What Did Jesus Do During His Three Days in the Grave?

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Did you know the answer to that question may be found in the story of the flood in Genesis 6? There is this strange verse tucked into the Flood story in Genesis 6:4 – “The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of men and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.” The verses that follow talk about God seeing the wickedness of mankind and his decision to send a flood to get a fresh start with humanity. For thousands of years people have debated who these “sons of God” were and what their nature was.

One source we have that tries to clear some of this up is the book of Enoch. We normally wouldn’t take much stock in a book that is written under a fictitious pseudonym but there are reasons to think it is valid on this issue (more on that in a minute). The book of Enoch, written around 300 B.C. is written as if by someone of the past (namely Noah’s great-grandfather Enoch). The book of Enoch says these were angels who came down and had relations with women on the earth and who were a bad influence on mankind, trying to lead them astray. The author of 1 Enoch says that God took these rebellious angels and locked them up in prison for their wickedness and rebellion.

“And the Lord said unto Michael: ‘Go, bind Semjâzâ and his associates who have united themselves with women so as to have defiled themselves with them in all their uncleanness. And when their sons have slain one another, and they have seen the destruction of their beloved ones, bind them fast for seventy generations in the valleys of the earth, till the day of their judgment and of their consummation, till the judgment that is for ever and ever is consummated. In those days they shall be led off to the abyss of fire: and to the torment and the prison in which they shall be confined for ever. And whosoever shall be condemned and destroyed will from thenceforth be bound together with them to the end of all generations. And destroy all the spirits of the reprobate and the children of the Watchers (angels), because they have wronged mankind…” (1 Enoch 10:11-16).

What does this have to do with Jesus in the grave? Peter references 1 Enoch in 1 Peter 3:18-20 when he wrote about what happened after Jesus died,

“For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, 19through whom also he went and preached to the spirits in prison 20who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built.”

Many have interpreted these verses to say some people got a second chance to obey the Gospel after they died. What else would Jesus preach than the Gospel? There are a few faulty assumptions that take place when we read 1 Peter with no knowledge of the book of Enoch (which Peter certainly had based on this text and 2 Peter 2:4 which specifically references angels put into prison by God). The first faulty assumption is that these spirits are the spirits of men. Enoch makes it clear that the spirits put in prison in the days of Noah were disobedient angels (as does Peter in the verses just referenced). The second faulty assumption people have brought to this text is that the message Jesus would preach would be the gospel, thus giving these spirits a second chance. Enoch tells us these spirits are awaiting judgment. So Jesus preached to these fallen angels a message of triumph and judgment. We would assume Jesus let them know that although they tried to lead mankind astray, God had the final word through what Jesus came to do and is now accomplishing in the world. Jesus preached to these disobedient spirits a message of victory and the finality of their own defeat. This, according to Peter, is what Jesus did while in the grave.

So, while we would normally not give Enoch much thought or weight, Peter deemed it fit in this instance through inspiration and so in this instance we can gain insight from Enoch and Peter on these matters.

Why does this matter? It should encourage us as Christians to know that Christ has paved the way for death to not be the final say. It should encourage us to know that he is putting all things under his feet and subduing those powers that seek to harm us. It should embolden us to know that our God has the power to put under lock and key those who seek our destruction and give us courage to move forward and accomplish God’s purposes for our lives without fear. I get the same feeling from knowing these verses in context that I do when I read 1 Cor 15:54-58,

“When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”[g]
55“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”[h]

56The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 58Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”

89 Responses

    1. Here are some “assumptions” (incorrect in my eyes!;ie. “faulty”) the author made in the above article.

      1) Jesus was alive while he was dead in the grave 3 days and 3 nights (72 hours). (See Psalm 164:4 Psalm 6:5; Ecc 9:5,6,10)

      2) That Peter even knew or consciously thought about the book of 1Enoch while writing 1Peter & 2 Peter. (See 2Peter 1:21,22)


      Jesus could not have proclaimed his victory while he was “in the grave” since he was not in his resurrected body until AFTER he was resurrected from the dead! 1Peter 3:19’s “by which” is referring to his “RESURRECTED BODY”


      Apparently the author does not believe that Jesus was DEAD in the grave for 3 days.


      Paul believed that Jesus DIED (see Thes 4:14) and rose again the 3rd day (See 1 Cor 15:4)

      Peter believed he was DEAD and that God raised him the 3rd day See Acts 10:40)

      Angles believed he was DEAD and was raised the 3rd day, See Luke 24:7)

      Jesus believed he would be DEAD and would be raised FROM THE DEAD on the the 3rd day

      Lu 24:46
      And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise FROM THE DEAD the third day:

      DEAD MEN are dead, JESUS COULD NOT HAVE WITNESSED TO THE SPIRITS during the 3 days he was buried and DEAD in the grave SO it MUST have taken place AFTER the 3 days while he was “shown openly” in his resurrected body.

      “ONE MORE THING” (quote from Colombo)
      To corectly answer:

      “What Did Jesus Do During His Three Days in the Grave?”
      He did NOTHING because he was dead!


    2. Bob,

      Thanks for your feedback and critique. We all make assumptions, don’t we. That comes as no surprise. Some assumptions are better than others depending on what they are founded on. Let me address your points.

      1 – You said my assumption that Jesus was alive in the grave was faulty. You put a few proof texts out there that say absolutely nothing about Jesus’ situation in the grave. Your interpretation of those verses is not based on actual exegesis of the verses themselves, but by looking for some verses that might contradict a point those verses are not actually addressing (= prooftexts). More on this later.

      2 – You said that it is an assumption that Peter was referencing Enoch in 1 & 2 Peter. I agree. It is an assumption. I think there are some pretty solid connections that I mentioned in the initial post (even more solid in 2 Peter than in 1 Peter) but you haven’t addressed any of that. But I do agree it is an assumption because Peter never says, “Now I am going to cite Enoch on this one.” Instead, you give me a proof text from 2 Peter that, if I take your line of reasoning on, should also mean that Paul should never have cited from any of the pagan authors he cited from. Are you willing to apply your interpretation of 2 Peter 1:21-22 to all extrabiblical references? There are many. So your prooftexting of 2 Peter 1:21-22 doesn’t really hold up.

