Let's keep our eyes on our goal

Where Do You Go After You Die?
written by Kraig Josiah Rice

          So, what is all of this stuff about Heaven and Hell? Did the Christian church in general invent these concepts of Heaven and Hell so the clergy could have psychological weapons at their hands to influence human behaviour? Why is all of this so hard to believe and accept for some people? It may surprise you that God created these two places for His own reasons. The church in general preaches and teaches about these facts because of it.

          This is important teaching involving basic Christian discipleship facts that are fundamental to biblical doctrine and very important in one's understanding of his or her eternal destiny. That is why I am teaching on it and sharing it with you. Because I believe it is important. So, let's not take my word for it but let's examine what the Bible has to say about Heaven and Hell.

          Jesus Christ was the greatest teacher (while He was on earth in His human body) regarding Heaven and Hell. Originally, He created both places. That makes Him an expert in this field so He is the One to consult if we want to study these truths of His.

          Where do you go after you die? The answer to this question depends on what spiritual condition you are in at the time of your death.

Heaven is a place of beauty and peace

I. If you are saved (you belong to Jesus Christ) then you go immediately to Heaven as soon as you die. What is the scripture on this?

"Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord:
(For we walk by faith, not by sight:)
We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord"
(2 Corinthians 5:6-8).

"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him"
(I Corinthians 2:9).

"In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you"
(John 14:2).

The believer goes to Heaven as soon as he or she dies. Here is what Paul the Apostle had to say:
"For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better"
(Phillipians 1:23).

"Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord"
(1 Thessalonians 4:17).

Here is what Paul also had to say. Most biblical scholars believe that he was talking about his own experience just after he was stoned to death:
"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"
(2 Corinthians 12:2).

II. If you are not saved (you belong to Satan) then you go immediately to Hades as soon as you die. What are the scriptures on this?

"The wicked shall be turned into hell (Hades), and all the nations that forget God."
(Psalm 9: 17). The word hell here is Hades in the original language.

"I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely.
He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."
(Revelation 21:6-8).

 Truth often angers  those whom it does  not fully convince

According to the Bible there is no middle ground. You are either in one place or the other.

          The teachings of Jesus Christ on Hell are extremely hard to believe and accept for some people because they don't want to walk on the narrow road but stay on the broad road. They don't want to come through the gate (which is Jesus Christ) but want to come some other way
(Matthew 7: 13 - 14). Since it is God's game, they want to change the game rules. Or manipulate God's word to say something it was not meant to say. They are headed towards Hell so this makes them extremely uncomfortable. Some disregard or throw away Jesus and His word all together and neglect Him or embrace a totally false teaching and/or religion hoping that hell does not exist and that they will never go there. Some create a god that they are comfortable with in their minds and so guide their lives in this direction. And Satan always delights in helping a person stay confused and in unbelief until that person dies so he gets that person's soul to spend eternity with him in Hell.

III. Now, let's examine the scriptures on Hades. This is an interesting study and I will try to make it as simple for you as I can. Hades is the temporary holding place for those who have died in an unsaved condition-- it is a type of Hell but it is not the biblical lake of fire called Hell. The old King James translators of the Bible, however, used the word Hades to refer to Hell. But this should not confuse us too much. If a person winds up in Hades there are no second chances for that person. Jesus told us this true story that explains this fact very graphically:

"There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:
And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores,
And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores.
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;
And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
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.

          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.
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.
Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:

          For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment.
Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.
And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.
And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead."
(Luke 16: 19 - 31).

So you see, the rich man was not saved, but Lazarous was saved. This is spiritual separation, not economic separation. This is the best and most graphic teaching on Hades and it is not a parable as some false Biblical expositors claim. Moses and the prophets refer to God's Word. God's Word has the answers to keep one out of hell. Those answers are explained here in this document.

          Up until the resurrection of Jesus Christ Hades was divided into two halves with a great gulf fixed between them. The saved dead went to Paradise (on one side of the gulf for the righteous) and the unsaved dead went to Hades (on one side of the gulf for the unrighteous). This is what the above scriptures bring out.

          The time element in the above true story is very important because Hades has changed since Jesus was on earth and told us this story.

          Since the creation of modern mankind Hades has existed. God has done this for His own purposes, "The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished..."
(2 Peter 2:9). The fallen angels are chained up in Hades awaiting their day in court: "For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell (Hades), and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment..."
(2 Peter 2:4).

          Immediately after Jesus died He went down to Hades (on one side of the gulf for the righteous called Paradise), introduced Himself to all of them, preached to them (explained who He was and what He was doing), and and then took all of them out of Hades and into Heaven:
"Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
(Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things)"
(Ephesians 4:8-10).

"Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led CAPTIVITY CAPTIVE:"
(Psalm 68:18a).

          We know that Jesus went down into Paradise after He died. How do we know this? Here is what Jesus told the thief on the cross,
"And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, Today shalt thou be with me in Paradise"
(Luke 23:43).

