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Resurrection of the Just and Unjust, Part 2
Text: Rev. 20:4-15
Summary: The subject of what happens to a person
after death (called individual or personal
eschatology), though often subject to novel
interpretations, is discernible from Scripture and is
dramatically and powerfully presented in this
passage, where it serves as both a comfort to
Christians and a warning to unbelieving sinners.
I. A CONFUSING TOPIC. Common beliefs about the
afterlife that are not taught in Scripture: 1.
Dualism; 2. Compartmentalization; 3. Soul sleep;
4. Purgatory; 5. Annihilation. Though man is
confused about it, Scripture is not.
II. A COMPREHENSIBLE TOPIC.
A. Confessional summary (1689 Baptist Confession,
chapter 32). The Reformed Confessions (1689,
Westminster, Savoy Heidelberg, Belgic, Helvitic), are
in almost perfect agreement.
B. Timeline: Life After Death.
1. At death, all go to the grave, where they return
to dust. In Scripture, the death of the body ‚Äē not
the soul ‚Äē is often called ‚Äúsleep.‚ÄĚ
2. The souls of believers, which were raised to
life at the new birth, go immediately to heaven, to
live and reign with Christ until His Second Coming.
This is called the ‚Äúfirst resurrection.‚ÄĚ
3. The souls of unbelievers go immediately to hell,
where their eternal punishment begins. [They were
born spiritually dead & never passed from death to
4. At te Second Coming, there is a bodily
resurrection of all humanity, in which all who
‚Äúsleep‚ÄĚ [i.e., their bodies] will awake & go to their
C. Scriptural Teaching. The following passages
must be considered: Dan. 12:1-3, John 5:24-29, Acts
D. Modern Departure.