      I will address your points in more detail later when I have more time. Thanks for your patience.

    3. Hi Matt,

      Thank you for the note

      The verses I quoted to you are the only ones I know that clearly and simply describe the state of man after he is dead. If you know of any other verses that add any further light please send those to me so I may consider them.

      If you believe that a man is not dead once he has died please share those simple verses with me also and how they “fit” with the ones from Psalms and Ecc.

      In Mt 12:40 Jesus compares the state o fHis death to the state of Jonas death. Simply, both Jesus and Jonas were dead for three days and three nights.

      For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

      This also agrees with what we read and heard of Paul, Peter, the Angel and Jesus: that Jesus died according to the Scriptures and arose the third day.

      If you have any Scripture which describes Jesus state of death as still being alive while on the cross or during the time he was buried please send those verses to me.

      Please spare me by not repeating to me the theological arguments, assumptions or opinions you may have or read; I would prefer to read simple and clear verses which you can send which will interpret themselves in the verse, in the context or where they have been used before. I am a simple guy.

      I’m still wondering what you believe about Jesus? (Feel free to answer Yes or No to the following questions if you care to reply.)

      1) Do you believe he was dead on the Cross? 1a) Do you believe he only “appeared” dead on the cross but was still alive? 2) Do you believe he was dead in the grave? 3) Do you believe it only “appeared” to be dead in the grave but was still alive? 4) Do you believe he died on the Cross, came alive in the grave, visited the fallen angles. came back to the grave just in time for Sunday morning sunrise service?

      I am not sure what you believe or why…

      I am sure what I believe:

      Jesus Died on the Cross, remained dead for 3 days and 3 nights and that God raised him from the dead after the 3 days with a resurrected body.

      1 Cor 15:3b,4 …how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

      1 Cor 15:44,45 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body, and there is a spiritual body. And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.

      I know of NO BIBLE verse that say anything different. If I have missed any verses please send them to me.

      Where does it say that 1) he Died 2) burried 3) got up while he was dead and witnessed to fallen angels ??????????

      Please send Chapter and Verse..

      My point on 2 Peter 1:21 and 22:

      MY Error! 2 Peter 1:20,21

      My Point is: that in verse 21 we are taught that the WORD does not come by the will of man. Simply stated GOD dictated to Peter EXACTLY what and how He wanted Peter to write. The assunption that Peter “quoted” from or “refereed” to a secular work is unneeded and a person addition of thought into the WORD that is unfounded in biblical truth.

      FOR a CLEAR EXAMPLE HOW the word was give to “holy men” please read and STUDY Jeremiah 36:1-5

      Mat, if you have the time please read the whole chapter.

      This is the CLEAREST example of how the WORD was given to holy men of God and should thrill your soul.

      Thank you!


      Date: Fri, 15 Feb 2013 20:14:38 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    4. Bob,

      Here is what you are missing. He did these things in the spirit. There are plenty of examples in scripture of people whose body is dead but whose spirit lives. In the Bible, resurrection is bodily resurrection. In the meantime, the spirit of a man waits. Here are a few to consider, there are more but we will start with these:

      1 – 1 Sam 28 – the spirit of Samuel is called up even though he is dead

      2 – Matt 17 – Moses and Elijah on the mount of transfiguration. How is Moses there with Jesus if his body was in the ground?

      3 -Revelation 6:9-11 shows us that there are martyred saints who cry out to God for vengeance. Their bodies are dead and yet they are very much alive in the spirit.

      Here is my point. What Jesus preached to the spirits in prison was done while Jesus was in the spirit to those spirits. His body was dead…you are right but there is more to a man than just his body (like you see in the examples above). I hope that makes sense. Let me know if this raises more questions.

      If I am understanding you correctly, you are saying someone has to be bodily alive to do anything and so Jesus, whose body was dead, would have been (by your logic) unable to preach to anyone. But the examples given above are clear that people have done things even while their bodies were dead…they did things in the spirit.

    5. OK, Matt, Now it makes sense to me what you believe but what you believe is spiritualism. Same as when a “medium” brings back the “spirit” of a dead one. They are doing nothing of the kind! They are making a connection with a particular devil spirit, specifically called a “famiiar spirit” in the bible. As mentioned in 1 Samuel 28:7

      Then said Saul unto his servants, Seek me a woman that hath a familiar spirit, that I may go to her, and enquire of her.

      This is NOT a “good angel” or spirit. Lev 19:31, Lev 20:6, and many other places in the Word God condemn this! Here is one example

      Le 20:27 A man also or woman that hath a familiar spirit, or that is a wizard, shall surely be put to death: they shall stone them with stones: their blood shall be upon them.

      Matt, You actually used 1 Sam 28 to support your openion! I dont believe it but you did.

      Did you know that one of the the reasons given in scripture for Sauls death is because he asked guidance from a familiar spirit in 1Sam 28 ???? WOW that is NOT a good example, did you read the whole chapter of 1 Sam 28 before you wrote me????

      1Ch 10:13 So Saul died for his transgression which he committed against the LORD…. and also for asking counsel of one that had a familiar spirit, to enquire of it;

      Familiar spirits are mentioned 17 times in the old testament and not once in a Godly way!

      Ec 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.

      Mathew 17, MATT MATT! Ghee wizz guy read what is written.. It doesn’t say that they were alive or their spirits were there. JESUS said it was only a VISION,

      Mathew 17:9 And as they came down from the mountain, Jesus charged them, saying, Tell the vision to no man, until the Son of man be risen again from the dead.

      I wont even bother trying to explain to you what is going on in Revelations as you are, so far, have not proved to me you can handle the milk of the word, the meat will make you sick!

      Where did you go to school? Are you ordained? OMG!!

      DO recall the FIRST LIE ever told in the bible????

      Genesis 3:4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

      You are telling the same lie as Satan told Eve! (But nicer). In stead of saying Jesus did NOT DIE on the cross, you are saying his spirit didnt die it just kept on going ….in other words he only suffered but didnt really die… How could he be raised from the dead if he really wasnt dead?? Unless Jesus completely died, both body and the spirit of man then he couldnt be our complete savior.

