Prepared by William Earnhardt for Sabbath School Class, Sabbath December 3, 2022.
Main Theme: We will look at some un-Biblical theories about life after death as well as what the Bible teaches about life after death.
Read in Class: Mark 9::42-48 and Isaiah 66:24. Define the common thread of these passages.
Study: How do you understand the expression “their worm does not die?” Click here for a hint.
Apply: In the end, we are either totally saved or totally lost. There is no middle ground. We can have either eternal life or will face eternal destruction. What choices do you have to make today? How should this reality — eternal life or eternal destruction — impact those choices?
Share: Your friend says we all are going to spend eternity somewhere, either in heaven or hell. How do you answer your friend? Click here for hints.
Read in Class: Malachi 4:1 and Jude 7. Define the common thread of these passages.
Study: How can these passages help us better understand the notion of “eternal fire” or the idea, as Jesus had expressed it, that the lost will be in “everlasting fire” (Matt. 18:8) or in a “fire that shall never be quenched”? (Mark 9:43, NKJV). Remember a camp fire can disintegrate a marshmallow and keep on burning. Just because the fire continues to burn does not mean the marshmallow still exists.
Apply: As unfortunate as the fires of hell are, what does the truth about hell reveal to us about God’s love, especially in contrast to the idea of eternal torment?
Share: Your friend says that the Bible says the wicked will burn forever so that must mean that they will be alive and burning through all eternity. How would Exodus 21:6 help your friend understand the meaning of the word “forever, simply meanimg for the duration or until you die?
Read in Class: Ecclesiastes 9:10, Ezekiel 18:20-22,and Hebrews 9:27. Define the common thread of these passages.
Study: How do these passages refute the theory of purgatory?
Apply: What do errors like purgatory or eternal torment teach us about the importance of doctrine? Why is what we believe of importance, and not just in whom we believe?
Share: Your friend says that we may not be able to buy our way into heaven but if our good deeds outweigh our bad deeds our works can get us into heaven. What do you tell your friend?
Read in Class: Acts 2:29, 34-35 and 1 Corinthians 15:16-18. What is the common thread of these passages?
Study: How do these passages shed light on the state of the dead and those awaiting resurrection?
Apply: What are ways in which you could help people understand that the idea that the dead are asleep in the ground is really “good news,” in the sense that they truly are at rest and know no pain and suffering?
Share: Your friend who said we will all spend eternity in heaven or hell is still confused, thinking the soul is immortal, and we all have eternal life either in heaven or in hell. How could you use 1 John 5:3-12 and 1 Timothy 5:15-16 to show your friend that only those who accept the gift of salvation have eternal life?