unable to see the aircraft? Perhaps you remember an occasion or two when you have been able to see the vapor trail left by the engines of the aircraft, and perhaps could even see it forming, moving across the sky high above, and still the airplane was so high your human eye could not pick it out.

 Yet aboard that airplane could be more than 100 people; flight attendants serving meals, pushing carts up and down the aisle, the flight crew at their places in the cockpit, an airplane so big that a 6-foot man could stand up in the intake of only one of its big jet engines, and yet, because it is so high in the sky, you cannot see it! Now if it were a cloudy day when Elijah was "taken up into heaven," then Elisha could only see him for a few hundred, or a few thousand feet.

 However, actually, Elijah was only taken up into the air. The word for "heaven" is "shameh" (pronounced "shaw-meh" and is #8064: Strong's Exhaustive Concordance) in the Hebrew language, which comes from a root word meaning "to be lofty." The word means "the sky" (as "aloft") and alludes to "the visible arch in which the clouds move, as well as to the higher either where the celestial bodies revolve." The word means "AIR" as well as "heaven"

 One or two examples of the interchangeable usage of this ONE WORD should suffice, although there are MANY such in the Bible. Notice! "And the windows of "heaven" were opened..." (Genesis 7:11); "The windows of "heaven" were stopped and the "rain" from "heaven" was restrained..." (Genesis 8:2); "...Whose top may "reach unto heaven..." (Genesis 11:4)

 These are only three examples of literally DOZENS in the Old Testament where the word "heaven" is OBVIOUSLY referring to this earth's "IMMEDIATE ATMOSPHERE." In the first few quotations, reference is made to the FLOOD of Noah.

 The "windows of heaven" refer to thunderous RAINSTORMS, and are therefore dealing with the immediate ENVELOPE OF AIR which covers this earth like a mantle and is, in fact, a literal PART of our earth and its immediate environment.

 The Scripture from Genesis 11 deals with the famed "Tower of Babel," when mankind attempted to construct the very first "skyscraper." Now, notice how the IDENTICAL WORD (shameh) is used for the word "AIR." "The fowl of the AIR..." (Genesis 1:26, 28); "...and every fowl of the AIR..." (Genesis 2:19); "...gave names...to the fowl of the AIR..." (Genesis 2:20); "...winged fowl that flyeth in the AIR..." (Deuteronomy 4:17); "The birds of the AIR rest on them..." (2 Samuel 2:10); "The way of an eagle in the AIR..." (Proverbs 30:19)

 In EACH of these, and in 21 separate examples in the Old Testament, the IDENTICAL HEBREW WORD translated "heaven" (2 Kings 2:11) is rendered "AIR." Why? Because the translators KNEW that, when the Bible was referring to that "firmament" above the earth in which BIRDS FLY, it MUST MEAN "THE AIR," and not THE HEAVEN OF Yahweh'S THRONE.

 Actually, as we shall see, the Bible clearly speaks of THREE "heavens," but it does not positively identify the "third heaven" as the heaven of Yahweh's throne! "I knew a man in Christ above fourteen years ago, (whether in the body, I cannot tell; or whether out of the body, I cannot tell: Yahweh knoweth;) such an one caught up to THE THIRD HEAVEN." (2 Corinthians 12:2)

 What Elisha saw, then, was the DISAPPEARANCE of Elijah, by a miracle from Yahweh, in a fiery chariot; up into the AIR, until he was taken up out of Elisha's sight! ELIJAH DID NOT GO INTO THE  "HEAVEN OF? GOD'S THRONE." For Yeashua of Nazareth SAID SO!

Which Heaven is Being Spoken of In This Story About Elijah?

 Let me repeat what Yeashua says in Matthew Chapter Seven: "Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? AND THEN WILL I [Christ] PROFESS UNTO THEM, I NEVER KNEW YOU: DEPART FROM ME, YE THAT WORK INIQUITY." (Matthew 7:21-23)

 Perhaps we should pause here long enough to clarify Just which "Heaven" is being spoken of here. For we know by the Scriptures that there is more than one. "And God called the firmament Heaven." (Genesis 1:8)

 Then Yahweh created other Heavens: "Thus the heaven(s) and the earth were finished, and all the host [MANY] of THEM." (Genesis 2:1)

Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 2

 For a true understanding of the New Testament, it is essential that the "Word of Truth" should be "rightly divided" (2 Tim. 2:15) as to the various usages of the word "kingdom" in all the different combinations and contexts in which we find it. Each has its own peculiar and particular sense, which must not be confused with another.

 As to the word "basileia," it denotes "sovereignty," which requires the actual presence of a sovereign, or king. There can be no kingdom apart from a king. We all know of countries which were once "kingdoms" but are now "republics," for the simple but sufficient reason that they have no "king," but are supposedly governed by the "public," which is sovereign. The countries remain the same, have the same peoples, the same cities, the same mountains and rivers, but they are no longer kingdoms.

 The common practice of taking the Kingdom as meaning the Church, has been the source of incalculable misunderstanding; and not "trying the things that differ" (Phil. 1:10) has led to much confusion in the interpretation of the whole of the New Testament.