      OH well, my guess you are done with me and would much rather hold on to your traditional Errors. Too bad, I sense you have the commitment and willingness to serve God but are trapped in many traditional lies with no way out.

      Personally, I care more about what God thinks then what man falsely calls truth. Thank God that salvation is by grace or NONE of us would make it….



      Date: Sat, 16 Feb 2013 01:20:03 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    6. Hello Matt,

      I started to read (and then started to skim) the prior discussion. I admit I didn’t read it all, so it’s possible this was already considered (but just in case):

      The passage in question (about the spirits in prison) doesn’t say that Jesus preached to spirits in prison, at least not by speech or word, but rather by what he did:

      1 Peter 3:18-19 KJV
      (18) For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
      (19) By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

      I’m suggesting that if the sentence if properly diagrammed, it says that, “Christ … preached unto the spirits in prison” by that being “quickened by the Spirit. That His resurrection preached, not his death, and not his being dead or in a dead state.

      It doesn’t say that Jesus preached in the Spirit. Please check the words carefully.It says he was quickened by the Spirit, and by that quickening he preached to the spirits in prison.

      If Jesus had not risen, he wouldn’t have been able to preach victory or dominion over those spirits at all. I think it says in another place that if Christ had not risen, our preaching is in vain, and we would be without hope and of all men most miserable. In that light, how could Christ possibly have (effectively) preached anything before the resurrection?

      * * *

      Some side points for consideration on these thread tangents:

      1) Martin Luther, John Calvin, and King James Stewart all agreed that the spirit of Samuel was a demonic apparition, each of them having differing points of proof in that regard. These were not biblical lightweights. Could this point be worthy of reconsideration?

      2) Moses can be seen (or interpreted to be seen) in a vision the same way dragons and stars falling from heaven or apocalyptic horses can be seen. Jesus actually did say it was a vision.

      3) If Revelation 6:9-11 meant to tell us that the dead saints are crying out for vengeance, then by that same literal measure it also tells us that the dead saints are not avenged of those that slay them, and that they aren’t conscious any more (because they were told to go back to sleep, weren’t they?) Regardless, this context is also within a vision filled with images and symbolism.

      I haven’t checked in for a while, it’s nice to see you still active here. Hope you are well. Take care.

    7. Bob,

      I wasn’t condoning what Saul was trying to do and I do realize the penalities for that practice in the OT. But here was my point – Samuel actually appeared. Right, wrong, capital offense or not…he came forward, even though dead. I think you missed my point entirely. Yes I did read the whole chapter and yes I am aware and was aware when I wrote that of what the Torah says is the penalty for that practice. But you are missing my point! Samuel was dead and yet was able to be called forward. According to your theory, that just can’t happen. That is all I was saying. It is not a good example of a practice to do…but it IS a good example that physically dead people are spiritually very much alive. Make sense?

      Bob, you don’t need to get accusatory. Hear me out first brother.

    8. Point taken about being accusatory!

      HOWEVER, Samuel was dead and the spirit conjured up by the woman was not SAMUEL it was a DEVIL SPIRIT! It was not Samuel! Sam was dead, in the grave and as described by Ecc.

      The dead are dead not alive. If the were alive after death then Jesus didnt have to die for mans redemption…



      Date: Sat, 16 Feb 2013 02:39:27 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    9. So the Bible says it was Samuel and that Saul and Samuel even have a conversation and there is nothing in the text to lead us to believe it was an evil spirit, something you added to the story, so why would you deny that this is actually Samuel called up from the dead who is talking? You have nothing to stand on here or in Matt 17. I hope you can see that and not be willing to say the Bible got it wrong when it called what you are calling an evil demon spirit, Samuel.

    10. The truth is while men’s body are dead their spirits are very much alive and conscious Jesus spoke of Lazarus and the rich man that was dead and buried but wear still very much alive in the spirit …pls sir spirits don’t die only physical bodies die. Period.

    11. Bob,

      Now, let’s handle Matthew 17. You are saying I am wrong because it was a vision and therefore, didn’t really happen? Is that right? What the verse literally says that they aren’t tell tell anyone what they saw. That certainly reads differently and brings one to a different conclusion than the one you are making. Here is the problem. You are just pulling verses without actually doing exegesis of those verses. Jesus tells them not to tell anyone what they saw. He never said all it was was a mystical vision that didn’t really happen. That isn’t there at all! NASB translates it vision but that isn’t a good or even a literal translation. The disciples saw something real, they saw Moses and Elijah in action, even though they were dead.

    12. Matt, your handling of Mat 17 appears to me to be incorrect. It does not mean to “see” and even in the senses world with your eyes as light reflects of or an object like a chair or door.

      The word VISSION is the GREEK word horama and is used 12 TIMES in the New testiment. Before you assigne a meaning to this word yourself study each place where God has it used and it will define itself.

      Mat 17:9 Acts 7:31 Acts 9:10, 12 Acts 10:3, 17, 19 Acts 11:5 Acts 12:9 Acts 16:9. 10 Acts 18:9

      These are the 12 occurrence of the word VISION in the New Testament. Check them out for your self. Every time they are used it means a VISSION (ie revelation) From God to man.

      The certainly ‘SAW” something but it was God showing it to them not a “REAL” senses event..

      You are a minister and dont know about “vissions”? Doesnt God show you things by way of revelation?

      Good luck with your ministry


      Date: Sat, 16 Feb 2013 02:43:52 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    13. Bob,

      Thank you for continuing to engage in this discussion and thank you for doing some digging. There are several definitions for the word οραμα. The primary definition from BDAG (the most widely used lexicon among Greek scholars, students, seminaries, etc) is this “something that is viewed with ones eye” and they give Matthew 17:9 as an example of this definition. That something can be a physical thing. It can also be someone seeing a spiritual event like a vision.

