Hell and Heaven experiences
Lamentation 3: 55,56 -
I called upon thy name, O LORD, out of the low dungeon. Thou hast heard my voice: hide not thine ear at my breathing, at my cry.
Jeremiah was a mighty Man of God and was the most hated by the people of his time because he always became a thorn for them since they were living an ungodly life while calling themselves people of God. Whenever Jeremiah spoke in the Name of the Lord, the people would hate it for they wanted to live a life like the worldly people, worshiping many gods like them and also have God as one of the many gods they had.
They put Jeremiah in a dungeon and a historian was explaining how this dungeon was and how Jeremiah was lowered in it; how he was bonded and kept in it for many days. Jeremiah states this dungeon / pit experience was like hell (lowest pit).
There are many people who claim to have visited hell or heaven and many Christian sadly fall for these lies. This happens because of lack of understanding of scriptures. People do not go by what scriptures state but go by the pictures or painting which has been drilled in them from childhood. Ask any person what is hell and they say a place where eternal fire is burning, a place where Satan and his goons rule. They put people who fall there into pots of burning oil (like cooking them) and enjoy doing it. And when you ask them about Heaven they give a fairy-tale picture of grand castle of gold, bright lights and greenery. The most common is of Jesus Christ as a man wearing a golden crown standing with open arms to receive them on steps of gold having a grand arch gate at its mouth.
Paul himself when he had a Heaven experience at his early spiritual stage was not able to tell how this happened, note in consecutive sentences he again repeats his doubt, if he had a vision or it was an out of bodily (spirit) experience. But we have people who directly claim to an out of body /in spirit gone to hell or Heaven and returned.
Paul did not claim any fairy-tale experience but from his letters we see the Lord made him understand through this vision the levels of Heaven and the differences at the various levels.
Before I too would believe these people who claimed hell and Heaven experiences, but when the Lord explained what hell and Heaven was to me, today I can easily discern these people's claims.
It was claims like these which caused the early Catholic Church to believe in a fictitious place called Purgatory. After they fell for these visions, they then started searching for scriptures which supported it. Since they could find it in the 66 books of the Bible they added some books to the Bible which seem to support this concept called Purgatory and many of their non-biblical beliefs. For 1400 years they read these additional books as reference books and not as canonized books but when they were questioned on their false beliefs and wanted something to support their false beliefs they canonized these books and today say it is in the Bible.
God warned that false prophets would lead us away from the Truth when we start to believe in them more than God and God's Word.
It is always good to understand the Old Testament through the New Testament for Jesus understood it and so also the Apostles when they were baptized in the Holy Spirit, but the Jews never understood the Torah or the Books of the Prophets even though they claimed, and claim to be scholars of it. Therefore to go Jewish understanding of scriptures would be a great mistake. The Jewish have a similar to the Catholic understanding of hell and Heaven (but without Jesus for they think Jesus is in hell).
Today God is warning us about believing people and their visions unless we confirm them with the Word of God. If we find them stating anything that is contrary to the Word, we need to immediately reject their visions.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, your people are far from the understanding of scriptures therefore fall prey to deceit. People claim to be your representatives and through these distorted visions misled your people and slowly make them believe in lies and vanity. Lord we pray your people be strong in understanding of scriptures and not fall prey to the deceivers...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference ]
2 Corinthians 12:2-5
2 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: God knoweth;) such an one caught up to the third heaven.
3 And I knew such a man, (whether in the body, or out of the body, I cannot tell: God knoweth;)
4 How that he was caught up into paradise, and heard unspeakable words, which it is not lawful for a man to utter.
5 Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.
19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
20 And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
21 And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;
23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.
25 But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented.
26 And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.
27 Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:
28 For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
29 Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.
1 Peter 3:18-20
18 For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
19 By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;
20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.
Revelation 2:10 - Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life.
Revelation 20:7 - And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison,
Proverbs 15:11 - Hell and destruction are before the LORD: how much more then the hearts of the children of men?
Isaiah 14:15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.
Psalms 139:8 If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.
Revelation 20:1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
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