 The following definitions may help you to more clearly understand many important passages:

 1. "THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN." The word "heaven" is generally in this connection in the plural, "of (or from) the heavens." For the difference between the use of the singular and plural of this word. This expression is used ONLY in the Gospel of Matthew, as being specially in harmony with the purpose of that Gospel.

 It is the dispensational term; and is used sometimes of Messiah's Kingdom on earth, and sometimes of the heavenly sovereignty over the earth. It is not from or out of "this world." This sovereignty comes from heaven, because the King is to come from thence (John 18:36). It was to this end He was born, and this was the first subject of His ministry.

 That Kingdom (Matthew 4:17) was rejected, as was also the further proclamation of it in (Acts 3:19-26) [According to the prophetic parable of (Matthew 22:2-7)]. Therefore the earthly realization of this Kingdom was postponed, and is now in abeyance until the King shall be sent from heaven (Acts 3:20). The "secrets" of this Kingdom (Matthew 13: 11) pertained to the postponement of its earthy realization, on account of its being rejected.

 2. "THE KINGDOM OF GOD." Is the sovereignty of Yahweh, which is moral and universal. It existed from the beginning, and will know no end. It is over all, and embraces all.

 3. "THE KINGDOM OF THE FATHER." (Matthew 13:43) is not universal, but has regard to relationship, and to "a heavenly calling" (Hebrews 3:1), and to the heavenly sphere of the Kingdom, in its relation to the earthy. It is sovereignty exercised toward obedient sons, when the Son of man shall have gathered out of His Kingdom "all things that offend" (Matt. 13:41; See also Daniel 7:25-27; Matthew 25:31-46; Luke 20:34-36). The way of entrance into this may be seen in (John 3:3). It is going on now concurrently with "THE KINGDOM OF HIS DEAR SON."

 4. "THE KINGDOM OF THE SON OF MAN." (Matthew 16:28). This aspect of "the Kingdom of heaven" has regard to Israel on earth (Daniel 7:13-22), as distinct from the "sons" who, as partakers of "a heavenly calling" (Hebrew 3:1), will possess the heavenly sphere as sons of the resurrection (Luke 20:34-36; 1 Cor. 15:23; Rev. 20:4-6).

 These two spheres are distinct, though they are one. "THE KINGDOM OF THE FATHER" concerns "the saints of the most high [places]" (Daniel 7:18-24). "THE KINGDOM OF THE SON OF MAN" concerns "the people of the saints of the most high." these have their portion in "the Kingdom under the whole heaven," which has regard to earthly sovereignty, in which "all dominions shall serve and obey Him" (Daniel 7:27).

 5. "THE KINGDOM OF HIS DEAR SON." Generally the Kingdom of the Son of His love, or of His beloved son (Col. 1: 13), has regard to quite another sphere, above all heavens, and refers to the sovereignty of Yahweh's beloved Son is made the "Head over all things to His people, which is His body, the fulness of Him that filleth all in all" (Eph. 1:10, 20-23; See also Eph. 5:5).

 This sovereignty had been "kept secret" (Romans 16:25), "hid in God" (Eph. 3:9), "hid from ages and from generations" (Col. 1:26); but after "THE KINGDOM OF THE SON OF MAN" proclaimed by the Lord and by "them that heard Him" (Hebrews 2:4) had been postponed, it was revealed and "made known" (Eph. 3) for the "obedience of faith" (Romans 16:26). The subjects of this Divine sovereignty, on (or designated) for their inheritance, which is to be enjoyed with Christ (Eph. 1:13).

 6. "THE EVERLASTING KINGDOM OF OUR LORD AND SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST." (2 Peter 1:11). This has regard to "THE KINGDOM OF HIS DEAR SON," but was then future [not having been revealed when Peter wrote]; but it relates to the outward display of His sovereignty in millennial glory; while it relates to the inward position and experimental enjoyment of it in the present grace.

 7. "THE KINGDOM OF OUR LORD AND OF HIS CHRIST" (or Messiah). (Rev. 11:15). This has regard to the end of the present time of abeyance of "THE KINGDOM OF THE FATHER" and "THE KINGDOM OF THE SON OF MAN," and the millennial manifestation of both by Divine power, and in glory. (See Rev. 19:10). Now, we have seen that the word "kingdom," like the Greek "basileia," has regard to sovereignty rather than territory, and to the sphere of its exercise rather than to its extent.

 Using the word "kingdom" in this sense, and in that which is conveyed in its English termination "dom," which is short for dominion, we note that the former expression, "the Kingdom of heaven," occurs only in Matthew, where we find it thirty-two times. Whereas "the Kingdom of God" occurs only five times (Matt. 6:33; 12:28; 19:24; 21:31, 43).

 But in the parallel passages in the other Gospels we find, instead, the expression "the Kingdom of God" (Matthew 11:11 with Luke 7:28). The explanation of this seeming difference is that the Lord spoke in Aramatic; certainly not in the Greek of the Gospel documents.

 Now "heaven" is frequently used by the Figure Metonymy [of the Subject], for Yahweh Himself, Whose dwelling is there. (See Ps. 73:9; Dan. 4:26-29; 2 Chr. 32:20; Matt. 21:25; and Luke 15: 21 ["I have sinned against heaven" is thus contrasted with the words "and in thy sight"] (John 3:27).