      I will get back with you on a few further points but I want to point something out about a trend I am noticing in this conversation. You disagree with my interpretation and then jump to all sorts of conclusions about what I believe. For instance, I point out that a witch calls up the spirit of Samuel. Then you get all over me for bringing it up because it is an evil thing. Well, I never said it was a good thing….it was an example of something that happened that seems to refute your point. That is the only reason I brought it up. Not to condone it, etc. Then we disagree on whether or not Matthew 17 is a vision. So you say, “You are a minister and dont know about “vissions”? Doesnt God show you things by way of revelation?”

      How does my disagreement with your interpretation of Matthew 17 mean I don’t know about visions? Why not ask me if I know about visions and let me answer that? It is ironic that your comments were about my faulty assumptions but as we work these things out it seems that more and more of your own are coming to the surface. If you want to know what I believe or think I am dumb for not knowing about something…at least ask me. Fair enough? More on Matthew 17 later and if I am wrong and see that I am wrong, I will be the first to admit it.

    14. Dear Matt, I very much disagree with you about your concept that the DEAD are still ALIVE. How can a medium bring back a dead person if that dead person sthoughts have perished the day he died as told id in the versed that I sent to you about the state of death. What is she bring back? She is bringing back nothing. She is actually allowing a devil spirit to deceive Saul to thinking it is amuel. It works in 1 Sam28! and the outcome was that it was responsible for Sauls death. The spirit that the medium conjured up was nothing more than a familiar spirit, a devil spirit, a demon, an evil spirit . I was not the spirit of Samuel who died it is still dead awaiting the resurrection from the dead.

      This entire devil spirit world is made up of one third of the angels which Lucifer took with him when he tried to usurp the authority of God. These are the devil spirits and evil spirits which continue to plague man and deceive man into thinking that there’s life after death.

      Why would there need to be a resurrection if people are’s already alive after death. Why would there need to be a Christ if there is still life after death? I have heard all the theological responses to these questions and they just don’t add up. I prefer to believe the verses from Psalms and Ecclesiastes and other places teach me that when a person is dead his thoughts perish in that day and that he remains dead until the return of Christ.

      I do agree with you that Jesus witness to the fallen Angels which caused the flood of Genesis 6 but I do not believe that he did it from the grave. I believe he did it after his resurrection and before his first recorded appearances to the believers as recorded in the four Gospels.

      Your teaching regarding life after death parallels that of spiritualism.

      Re: Matthew 17

      All lexicons carry the theology of the editor. Many lexicons are based on secular works. A lexicon is a fancy word for dictionary. Take a moment to find out how dictionaries are produced. Definitions of words in dictionaries are produced by a cumulative all the places in phrases were those words are used in current books. Then from the study of all the places where these words are used a secular definition of the word is written and that is why in dictionaries you may have three or four meetings for a particular word. The first meeting is the most current taken from current novels and usages of words. The second meaning used to be the first meeting. I hope you get the idea how words and definitions in dictionaries are made. So what is my point to this dog and pony story?

      My point is this. You want to know a biblical definition of a word the first place you should look is in the Bible. Look at every place that word is used in Scripture. Derive your definition from how God uses it in the Bible. This is first and foremost! From there you may gather further light from how the words are used by other scholars and other lexicons. There is only one lexicon that I know of and that is EW Bullinger work which was done in the 1800s. Check it out, buy a copy and read his introduction it will help you in the understanding of biblical words.

      The word vision was used 12 times in the New Testament. In every occurrence God chose to use the word to represent a vision see by revelation. A good example would be Peter’s vision which he saw of a blanket let down from heaven filled with all kinds of unclean beasts and God told him to kill and eat. do you think for one second this was a real blanket and those are real animals?

      Check out all the occurrences that I gave you. Allow the word to speak without your previous theological doctrine clouding your thinking. Allow God to have a greater influence on your life by how he uses the words that all your secular previous teachers.

      I’ve been doing biblical research now over40 years. I rarely take the time to write letters like this or try to help someone who is so engaged in theological error. The reason I rarely take the time is because I learned early on that it is difficult for a Christian minister to change from error to truth and how so many ministers, Christian ministers, are more engaged engaged in their theology then they are engaged in actually seeking the truth. I feel sad for you. A young man, with a nice family, a nice position in a Christian church and still engaged in theology and tradition over truth.

      it is very possible to be deceived and to deceive others in this world. It is very possible to remain in a total deception throughout our whole lifetime, however, it is impossible to deceive God and someday we must both stand before him and give an account of every word that comes out of our mouth. I personally take this very seriously that someday I will need to give an account of what I have taught to others.

      Best regards Matt


      Date: Sat, 16 Feb 2013 12:41:08 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    15. Bob,

      I want you to know that truth is very important to me. I have had discussions on this blog in the past where I have changed my mind. I am sure and even hope it will happen again because I am not just seeking to confirm what I already believe but I am interested in the truth. So be patient with me 😉 Thank you for your patience and thank you for sharing your years of study. I appreciate that. Let’s unpack one thing at a time…it will be simpler to work through it that way. Let’s start with 1 Sam 28. Can you help me understand your interpretation of 1 Sam 28? You wrote,

      “She is actually allowing a devil spirit to deceive Saul to thinking it is Samuel. It works in 1 Sam28! and the outcome was that it was responsible for Sauls death. The spirit that the medium conjured up was nothing more than a familiar spirit, a devil spirit, a demon, an evil spirit . I was not the spirit of Samuel who died it is still dead awaiting the resurrection from the dead. ”

      Help me understand how you get that from 1 Sam 28. Where does it say that? The simple reading of the text says over and over that this IS Samuel, that Samuel even prophesied to Saul and, what is more, that the spirit of Samuel spoke the truth. Read what Samuel tells Saul in 28:16-19 and tell me if that sounds like a deceiving, evil spirit. I really don’t see how you can come away from reading that chapter saying this is anything but the spirit of Samuel, unless you are saying the writer of these verses was himself confused. How do you account for how straight forward the account is, if in fact, as you say, the account in scripture actually got it wrong? The only way I can think of that someone can come to your conclusion is if you make up your mind first that spirits just don’t do that and then try to fit this chapter into your preconceived ideas…but that isn’t good exegesis. We have to be concerned about what these verses actually mean in their context and what actually happened…to say that it really means something that it gives no clue about, doesn’t fit the context, and just isn’t there is not good Bible study…I would hope that after all your years of study you could agree with me on that.

