What happens to Christian Believers when they die?
- The spirit of a Believer in Christ who dies goes to heaven immediately. His body returns to dust, awaiting the resurrection and transformation (of the once physical body) into a glorified body to be with God forever.
- When Jesus returns for the Final Judgment, ‘Believers’ and ‘Unbelievers’ are judged.
- Believers are judged for their deeds on earth, and some will receive their due rewards. They can enter the “new heaven and earth.”
- Unbelievers and those who didn’t know what Jesus did to save mankind, are judged for their sins. If their name was not written in the book of life, they were thrown into the lake of fire.
Christian Believers after death
When Believers in Christ dies, their soul and spirit are taken to paradise (heaven) immediately because their sins were forgiven (and washed away) that moment they received Christ as Savior on earth (John 3:16, 18, 36). This heaven is different from the “New Heaven and Earth,” which has yet to come. (Rev. 21:1-5)
Physical body returns to dust, but soul & spirit lives
The body remains in the grave as if sleeping, but their soul and spirit live in heaven (paradise). Paradise is the heavenly place where all Believers stay after their physical death. (2 Cor. 5:6-8; Phil. 1:23; Rev. 2:7; Luke 23:43; Acts 7:56-59; Ecc 12:7)
→ Bible verses that indicate Christians go to heaven immediately after they die.
When Jesus returns, ‘Believers’ (still alive on earth; those in the grave; those in paradise) are raptured in the clouds. They shall be caught up together and into the sky, to meet the LORD in the air. Their bodies transformed into a ‘glorified body.’ (1 Thessalonians 4:14-17; Matthew 24:30-31)
The physical body (in the grave) of ‘Believers’ are resurrected first (1 Thessalonians 4:16). Their bodies transformed into an immortal “glorified body” and reunited with their soul and spirit. (1 Corinthians 15:51-53)
Likewise, ‘Believers’ living on earth (when Jesus returns), are instantly raptured and transformed into this “glorified body.” All Believers will be like Christ and see Him as He is. ( 1 John 3:2; 1 Thessalonians 4:17)
→ When will Ezekiel 37:1-14, the Vision of the Valley of Dry Bones, happen?
Judgment Seat of Christ for Believers
There is an exclusive judgment for ‘Christian Believers’ called ‘Bema‘ (raised platform). They will appear before the “Judgment Seat of Christ.” They may receive what is due for what they did, good or evil. (1 Cor. 3:12-15; 2 Cor. 5:10; Romans 14:10)
Marriage of the Lamb
Believers in Christ are given bright and pure fine linen to wear and invited to the “marriage feast of the Lamb. It is the “purification” of Believers, united with Christ as His bride. (Revelation 19:6-10).
Armageddon: “Second Coming of Christ”
After the ‘Marriage of the Lamb” of Believers, Jesus returns to earth as King (Second Coming). The “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” leads an army. His name is “Word of God.” The armies of heaven riding white horses and wearing pure white linen, follow Him. (Revelation 19:14)
A sharp sword came from His mouth and struck nations with it. The beast and his armies are defeated. The beast and the false prophet (anti-Christ) were thrown alive into the lake of fire. (Revelation 19:11-21)
After Armageddon, Jesus fulfills His promise to rule God’s people (remnants) as their King for a thousand years. Satan, the ancient dragon serpent, was thrown into the pit and sealed for a thousand years. After that, he must be set free for a short time. (Revelation 20:3)
The dead martyrs and those who did not worship the beast or its image, and did not have the mark of the beast were first resurrected. They became the priests of God and given authority to judge. They reigned with Christ for a thousand years on earth. The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were over. (Revelation 20:5)
Second Resurrection & Judgment of non-Believers
After the Millennial Reign, the rest of the dead were resurrected (non-believers, those who didn’t know Jesus’ offer of salvation). They stood before the “Great White Throne Judgment” to be judged for their sins. Books were opened and if their name was not written in the book of life, they were thrown into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:11-15)
→ History of God’s Chosen people.
The New Heaven and New Earth
The old earth and heavenly paradise are no more. The “Holy City” (new city of Jerusalem) comes down from heaven made of gold and precious stones. There is no more death, pain, or sadness. Nothing impure will ever enter it, and Believers are beautiful and immortal. (Revelation 21:1-22:5)
There are trees whose leaves are for healing the nations. The sun and moon are no more for God’s light shine forever (Revelation 21:1-22). This is the final destination for all Believers saved by Jesus.