 So it would appear that in all the passages where the respective expressions occur, identical words were spoken by the Lord, "the Kingdom of heaven;" but when it came to putting them into Greek, Matthew was Divinely guided to retain the figure of speech literally ("heaven"), so as to be in keeping with the special character, design, and scope of his Gospel; while, in the other Gospels, the figure was translated as being what it also meant, "the Kingdom of God."

 Thus, while the same in a general sense, the two expressions are to be distinguished in their meaning and in their interpretations, as follows:

I. The Kingdom (or Sovereignty) of Heaven.

1. Has Yeashua for its King,
2. It is FROM HEAVEN; and under the heavens UPON THE EARTH and was formed at Mt. Sinai,
3. It is LIMITED in its scope,
4. It is POLITICAL in its sphere,
5. It is REGATHERED ISRAEL and EXCLUSIVE in its character,
6. It is NATIONAL in its aspect,
7. It is the SPECIAL SUBJECT of the Old Testament Prophecy,
8. It is ETERNAL in its duration.
II. The Kingdom (or Sovereignty) of Yahweh.
1. Has Yahweh for its King or Ruler,
2. It is in Heaven, OVER the earth,
3. It is UNLIMITED in its scope,
4. It is MORAL and SPIRITUAL in its sphere,
5. It is INCLUSIVE in its character.
6. It is UNIVERSAL in its aspect,
7. It is (in its widest aspect) the subject of New Testament REVELATION,
8. It is ETERNAL in its duration.


 Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 3

Do "Souls" Go to Heaven?

 But, some will argue, Yeashua didn't say "NO SOULS" ascended into heaven! Still others will argue, "...it isn't the MAN who goes to heaven; it is the "SOUL" of the man!" But wait! Elijah DID NOT DIE. Elijah didn't even have a headache; he was not ill, or anywhere near death!

 Where is Your "Soul" After Death?

 A common teaching among the Protestant and Catholic Churches about the "soul" of man is that it leaves the body at death and goes either to heaven, if the person is "saved," or to hell, where the "unsaved" are tormented for eternity. Although there is less "hell-fire" preaching today than in the past, the priests and preachers still insist, when pressed that "hell" is a place where unsaved "souls" suffer fire and torture for ever and ever, an eternity of indescribable pain without end.

 Many people have rejected this idea of a torturing "hell." Some just ignore it and desire not to discuss it, although they accept the other side of the coin, i.e., the "soul" of the believer going to heaven for eternity if he has "confessed belief in Jesus Christ" while still alive.

 Others, in rejecting this teaching of hell, reject the entire Christian religion, saying they cannot trust a Yahweh who will torture billions and billions of people forever just because those people, while alive, did not know or did not "confess" Him.

 So let us examine this "hell," and search the Scripture to find the Bible Truth on: Where is your Soul after death?

 Sheol

 The English word "hell" ("sheowl" or "sheol" #7585; grave, hell or pit; Strong's Exhaustive Concordance Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary). appears 31 times in the Old Testament, and every time it  comes from the Hebrew "shoel," but "sheol" is also translated "grave" 31 times, and "pit" 3 times. To fully understand what the Bible "hell" is, we must understand what is meant by the Hebrew word "sheol."

 The King James translators of over 400 years ago obviously felt both hell and grave carried the full meaning of "sheol." This is true when we realize from old English sources that the Anglo-Saxon "helan" or "hell" meant "to cover" or "to hide out of sight." When ancient farmers and some modern ones put potatoes or other root crops in an underground cellars to prevent winter freezing, they called it "helling them," i.e., putting them into the ground and covering them up. Putting a roof on a new house was also called "helling." It was entirely natural for the translators to use either hell or grave for "sheol" SINCE BOTH WORDS MEANT THE SAME THING! "Hell" is very simply the "grave!"

 Reading Scripture where the word "sheol" was used will prove it means "grave." Jacob expected to go to "sheol" when he died. "And all his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him: but he refused to be comforted; and he said, For I will go down into the GRAVE [Sheol] unto my son mourning. Thus his father wept for him." (Genesis 37:35); "And he said, My son shall not go down with you; for his brother is dead, and he is left alone: if mischief befall him by the way in the which ye go, then shall ye bring down my gray hairs with sorrow to the GRAVE [Sheol]." (Genesis 42:38)

 Job, in his sorrow, wished that he had died at birth and gone to "sheol." "Why died I not from the womb? why did I not give up the ghost when I came out of the belly? Why did the knees prevent me? or why the breasts that I should suck?...There the wicked cease from troubling; and there the weary be at rest...they hear not the voice of the oppressor...Which rejoice exceedingly, and are glad, when they can find the GRAVE [Sheol]." (Job 3:11-22)