    16. Thanks for the nice note, Mat,

      I did not mean to “pull rank” by suggesting I was any more along the way of Bible study than anyone else. I have always had a GREAT desire to know the truth and to study with the sole purpose of being able to rightly divide the word of truth. Over the years I spent a considerable amount of time studying the field of discerning spirits and so when I talk about familiar spirits, deceiving spirits and other things it’s not just the top my head.

      I will take another very thoughtful look at first Samuel 28 and reconsider my password be certain I have a clear understanding of what I’m talking about. If I happen to come up with anything clear and simple I will do so.

      It would be nice to know what sort of tools that you have at your disposal. What I mean by this is do you have access to Greek texts, concordances and multi-translations of the old and New Testament? Do you have a computer-driven software program that allows you to do complicated searches of the old and New Testament? if you are serious about studying you will need to set aside all, all without exception, your commentaries. Commentaries serve very little purpose to the to the true Bible student who was searching for genuine answers.

      In my early days of study I exclusively look everything up in books one word at a time wrote down what my findings were and then peruse my way through the Scriptures to verify what I have found.

      I highly recommend a free, down loadable software package called on a line Bible. It allows you to do powerful searches of both Hebrew and Greek and English words. It is easy to use as replaced much of my hardbound Greek and Hebrew texts.

      Once again, after I reconsider for Samuel 28 I will get back to you. In the meantime, if you have a concordance available to you such as Strong’s or Young’s I highly recommend you look up every place in the Old Testament where the word “familiar” is used. It should always be attached to the words spirit or spirits.. This would be a good place begin your understanding of what familiar spirits are and will set a framework for you to understand what is written first Samuel chapter 28. You may find that the following definition for familiar spirits might assist you but allow the word speak for itself see if the definition I gave you will fit into every occurrence of the word familiar spirits in the old test.

      Simply, a familiar spirit is a particular kind of devil spirit that possesses a medium, sometimes you for two is a clairvoyant, to impersonate dead people. Depending upon how open the medium is they will hear voices, they will see visions and at times they will be allowed to bring into the senses realm a material called ectoplasm.

      Once again I will get back you, if you’re still interested, after I reviewed for Sam and 28 again and again.

      Best regards


      Date: Sat, 16 Feb 2013 21:00:09 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    17. Thank you for your kind words brother. I really appreciate it and the spirit in which it was said. I know we are on the same side here…two guys in search of the truth. That is important to be reminded of. I have a whole pile of tools available to me include multiple Greek texts, multiple lexicons, TDNT, BDAG, UBS 1, 3 & 4, NA27, and a ton of textual criticism resources. I have a variety of commentaries but those are only to be used in a secondary way. I love what Fred Craddock (I think is who said it) said about the use of commentaries…you don’t just rush to them, instead you study it for yourself and then, when you do read them, you are sitting at a table of equals rather than just being spoonfed other guys’ opinions with any evaluation.

      This may be of help to you, a resource here on the blog – https://mattdabbs.wordpress.com/study-tools/study-tools/

      And this – https://mattdabbs.wordpress.com/study-tools/textual-study-tools/

      Hope you find that helpful in your study. Have a good night.


    18. Matt, StepONE:

      Here are the RULES I constantly keep in my mind when I am studying the bible!!! CUT and paste them into your word processor and print them out so you can check your own work. Some of these rules will be obvious to you, some will be new and some may need further illucidation. Just ask if you dont understand something.


      There are two reasons people ask questions. 1) People genuinely want an answer! I always take time to help if I can 2) People want to “fight” or try to substantiate their error. I do not answer these questions because they are NOT seeking an answer

      MOST of type 2 questions arise from people previous teaching. These teachings often are rooted in their youth and they have never questioned them honestly or done their own homework. in my classes, when my students ask a few questions here is what I say to them:

      “Is this question a result of your own hours and hours of biblical study and is a conclusion that you have come to on your own or is this something that someone else’s taught you and you have accepted it without question. if it is a question as a result of your own hard work and put your research in writing and send it to me and I will genuinely consider what you have to say.”

      Let me know if you have any additions , deletions or changes. BE SURE TO INCLUDE THE REASON!!!!

      RULES TO Study BY:

      All Scripture interprets itself:

      1. In the verse:

      a. Right where it is written.

      b. A word of words must be interpreted according to Biblical usage.

      c. The words must be in harmony with the verse as well as with all the scriptures relating to the subject.

      d. Scripture build-up; narrative development.

      2. In the context.

      3. Used before.

      Biblical truths we must adhere to as workmen:

      1. Get “to whom” correct – administrations.

      2. Difficult verse must be understood in light of the clear verses.

      3. Interpretation and application are always with respect to whom it is addressed.

      Seven steps to Biblical accuracy:

      1. The individual word must be understood.

      2. The words must fit in the verse.

      3. The verse must fit with the immediate context.

      4. The immediate context must flow with the remote context.

      5. The words must be understood in light of to whom it is written.

      6. The words must be understood in light of orientalisms, customs, and mannerisms.

      7. The words must be understood in light of the figures of speech.

      Reading for understanding:

      Ask yourself, “What is this verse saying?” To better understand what it is saying, ask yourself five other questions.

      1. What is it not saying?

      2. What is the opposite of what it is saying?

      3. What is unusual about the way in which it is said?

      4. What did it mean to the first-century believers?

      5. What does it mean to the believers of today?

      if these basic keys are agreeable with you it will give us a foundation to look at any verse in the Bible.