          Once Jesus left Hades with the righteous dead then Hades was enlarged for the unsaved dead because now there was no longer any gulf there or one side containing the righteous. Isaiah, the prophet, prophesied concerning this when he said, "Therefore hell (Hades) hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it."
(Isaiah 5:14).

Never throw your life's purpose away
on that which does not matter
Satan wants to corrupt your

          Not only did Jesus Christ resurrect Himself from the dead, but He also resurrected a massive amount of His saints from Hades to Heaven at the same time. As a witness to this event, "...the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many."
(Matthew 27: 52 & 53).

          Jesus Christ has all power in Heaven and earth. His resurrection proved that "I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death."
(Revelation 1: 18).

          So, what is eventually going to happen to all of the people who are in Hades? Each one will be taken out of Hades and given a trial before Jesus Christ as their judge at the great White Throne Judgement. In essence Hades will be cast into the lake of fire (literal Hell). What are the scriptures on this?

          "And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.
And death and hell (hades) were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.
And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."

(Revelation 20: 10-15).

IV. God wants you to go to Heaven and so do I. God wants you to repent of your sins and invite Jesus Christ to come and live inside of your heart. This is how I was saved and it is also how you can be saved as well. God wants you to worship Him and love Him for who He is. Then you will be saved and on your way to Heaven. So I invite you right now during this moment in time to bow your head, tell the Lord Jesus Christ that you are sorry for the sins that you have committed or omitted and that you won't do them again, and invite Him to come into your heart. Once He has done this you must get discipled so please go to the nearest Assemblies of God church or mainline Christianity church in your area every Sunday and ask the pastor there to disciple you. Next, you must get into God's word and study it diligently. Then you will start growing in your new found faith and there will be a radiance from God's spirit coming from you that will be noticable to all around you.

          The attitude of your heart is very important when you pray this prayer. Don't play games with God. This is serious stuff. This is what Jesus had to say about it:
"And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:
Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.
The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.
I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.
And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.
I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted."
(Luke 18:9-14).

V. Now, here are some more study scriptures that have a lot to say moreso on the subject that we should not neglect that help us understand all of this:

"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."
(2 Peter 3:9).

"Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?"
(Ezekiel 33:11).
This scripture was for Israel, but remember the rule- All scripture is not to us but all scripture is for us...

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.
For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God."
(John 3:16 - 21).

"And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.
Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,
And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem."
(Luke 24: 43 - 47).

An author of some gospel literature also wrote about this subject in his writings:


          But there is good news. You can go to Heaven rather than Hell. I now send you the invitation to change sides and to invite Jesus Christ to come and live in your heart. When Jesus literally comes into your heart any Satanic demons there will be literally and instantly cast out by Him. It's time that you were immersed in love rather than in pain and in hate. It's time that you felt peace in your heart rather than torment. It's time that your conscience be cleansed from guilt. It's time that your sins were instantly washed away by the blood of Christ. God can set you free from everything evil that you have been involved in. And it's done just like the old hymn says: Nothing But The Blood of Jesus.

          Jesus Christ offers you a new life in Him. Jesus loves you and He wants you. He is willing to forgive you for anything that you did as a devil worshipper. Repent right now, ask Him to take away your sins, ask Him to apply His cleansing blood to your heart and soul, acknowledge that Jesus Christ is God the Son and ask Him to possess you, and tell Him that you are sorry for making a mess of your life. Tell him that you are sorry for hurting the people who love you. Tell him that you are sorry and made a mistake by worshipping Satan and him imps. Then watch what Christ does for you- expect a miracle!


          God does not want anyone in hell. Hell was not made for mankind- it was made for the devil and his angels. No one is in hell (the Lake of Fire) yet because no judgement has been convened by God. God does not send anyone to hell, however on the contrary, a person can send himself or herself there. You determine your eternal destiny. It's your choice!

So, wrapping this all up, this is the simple gospel truth of where you and I will go after we die.

"See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;
In that I command thee this day to love the LORD thy God, to walk in his ways, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the LORD thy God shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.
But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them;
I denounce unto you this day, that ye shall surely perish, and that ye shall not prolong your days upon the land, whither thou passest over Jordan to go to possess it.
I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:
That thou mayest love the LORD thy God, and that thou mayest obey his voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him: for he is thy life, and the length of thy days: that thou mayest dwell in the land which the LORD sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them."
(Deuteronomy 30:15-20)

"I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance"
(Luke 15:7).

An honest man alters his opinions to fit the truth
a dishonest man alters the truth to fit his opinions

God wants to have a relationship with you now- in advance of Heaven. You are more important to Him for who you are (just yourself) than for what you do:

"He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.
And the seventy returned again with joy, saying, Lord, even the devils are subject unto us through thy name.
And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven."
My note: God is more powerful than Satan.
"Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven."
(Luke 10: 16 - 20).

Heaven is a beautiful place

presented to you by the Bread On The Waters Ministry
of Kraig Josiah Rice


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As of April 5, 2005