 In those same verses he describes it as a place where "the wicked cease from troubling; and there the weary be at rest...they hear not the voice of the oppressor."  THIS IS HARDLY THE DESCRIPTION OF A PLACE OF SCREAMS AND TORTURE AND FIRE! Ecclesiastes 9:10 tells us: "...there is no work, nor device, NOR KNOWLEDGE, nor wisdom, in the GRAVE [Sheol], whither thou goest." And that: "For the living know that they shall die: BUT THE DEAD KNOW NOT ANYTHING..." (Ecc. 9:5); Psalm 6:5 says; "For in death there is no remembrance of thee: in the GRAVE [Sheol] who shall give thee thanks?" This is similar to Psalm 115:17; "THE DEAD PRAISE NOT THE LORD, NEITHER ANY THAT GO DOWN INTO SILENCE." "Sheol" is translated "grave eight times in the Psalms (6:5; 30:3; 31:17; 49:14-15; 88:3-5; and 89:48)

Gehenna

 In the New Testament the Greek word "gehenna" [#1067 Strong's Exhaustive Concordance Greek Dictionary of the New Testament] is translated "hell" 11 times. It is the name of the burning dump out side of Jerusalem where refuse and DEAD BODIES OF CRIMINALS WERE BURNED. Christ and the others used it as a demonstration of destruction, NOT TORTURE! Sinners were NOT TORTURED THERE; they had already been put to death for their crime, and then their dead bodies were burned in the dump, because it was thought they had lost any right to be buried in a regular grave. It was all over in a few minutes and CERTAINLY CANNOT BE COMPARED TO BEING BURNED ALIVE IN A CONSCIOUS STATE FOREVER.

 Advocates of a tortured existence in a burning hell often use the Sermon on the Mount to "prove" their theology (Matthew 5). Christ does warn of the "danger of hell fire" and of being cast "into hell" in verses 22, 29 and 30. In each case it is the word "gehenna." Reading the context, it is easy to see He was telling His listeners not to sin, for if they did, they would be in danger of being cast into "gehenna," i.e., BEING PUT TO DEATH AS A SINNER! And their bodies being cast into the dump or "PIT," where it would be BURNED IN THE FIRE! This is the SAME exhortation we read from Peter; "For it is better...that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing." (1 Peter 3:17); "But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer..." (1 Peter 4:15) In very simple words, Christians are not to sin and end up as criminals.

 Hades

 The Greek word "hades" (#86: grave or hell, Strong's Exhaustive Concordance Greek Dictionary) is translated "hell" 10 times in the New Testament. In Acts 2, Peter quotes Old Scripture of Christ, that Yahweh would not leave His "soul in hell [hades]," and therefore, "his soul was not left in hell [hades]" verses 27 and 31).

 The entire story of Christ overcoming death tells us He died and was put in the grave but did not remain there, but was resurrected. Yet priests and ministers would have us believe that "hades" is a place filled with billions of "souls" in horrible torment which will go on for eternity. Some even tell of Christ going to this place of hellish sights and sounds and releasing the prisoners there and taking some to heaven with Him, and all sorts of weird IMAGINED THINGS WHICH HAVE NO BASIS IN SCRIPTURE WHATEVER!

 In Rev. 20:13 we read of the day of resurrection, "And the sea gave up the dead which were in it [These dead are still there; They are NOT GONE SOME WHERE ELSE]; and death and hell [hades] delivered up the dead which WERE IN THEM."

 The margin in most Bibles has a note for "hell" there, saying, "or, the grave." The truth is in the Bible; WHY DO PEOPLE REFUSE TO SEE THE TRUTH?
 


 Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 4

 Molech

 Yahweh's own Law prohibits the torture of men in fire. Israel was ordered not to do so in Lev. 18:21 and 20:1-5; "And THOU SHALT NOT LET any of THY SEED PASS THROUGH THE FIRE to Molech..."; "And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, THAT GIVETH ANY OF HIS SEED UNTO MOLECH; HE SHALL SURELY BE PUT TO DEATH: the people of the land shall stone him with stones. And I will set my face against that man, and will cut him off from among his people; because HE HATH GIVEN OF HIS SEED UNTO MOLECH, to defile my sanctuary, and to profane my holy name. And if the people of the land do any ways hide their eyes from the man, when he GIVETH OF HIS SEED UNTO MOLECH, AND KILL HIM NOT: Then I WILL SET MY FACE AGAINST THAT MAN, and against his family, AND WILL CUT HIM OFF, and all that go a whoring after him, TO COMMIT WHOREDOM WITH MOLECH, FROM AMONG THEIR PEOPLE."

 Then Yahweh says that such a thing never came into His mind: "They have built also the high places of Baal, TO BURN THEIR SONS WITH FIRE FOR BURNT OFFERINGS unto Baal, I COMMANDED NOT, NOR SPAKE IT, NEITHER CAME IT INTO MY MIND." (Jeremiah 19:5)

 In Jeremiah 32:35 He says burning their sons and daughters in "THE FIRE OF MOLECH" was an "abomination" and caused Judah "TO SIN."; "And they built the high place of Baal, which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, TO CAUSE THEIR SONS AND THEIR DAUGHTERS TO PASS THROUGH THE FIRE UNTO MOLECH; WHICH I COMMANDED THEM NOT, NEITHER CAME IT INTO MY MIND, THAT THEY SHOULD DO THIS ABOMINATION, TO CAUSE JUDAH TO SIN."