      Best regards


      Date: Sun, 17 Feb 2013 02:45:57 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    19. Hi Matt,

      I have been reading and rereading first Samuel 28 for days now. It appears to me that the woman from Endor, the medium, had allowed her mind to be under the control of a familiar spirit(s) which spoke through her mouth thus impersonating Samuel through the medium. Once the evil spirit was engaged with the woman the familiar spirit(s) spoke through the medium, the woman, and deceived Saul’s to thinking that it was Samuel. Verses 15 through 19 must be understood in light of this context of a woman possessed by a familiar spirit(s). The familiar spirit(s) was speaking through the mouth of the medium, the woman. Familiar spirits are a particular type of devil spirit that impersonate dead people through a medium.

      The greater question here is: is there life after death? In other words when a person dies is he still alive in some other form other than his body. This question often arises amongst Christians and there are certainly groups on both sides of the question. The real question is what does the word say?

      In the beginning man was FORMED, MADE AND CREATED, three parts

      Body: formed from the dust of the ground.

      Soul: God breathed into Adam the breath of life he BECAME a living soul.

      Spirit: God created man in his own image in the image of God. God image is spirit.

      A study of the first three chapters of Genesis clearly lays out that man was body soul and spirit. The commandment given to Adam in the garden was that in THE DAY that he ate of the fruit of the tree he would SURLEY die. There were no if’s and’s or but’s. In Genesis chapter 3 man eats of the fruit and that very day Adam dies. The question is what PART of man died that day? The spirit died and without the spirit the body and soul parts of man were as good as dead, just as if a man was bitten by a cobra, he is a walking dead man. 900+ years later Adam’s body and soul finally died. It was the SPIRIT in man that gave him life, just as today it is the New Birth Spirit that gives us life, eternal life.

      1John 5:10-13

      He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: [then manifestation of the spirit,1Cor12:3,7]

      …. And this is the record [WITNESS], that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life,

      Did you know that from the very beginning God was teaching man that redemption would require the shedding of blood and a blood sacrifice. If you recall, Adam and Eve tried to cover themselves leaves; however, God covered them with skins, animal skins. That was the first blood sacrifice mentioned in the Bible. In Leviticus says that the life of the flesh is in the blood.

      Leviticus 17:1

      For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.

      When Jesus Christ died on the cross he shed his blood for us. It was the payment for our sin and with the shedding of his blood his soul life was also drained and he took his “last breath”. Therefore when Jesus was in the grave he was dead. It was in his resurrected body that he preached and to the disobedient spirits of Genesis chapter 6.

      1Peter 3:18,19

      ..being put to death in the flesh, but made alive by the spirit: by which [the resurrected body that was dead and made alive] also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison;

    20. Bob,

      Your opening paragraph really baffles me,

      “I have been reading and rereading first Samuel 28 for days now. It appears to me that the woman from Endor, the medium, had allowed her mind to be under the control of a familiar spirit(s) which spoke through her mouth thus impersonating Samuel through the medium. Once the evil spirit was engaged with the woman the familiar spirit(s) spoke through the medium, the woman, and deceived Saul’s to thinking that it was Samuel. Verses 15 through 19 must be understood in light of this context of a woman possessed by a familiar spirit(s). The familiar spirit(s) was speaking through the mouth of the medium, the woman. Familiar spirits are a particular type of devil spirit that impersonate dead people through a medium.”

      I just don’t see how that is the natural, simplest, etc reading of the text at all. I think your systematic theology is greatly influencing your view of this passage. Help me see through this. If I am reading you write, the writer of 1 Samuel got this wrong? Why is there no explanation of all of this? What is more, you have gotten on to me for making assumptions but your view here is full of assumptions. The Bible doesn’t say anything except that this was Samuel, Samuel prophesied to Saul and the prophesy came true. I just don’t see how you can read it any other way unless you make up your mind that that is not possible before you read the text and then try to fit or squeeze the text into your preconceived view. Help explain to me how good exegesis leads to the view you just put forth. I am missing it.

    21. Yes Bob…I read it all. What you are doing here is called eisegesis, not exegesis. From wikipedia,

      eisegesis is “the process of interpreting a text or portion of text in such a way that it introduces one’s own presuppositions, agendas, and/or biases into and onto the text. The act is often used to “prove” a pre-held point of concern to the reader and to provide him or her with confirmation bias in accordance with his or her pre-held agenda. Eisegesis is best understood when contrasted with exegesis. While exegesis draws out the meaning from a text in accordance with the context and discover-able meaning of its author, eisegesis occurs when a reader imposes his or her interpretation into and onto the text. As a result, exegesis tends to be objective when employed effectively while eisegesis is regarded as highly subjective.”

      I hope that puts into perspective what you are doing with the text of 1 Samuel 28.

    22. Matt, You are mistaken and it would be fair to say that your evaluation of my handling of the word could be best expressed as eisegesis. Your assumptions about my biblical training lack substance and basis.

      my presumptions are: 1) The original “god breathed” word was perfect and without error or contradictions. 2) All apparent contradictions are either in the translation or in a persons understanding

      It is apparent that you have neither studied nor considered the Word I have shared in my emails.

      Why would there need to be a resurrection from the dead if people are already alive after death? Why would Christ need to return to gather together the believers if they are already with him?

      The same deceiving spirit that fooled Saul to believing Samual was alive after death is pulling the wool over your eyes also. Your condition today is same Saul faced centuries ago.

      Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness. And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some.

      The one GREAT REQUIREMENT of the Workman is to Rightly DIVIDE THE WORD. It is false to think that I have preconceived doctrines that govern my dividing of the word. I find that thought repugnant! and offensive. I may be mistaken in my attempts to divide the word as a workman but I am not bound by traditional misinterpretations of doctrines to come to a agreeable conclusion.

      You have offered NO supporting scripture for your proof of life after death. Perhaps you can find a verse that clearly indicates that after a person death he is still in a conscious state.

      You SAID you read what I sent you.

      HOW DO you explain these clear verses ? Psalm 6:5; 146:6 Ecclesiastes 9:5,610

      Without question they all CLEARLY state that in DEATH there is NO consciousness.

      You could NOT have HONESTLY studied these verses! Come on Matt… be honest… Did you read them?? Did you think about them?? DID you look at the Hebrew words? Did you look up in the bible the places where each of these Hebrew words are used, how they are used before you came to your conclusion?

