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Last Things


After Death, a temporary State

1 Pt 1:6-7brief trial to achieve Christ
Lk 12:59leave after payment in full

After Death, Purification by Fire

2 Sm 12:13-14forgiven, then suffering
Ws 3:5-6God tests by fire, then heaven
Zc 13:8-9God purifies righteous by fireA purification of the righteous as by fire
1 Cr 3:13our works tested by fire
1 Cr 3:15saved, but only through fire
Co 1:24extra suffering
1 Pt 1:6-7faith test (fig. by fire)
Ju 1:23saved by being snatched from fire

After Death, State of Forgiveness

Mt 12:32unforgiven in this age or nextForgiven in this world (age) or the next, directly describes a next state wherein forgiveness can be obtained.
Sr 7:33-37The dead in need of grace"restrain not grace from the dead" meaning do not withhold grace ('aid,' in context) from the dead. Why would the dead need grace? Those that have chosen hell are beyond grace. Are those bound for heaven in need of grace? If they must need to be "made perfect" for their past sins, then they do indeed need to be "purged" of their sins and obtain forgiveness.

See related topic: Prayers for the Dead.
1 Pt 3:18-20Jesus preached to the dead
1 Pt 4:6Gospel preached to the dead
He 12:5-14God chastens us into holiness
He 12:23souls in heaven "made perfect""Spirits," not living, physical beings but the souls of dead men ("just men" in the KJV), "made perfect." The process (or state or command) wherein the souls of the dead are "made perfect" is that which Catholics call Purgatory.
Ja 3:2we all fall short in many respects
Rv 21:27nothing unclean enters heavenIf nothing unclean enters heaven, yet we all fall short in many respects (James 3:2) then some process must occur so that we are "made perfect" so as to enter heaven.


Je 30:11God to chastise... the faithful remnant before they can enter the promised land. Some have held this as an early foreshadowing of the purging of our unclean natures before entering heaven.

More than just Heaven and Hell

Mt 12:32can't refer to either heaven or hellThere are more "states" of being than just Heaven and Hell
Jn 11:39-44Lazarus wasn't in heaven, hellWhere was the soul of Lazarus after he died? He wasn't in hell, as no one returns from there. He wasn't in heaven. This is not to say that he was in Purgatory, but simply to point out that one or more states other than heaven and hell exist after death.
AA 9:36-41Tabitha wasn't in heaven, hellTabitha was dead, but was not in Heaven (otherwise, why should she leave?) or Hell (where she could not leave).

Purifying a people

Ma 3:3Purify like goldRefining and beautifying gold (a process that involves fire) as a metaphor for purifying a people in preparation of service to the Lord.