 These Scriptures and many other verses give the lie to the hell of the dark ages, which is taught by so many priests and ministers today. HELL IS NOT A PLACE OF ETERNAL TORTURE where the damned scream in pain for eternity; it is a place of silence, of rest, a place where its occupants know nothing, a place where righteous Job said he would remain until his Redeemer, "For I know that MY REDEEMER LIVETH, and that he SHALL STAND AT THE LATTER DAY UPON THE EARTH." (Job 19:25-27)

 Death

 When we understand the Scripture penalty for sin is simply "death" (Genesis 2:17; Ezekiel 18:4; Romans 6:23 and others), we realize there is no foundation for this idea that the penalty is "everlasting torture." Christ paid the full penalty for our sins, that we might not suffer; What? Everlasting [permanent] death, NOT EVERLASTING TORTURE! "Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and SIN, when it is finished, BRINGETH FORTH DEATH." (James 1:15)

 Christ: "For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, HOW THAT CHRIST DIED FOR OUR SINS according to the scriptures." (1 Corinthians 15:3) If the penalty were everlasting torture, would it not follow that Yeashua would have had to suffer everlasting torture to pay for our sins? Of course, it isn't, and He didn't. He paid the Scriptural penalty; DEATH, for: "...HE [Christ] IS THE PROPITIATION FOR OUR SINS: and not for our's only, but also for THE SINS OF THE WHOLE WORLD." (1 John 2:2)

 So we die once and then we are raised to everlasting life in the resurrection. Christ's death and resurrection set the pattern for all. And our resurrection is NOT a spirit resurrection AT OUR DEATH, but is a literal resurrection; "For as in Adam ALL DIE, even so IN CHRIST shall ALL BE MADE ALIVE. But EVERY MAN IN HIS OWN ORDER: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's AT HIS COMING." (1 Corinthians 15:22-23)

 The "everlasting punishment" of (Matthew 25:46) and the "everlasting destruction: of (2 Thessalonians 1:9) are very simply DEATH, for Yahweh's Law is "everlasting" (Genesis 9:16; Habakkuk 3:6). Notice in (Matthew 25:4) it is the fire which is everlasting, NOT THE PERSON'S TERM OF PUNISHMENT IN IT.

 Heaven

 In demolishing the "hell" of the Catholic and Protestant Churches by the Holy Light of the Bible, we find we have also exposed their false teaching that the "saved" dead go immediately to heaven when they die. Their condition is the same as the "unsaved" dead; Scripture makes no difference.

 That some people go immediately to heaven is an idea taken from pagan religions that the "spirit" of man lives on after death and never dies. Man, naturally, does not WISH to die, and this false doctrine gives him hope that he really will NOT die; just his physical body will die, but his real "self" will go right on living, now in heaven instead of on the earth. But peter said on the day of Pentecost that David "...is both dead and buried, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day...for David is NOT ascended into the heavens..." (Acts 2:29-34) This was AFTER Christ had ascended, and certainly if Peter had believed the "saved" dead were in heaven, he would have said that David was "now in heaven." But of course he was not; he was in the same place all the dead are; in the grave [hell]. They are referred to as "ASLEEP" in (2 Kings 21:17-18; John 11:11-14; 1 Thess. 4:13-17; Peter 3:4 and 1 Cor. 15:18).

 In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul wrote of the resurrection of the dead; "But if there be no resurrection of the dead...Then they also which are fallen ASLEEP in Christ are perished." (1 Corinthians 15:13-18)

 Where did Paul believe the "saved" dead were? Why, "FALLEN ASLEEP" in the grave, of course. WHERE HE SAID IF THERE WERE NO RESURRECTION, THEY ARE "PERISHED!" If the "saved" are all in heaven, as the evangelists preach, we would need no resurrection, and Paul was lying.

Why did our Lord Yeashua say of the resurrection day. "Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which ALL THAT ARE IN THE GRAVES SHALL HEAR HIS VOICE, And shall COME FORTH [from the grave]; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." (John 5:28-29)

 How can Yeashua call us from the grave, if the Catholics and Protestants are right that we will all be in heaven or in torment in hell? Which will you believe, doctrines of men, or Yahweh's Holy Word?

 The Soul

 But some may still say, "Well, alright, so the body remains in the grave, but what about my soul? Can't it go to heaven, without my body?" Well, let's find the Scriptural definition of the "soul."

 In the creation of Adam we read that Yahweh; "...breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a LIVING SOUL." (Genesis 2:7)

 Then for a second witness Paul said: "And so it is written, the first man Adam was made a LIVING SOUL..." (1 Corinthians 15:45)

 Adam was NOT GIVEN A SOUL; he BECAME a LIVING SOUL. The word "soul" comes from the Hebrew "nephesh," (#5315: Strong's Exhaustive Concordance) which means a breathing creature, animal, beast, body, breath, man, person, self, etc. It does NOT mean a conscious entity separate from the body, in spite of the false teachings to the contrary.

 What man received from Yahweh was "the breath of life," often referred to as the "spirit" in Scripture, from the Hebrew "ruach," (#7308: Which means mind, spirit or wind) or "neshamah," (#5397: Which means air, breath, wind, power, animation, etc.) or from the Greek "pneuma," (#4151). It means air, breath, wind, power, animation, etc.