      I teach at the state prison a biblical studies class. Some questions are allowed but when they ask I MAKE them think.

      Is this question from: 1) a previous teaching you received in church that you never checkout on your own or 2) did this question arise from your OWN study..

      Question 1’s are not allowed in my class. Questions 2’s are always answered

      If you havent done your HOMEWORK you havent earned the right to have an opinion.

      I have done my homework!! I have studied and rechecked my work MANY times. I have CONSIDERED the possibility of life after death and when the dust settled, when all the hebrew words and many others related words referencing to the dead were check in the BIBLE it all pointed to the SAME conclusion, THAT THE DEAD are DEAD and stay dead until the resurrection FROM among the dead.

      God does NOT give his WORD to LAZY people! DO your HOMEWORK! It is apparent that you havent done your HOMEWORK!


      Date: Tue, 26 Feb 2013 20:23:50 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    23. Bob,

      What assumptions did I make about your biblical training? I said nothing about your biblical training. I am describing what I see you doing in your interpretation. You still haven’t told me where in 1 Sam 28 you get your conclusions from. Exegesis is trying to interpret what the original author meant in context to his original audience. The reason I am saying you are doing esiegesis with 1 Sam 28 is that I don’t see in any way how solid exegesis of that singular passage of scripture yields the results you have come up with. It is obvious you have done a ton of study here. I haven’t ever questioned that.

      Second, I have been working on my response. I just haven’t shared it with you yet. So instead of making all kinds of assumptions about how I haven’t done my HOMEWORK, give me room to share my thoughts, please. If you don’t want to do that then I have plenty more to say on this subject but I am not sure if you are the best person to share my thoughts with because it seems to just turn into personal attacks that are fogging up the discussion. If you can be patient and listen to my response, please do. If you don’t want to hear it then why don’t we just end this discussion now.

      Third, can you help me understand why the need for the WORDS IN CAPS? Have I hurt you? Is there a need to yell? There really isn’t any way forward in this conversation if you are going to take that approach. What is more, you continue to make assumptions about me. Like these,

      “Did you know that one of the the reasons given in scripture for Sauls death is because he asked guidance from a familiar spirit in 1Sam 28 ???? WOW that is NOT a good example, did you read the whole chapter of 1 Sam 28 before you wrote me????”

      “I wont even bother trying to explain to you what is going on in Revelations as you are, so far, have not proved to me you can handle the milk of the word, the meat will make you sick!”

      “Where did you go to school? Are you ordained? OMG!!”

      “OH well, my guess you are done with me and would much rather hold on to your traditional Errors. Too bad, I sense you have the commitment and willingness to serve God but are trapped in many traditional lies with no way out.”

      “You are a minister and dont know about “vissions”? Doesnt God show you things by way of revelation?”

      “It is apparent that you have neither studied nor considered the Word I have shared in my emails.”

      “If you havent done your HOMEWORK you havent earned the right to have an opinion
      God does NOT give his WORD to LAZY people! DO your HOMEWORK! It is apparent that you havent done your HOMEWORK!”

      So what I gather there is that I am lazy, ignorant, don’t care to study…haven’t really studied, have a poor or no education, shouldn’t be ordained because I don’t agree with you and for all the above reasons, don’t know about visions in scripture, can’t understand a single verse in Revelation, aren’t ready for meat…I just want you to hear yourself for a second and ask if this is really the correct attitude in which to proceed.

    24. Matt, I would very much like to read your understanding of the clear verses listed below and how they then can be harmonized with the state of Jesus while he was in the grave.

      Time is not nearly as important as a honest and careful presentation of the Word.

      I am sure we both are engaged in our daily responsibilities of the ministry and work.



      Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2013 15:58:17 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    25. Just wanted to say I won’t be able to get back with you until next week. I have a hugely busy weekend ahead and have too much to get done to spend much time on this until middle of next week.

    26. Thanks, keep working on it..

      I taught at the prison last night on the topic of BODY, SOUL and SPIRIT from Genesis 1,2 3, about how Adam and Eve were originally BODY, SOUL AND SPIRIT and how when they sinned that very DAY they died (Gen 2:16,17). Although their BODY and SOUL continued 900+ years that very DAY they lost their connection with God when their SPIRIT died. Which made them “dead men walking”…

      What a great night of truth and understanding.

      Memory is a FUNCTION of the Body not the SOUL and not the SPIRIT, that is why the Scripture says that the dead KNOW NOTHING. They are in a continuous state of “no functioning thought process” until the resurrection(s)

      Memories are stored in the brain and when the brain dies so do the memories. If memory was stored in the SOUL life of man then these memories would be passed down to the progeny through the seed (sperm) because the soul life is passed down through the seed (sperm) of mankind.

      All this stuff is in Genesis and also established in many other parts of scripture..

      I am interested in reading your working and interpretation of the verses I sent you regarding the continuous state of death. Any ideas you come up with will have to flow in harmony with those verses and not at cross purposes or in contradiction of those verses that I previously sent to you.

      best regards,


      PS Next week I will teach the DAY that Jesus Christ died, HOW HE, Jesus, was the True passover lamb how he died at the exact time that all Israel was sacraficing their Passovers lambs, about 3PM on the 14th of Nisan, which was a WEDNESDAY… burred shortly before 6PM (sunset) spent 3 days and 3 nights in the grave (72 hours) and was raised from among the dead shortly before sunset (6PM) on the weekly Sabbath (Saturday) and then he went and witnessed to the imprisoned spirits mentioned in Peter(s) epistles… The early sightings were on the 1st day of the week (Sunday) but he had already been resurrected for about 6 hours….

      hope this doesn’t shatter too many of your traditions…… personally, traditions are not the standard for truth, the Word is Truth…..

      Date: Wed, 6 Mar 2013 16:28:21 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    27. I have been ridiculous busy so I haven’t completely finished my study on this. Hopefully next week I can have something more concrete for you.

    28. Matt, Thanks for the note, I have been working on one of the most significant and awesome events in Christ’s life..

      The Transfiguration.