 Animals also have this "breath of life," (Genesis 7:21-22) and it is the SAME as man's (Ecc. 3:19). It has no consciousness itself, but it is THE POWER THAT ENABLES THE PHYSICAL BODY AND MIND TO FUNCTION, to think, to act, i.e., to LIVE. The combination of the "breath of life," the spirit, with the physical body makes "a living soul," whether man, animal, or other. This is NOT the same as the HOLY SPIRIT; that is a different subject altogether.

 When the breath of life is taken from a man, he dies (Psalm 104:29-30; 146:4; Job 34:14-15), and the breath of life returns to Him who gave it (Ecc. 12:7). Being from Yahweh, this breath or spirit is indestructible, but THE SPIRIT IS NOT THE SOUL. It is NOT a conscious you. YOU DIE. YOU remain DEAD, until the power of Yeashua comes to RESURRECT you.

 That the soul is the living body which can die or be killed is made plain in numerous verses such as (Lev. 5:1-2; 7:20-27; Psalm 78:50 and Rev. 16:3). Psalm 89:48 says that man shall die and his "soul" goes to the grave [sheol]. "What man is he that liveth, and shall not see death? shall he deliver his SOUL from the hand of the GRAVE?"

 Look up "soul" in any good concordance and follow it through the Bible, and you will see it CANNOT mean a separate existence apart from the living body. Either "life" or "person" can usually be substituted for "soul," and the correct meaning will still be there. Try it and see how clear it becomes.
 

Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 5

Our Reward

 You may still ask, "But my minister is always telling me my reward is in heaven (Matthew 5:12). Don't I have to go to heaven to receive it?" It is there, all right, if your name is written "in the Book of Life" (Rev. 3:5; 20:12; Malachi 3:16), but if you have to go there to get it, WHY does Yeashua say? "...behold, I come quickly; and MY REWARD is with me, TO GIVE EVERY MAN ACCORDING AS HIS WORK SHALL BE." (Rev. 22:12)

 All the writers of Scripture contemplated a reward at the end of the age, AFTER their resurrection, NOT at their death!

 Some have misunderstood Paul to imply that he would be in the presence of Yeashua as soon as he died, but he knew the truth of death and the grave, that "the dead know not any thing." He knew that at the moment of resurrection it would be as if he had the previous moment "fallen asleep." The dead are not conscious of the passage of time, be it an hour or a thousand years!

 The Great Deceit

 So far you have seen from the meaning of the original words and verses that the doctrine of man's continuing, conscious existence after death is false. But there is a greater deception here than you perhaps might see upon casual examination.

 Turn to Genesis 3 and read the story of the serpent's deception of Eve, and then of Adam. Yahweh had told them NOT to eat of a certain tree "lest ye die." But the serpent said to Eve, "Ye shall NOT surely die...your eyes shall be opened, and YE SHALL BE AS GODS..." (Gen. 3:4-5)

 Yahweh's Word tells us today that all shall die and "the wages of sin is death," i.e., if you disobey, you shall die!

 But the False Judeo-Christian ministers today tell us that only the body dies, and that the real us will just "Go right to heaven and be with the Lord." What are they saying? They are saying that "Ye shall not surely die...but your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods [alive in heaven]!"

 If there is any teaching of the Catholic and Protestant Churches that creates an "I couldn't care less" attitude toward the condition of Yahweh's earth and its people, it is this false doctrine that is but the slightly  altered ORIGINAL DECEPTION OF OUR RACE! The Gospel of the Kingdom, the True Gospel of the Bible, teaches that men are to be resurrected "on the earth" (Job 19:25; 1 Cor. 15 etc.), and shall "reign on earth" (Rev. 5:10) with the Lord Jesus Christ (2 Tim. 2:12; Rev. 20:6), for: "The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord's: but the earth hath he given to the children of men." (Plasm 115:16)

 This "gospel" that we are all going to heaven as soon as we die is the very opposite of Bible truth. By deceiving men about the true nature of man and death, the FALSE AND TRAITOROUS MINISTERS KEEP MEN'S EYES ON A HEAVEN AND HELP THE ANTI-CHRISTS TAKE CONTROL OVER THE ENTIRE EARTH! The entirely human desire NOT to "surely die," but to go on living in some form, is exploited by them to lead men to believe a lie today, just as Adam and eve's desire NOT TO DIE, but to "be as gods," led them to be deceived in their day!

 The doctrine that man's "immortal soul" is in danger of eternal torment unless it is somehow "saved" for heaven by the priests, gives that priesthood, through fear, domination over those who have succumbed to the doctrine of immortality.

 Through hundreds and hundreds of years, we read of the successive, ruling dynasties of kings over these separate, individual nations until, finally, BOTH Israelite Kingdoms [The Northern "ten tribes" with their capital city at Samaria, and the Southern Tribes of Judah, Benjamin and portions of Levi, with their capital city at Jerusalem] were taken into captivity.

 Now that we have the historical setting firmly in mind, turn to and read Ezekiel's prophecy! "And I will set up one shepherd over them, and he shall feed them, even my servant David; he shall feed them, and he shall be their shepherd. And I the Lord will be their God, and my servant David a prince among them; I the Lord have spoken it." (Ezekiel 34:23-24)

 Here is a prophecy, given from Yahweh more than 120 years AFTER the ruling king of 10-tribed Israel WENT INTO CAPTIVITY, hundreds of years after David DIED, plainly saying that David will be RESURRECTED! He will be RAISED FROM THE DEAD to become a prince in the nation of Israel. Peter spoke of David's future resurrection, and of his PRESENT STATE, in his famous sermon on the Day of Pentecost. "Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he is both DEAD and BURIED, and his sepulchre is with us unto this day." (Acts 2:29)

 David is DEAD! He is utterly UNCONSCIOUS: UNAWARE of the passage of time; HE IS IN HIS GRAVE! Notice how the apostle Paul reaffirms this: "And what shall I more say? for the time would fail me to tell of Gedeon, and of Barak, and of Samson, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets." (Hebrews 11:32)

 Notice it carefully. Yahweh tells us TWICE in this famous "faith chapter" that David is DEAD. They have NOT "received the promise." What was the promise? It was the promise of ETERNAL LIFE; co-rulership with Christ. "And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received NOT THE PROMISE: Yahweh having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect." (Hebrews  11:39-40)

 WHY HAVE YOU NOT BEEN TOLD AND TAUGHT THE TRUTH about Elijah and David? It is because the ENEMIES OF CHRIST have brought damnable heresies and Jewish Fables into the seminaries, and is thus taught to the Baal Priests; the Clergy of Organized Religion, to deceive our people; making is more easy to conquer them. "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in DAMNABLE HERESIES, even denying the Lord that bought them... And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. and through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you..." (2 Peter 2:1); "Not giving heed to JEWISH FABLES, and COMMANDMENTS OF MEN [The Jewish Talmud], that turn from the truth [Do not understand? THE JEWS WILL TURN YOU FROM THE TRUTH UNTO A LIE]." (Titus 1:14)

 Peter said: "For David IS NOT ASCENDED INTO THE HEAVENS..." (Acts 2:34)

 Will you, therefore, BELIEVE THE WORD OF Yahweh; will you believe your OWN EYES, and your OWN BIBLE, or will you believe the oft-repeated FABLES of IGNORANT MEN and DECEIVERS?

 Since much has already been made about the false teachings of our "Ministers," we will present just one, of many, of those false teachings. "...for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem." (Isaiah 2:3)

 Jerusalem, Jerusalem. There is probably more confused preaching in recent years on "Jerusalem" than on any other name from the Scriptures except perhaps for the word "Jew." Scripture such as that quoted above is used time and time again to mean the literal city of Jerusalem in old Palestine. They say Yahweh is going to restore His people Israel and will, indeed has, already began to set up His earthly kingdom, from which "Jewish" missionaries will go out to preach the gospel all over the world! Others claim this "Jerusalem" is a "heavenly" city, located somewhere else other than on the earth.

 It is important that you understand "Historic Jerusalem is not Prophetic Jerusalem." For one of the major sources of confusion found in today's preaching comes from "Ministers" who are unable to separate historic Bible cities from Prophetic cities of the Bible. [That is not surprising as they can not separate the House of Israel, the House of Judah and the House of David from one another, either]. They do fairly well with Babylon, since the actual city has been destroyed and exists no longer. So when Babylon is used in prophecy, they realize it MUST be something other than the old city.

 But with Jerusalem they are fooled and confused. Because the old city still exists and still carries its ancient name, they assume prophetic Jerusalem must have something to do with the ancient city of Jerusalem.

Is Elijah In Heaven? - Part 6

 It was Voltaire who is credited with saying, "If you would speak with me, define your terms." He realized that words must have an understandable meaning to both parties in a conversation, or one would be confused or deceived. And so it is with "Jerusalem." Please follow us through the Scriptures to find Yahweh's TRUE meaning of Jerusalem, when He says, "For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the Word of the Lord from Jerusalem."

 In the Book of Matthew, from the mouth of Yeashua we find: "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." (Matthew 23:37-39)

 Here Christ was speaking to the city of Jerusalem, while He was standing and looking at it.  Jerusalem, the city that had killed the prophets of Israel down through the centuries; and He said Jerusalem, "your house is left unto you desolate." Yeashua could not have been speaking of prophetic Jerusalem; for it has a glorious future!

 Following are some of the Scripture verses used by those who insist that the old city of Jerusalem will be the Jerusalem that will be "chosen" and "blessed" of Yahweh. From the first chapter of Zechariah: "...I am jealous for Jerusalem and for Zion with a great jealousy...I am returned to Jerusalem with mercies: my house shall be built in it...and the Lord shall yet comfort Zion, and shall yet choose Jerusalem." (Zechariah 1:14-17)

 Those who quote them, say they mean that Yahweh will set up the Temple [His house] at some future time in the old city of Jerusalem. However, there are other phrases in the same verses which must be considered. Those are: "...Thus saith the Lord of hosts; My cities through prosperity shall YET BE SPREAD ABROAD ...and the Lord shall yet comfort Zion, and shall yet choose Jerusalem." (Zechariah 1:17)

 Since the phrase, "spread abroad" was spoken through Zechariah while he was IN old Palestine, it MUST mean places OTHER than old Palestine!

 Yeashua also gave us an indication that the "cities" of Israel would be in great number and cover much territory. In Matthew chapter 10 are found His well known instructions to the twelve disciples, where He tells them to: "But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." (Matthew 10:6)

 Then He said: "...for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come." (Matthew 10:23)

 The disciples could have gone over the towns in old Palestine in a matter of weeks, and missionaries still could do so today [But the present day State of Israel will not allow Christian "Ministers" to preach to their citizens]. But if the cities were "spread abroad" and in great numbers, it could not be done so quickly.

 It also must be taken into consideration that Zechariah, as a Prophet to Israel, spoke not only to those in the Babylonian captivity, but to the millions of Israelites who were at that time in the Assyrian lands and NEVER returned to Jerusalem or Palestine. That Zechariah's prophecy was not fulfilled by the return of less than 45,000 Israelites from Babylon under Ezra and Nehemiah will become clear as we go on. Also, what the "Jerusalem" is that the Lord "shall yet choose" is made more clear by reading on in the next verses from the very same prophet. "I lifted up mine eyes again, and looked, and behold a man with a measuring line in his hand. Then said I, Whither goest thou? And he said unto me, To measure Jerusalem, to see what is the breadth thereof, and what is the length thereof. And, behold, the angel that talked with me went forth, and another angel went out to meet him, And said unto him, Run, speak to this young man, saying, Jerusalem shall be inhabited as TOWNS without walls for the MULTITUDE OF MEN AND CATTLE THEREIN." (Zechariah 2:1-4)

 Boy, that's some description. "Towns" [plural; more than one] and many men and cattle were to be in it. This is the Jerusalem of prophecy, and it [Jerusalem] is so large it took an angel to measure it! Thus, it becomes obvious, this was because it had been "spread abroad" and was prophesied in (Zechariah 1:17). In Chapter 8 of Zechariah [he has much to say about prophetic Jerusalem] we find: "Thus saith the Lord of hosts; I was jealous for Zion with great jealousy, an I was jealous for her with great fury. Thus saith the Lord; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem..." (Zec. 8:2-3) So, you see, Yahweh says He will be in both Zion and Jerusalem. Zion is the seat of government; Jerusalem is the whole nation.

 "...and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; and the mountain of the Lord of hosts the holy mountain." (Zechariah 8:3) This is similar to what can be found in Chapter 2 of Isaiah and Chapter 4 of Micah, "the mountain of the Lord." It will help you understand prophecy, if you know that "mountain" usually means "nation." Micah, Isaiah, Zechariah, and others are actually saying that prophetic Jerusalem will be "the nation of the Lord." Then we read: "Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Behold, I will save my people from the east country, and from the west country; And I will bring them, and they shall dwell IN THE MIDST OF JERUSALEM: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God, in truth and in righteousness."

 Now if we take these prophecies and attempt to put them in little old Palestine, we are in trouble! It is just not large enough. As these Scriptures show, the Lord will dwell there, Zion will be there, many from the east country and the west country, a multitude of men and cattle, and it will "spread abroad" and be so large that angels will have to measure it. It is sure that they could not dwell "in the midst of Jerusalem."

 Some statistics on the Jewish occupied area of old Jerusalem and Palestine show it is not of sufficient size for a "multitude of people." Jerusalem, as it was set aside by the United Nations, has 289 sq. miles. It is about 20 miles long and 15 miles wide. Which makes it about the size of Phoenix, Arizona and its suburbs. Other comparisons would be Minneapolis, Minn. and its suburbs or about twice the size of Baltimore. The entire country of Palestine, as established by the U. N. Mandate, was 7,993 sq. miles.

 Since the so-called "war" in 1967, the area controlled has increased substantially, but even if they [the Jews] took control of several entire Arab countries, it would still be smaller than just one of the average American States! That is hardly fitting for Zechariah's prophecy, is it? This confusion among our "Ministers" is also caused by their mistaken belief that Yahweh chose the old city of Jerusalem perpetually as the place where He would place His Name. But like Shiloh, Jehovah's presence there was conditional upon Israel obeying Him. This is made very plain in Jeremiah, where we read: "The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, Stand in the gate of the Lord's house [the Temple in Jerusalem], and proclaim there this word, and say. Hear the word of the Lord, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship the Lord." (Jer. 7:1-2)

 So Yahweh gave Jeremiah a commandment to speak to all those who worshiped at the Temple. Verses 3 through 10 give a promise that if they obeyed the Lord, they would then: "...dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever." (Jeremiah 7:7)

 But then Yahweh accused them of disobeying and said: "Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the Lord. But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I set my name at the first, and see what I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel." (Zechariah 7:11-12)

 Then Yahweh pronounced the fate of the Temple at Jerusalem: "Therefore will I do unto this house [the Temple], which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers [Jerusalem and Judah], AS I HAVE DONE TO SHILOH." (Zec. 7:14)

 In order to see what Yahweh has done to Jerusalem, we must see what He did to Shiloh. Its history as the place where Yahweh had set His Name "at the first" starts in Joshua Chapter 18: "And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of the congregation there." (Joshua 18:1)
 

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