      WOW Far beyond what your mama taught you!!

      best regards,


      Date: Thu, 14 Mar 2013 19:20:34 +0000 To: saaint@hotmail.com

    29. Bob,

      I believe you were a little harsh with Matt. I would like to encourage you to make amends. Lean on Jesus, and be forever filled with the Holy Spirit. beware how knowledge puffs up (leads to pride). And rather know Him, this same Jesus in whom your placed your full confidence into. May the fullness of His love and grace flow through you like mighty river. Know this also, I don’t discount your studies, I’m thankful for every moment you’ve spent reading God’s word. And I would encourage you to never stop seeking to know the truth. But remember also all that studying time can be worthless, if His presence doesn’t reflect through us when we interact with others. Forgive me, for like Paul I too am a chief among sinners and don’t even count myself worthy to rebuke my fellow brothers in Christ. Yet my rebuke is not to tear down, but to encourage you to read, and above all seek the Master’s face! To long and hunger for the Father’s presence, for He will gladly show you mighty things! Listen to the Holy Spirit, He is your teacher. Let Him flow through you in your words and actions. His work is the power of God through His church. He will reveal more to you than you could ever find on your own for He knows the very heart of the Father, and He will empower you to do great and mighty things. Even be patient with those who haven’t put the time in that you have. Love them. That’s what you are called to above all else. If you aren’t being patient you aren’t bearing His fruit. Be fruitful. It’s His deal. So, let Him do it. For apart from the vine we can do nothing. Apart from Him our words have no power, and our actions have no power. So, abide therefore. “And this is how all men will know that you are My disciples; if you have love one for another.” You are His disciple Bob, and so is Matt. Love him, for He too was bought at a price.

      In love,


    30. Bob,

      I have compiled a large list of verses that I am working through. I will probably tackle this in a new post rather than try to sort through all the threads of comments on this one.

    31. My problem with your theory of JESUS doing nothing for three days in the grave is that you assume the Living GOD, JESUS, could die, and lie dormant during that time, while on the other hand you use verses from Enoch to demonstrate the spirits of fallen angels where in the grave (alive,) waiting for judgment. why do you believe the fallen spirits remained alive in the grave, but you believe the author of life did not (John 1)? Death for JESUS only signifies a separation from the physical body HE used, not the death of HIS Spirit. Spirits don’t die! Otherwise we could destroy demons, instead of just casting them out.

    32. Some thoughts related to the comment,

      1. If God is omnipotent, then he is perfectly capable of dormancy for any period(s) of time if that is what he chooses. If that is what was done, he has the right and the ability to do so.

      2. Fallen angels can be cast down to hell and bound in chains awaiting judgment, but that does not necessarily speak as to whether they are conscious in that state. Maybe those angels are fully conscious, or subdued, or in stasis, and maybe some are in different states than others. Scripture does not specify and God is powerful enough to do as he decides is best.

      3. Do you have a scripture that states that “Spirits don’t die?” I can’t think of one to that effect, but on the other hand I can think of numerous prophesies regarding those that we consider “fallen angels” (spirits) giving great detail as to how they will die, utterly, even reduced to ash and to be no more, in the judgment. Even if this meant that the mechanic was to change spirit to flesh and then obliterate the flesh, it’s a moot point, because that which is currently “spirit” can be effectively destroyed just the same.

      4. Your (or my) personal inability to destroy demons is not a good measure or indication as to whether God can destroy demons. A mosquito is not able to kill me, but it’s inability to slay me in mortal combat is not a good indicator that I am immortal.

      5. Also … “We” don’t cast out demons. God’s spirit casts out the demons. Otherwise, perhaps some might play along, or have their own reasons for various compliances, but the devils don’t have to listen to us if they aren’t playing that game. If we as saints do cast out devils in Christ’s name, it’s not actually because of us. There’s a reason we have stories (and biblical accounts) of attempted exorcisms gone wrong.

    33. Jesus on three days in the grave went to the bounded spirits and preached a second chance of repentance so that by the blood of Jesus they would be forgiven their sins and get back to heaven with jesus

  1. The book of Enoch is quoted liberally in the New Testament. When Jude warns that God will come with ten thousands of his saints he had to be quoting Enoch. He goes on as does Peter to warn about the “sporting” and “feasting” which does not mean playing football.

    The book of Enoch and the story told in at least three dozen documents I have posted define the reason why judgment will fall on those who do any ritual which diminishes giving heed (Paul’s worship word) to the Word of God: what one does as a disciple in a school.

    You would probably bump me if I told you what they were doing which caused a beyond redemption fall into the land of the Cainites

    Isaiah 30 even more forcefully in the LXX defines the FOR WHOM and the MARKS of God driving His enemies into the word symbolic of hell.

  2. If while in the grave” Jesus preached to these fallen angels a message of triumph and judgment— and the finality of their own defeat,” would this not go contrary to scriptures like Eccl.9:5, Psalm88, Psalm146:4,etc.?

    1. Keith,

      Sorry for being so long in getting back with you. Interpretation takes into considering genre and there is a lot of hyperbole in the passages you are citing. In fact, this interpretation goes along very nicely with Psalm 146:4. If the first two you mention are interpreted literally, which they shouldn’t be (rather as poetry using hyperbole) then it would also contradict many other scriptures. But when you take into account the literary tools being employed there is no inconsistency here at all.

      Great question.

  3. Death was the final enemy,Jesus had to face it and conqer.Thank you for your message that He preached in the grave.amen.

  4. Am a pastor in cameroon Africa.i read your article with a lot of curiosity,and there are somany questions on my mind that i will need clearifications for.why did you choose to use books that are not canonical?i mean books that are in the regular bible or amongst the unversally approved 66 books Bible?dont you think your arguments based on an unpopular book would cast confusion on young converts or yet to be christians and will further harden their hearts?i recommend you answer that same question on ”what did Jesus do in the grave?” using only books from the regular Bible and it will help most of us..my adress is focha@gloriousworldministries.org,my number is +23776687482.thanks for understanding and God bless you

    1. Focha,

      I appreciate and share your passion for the canonical books of the New Testament. I also appreciate your question. It is a very good question and I addressed it briefly in the post,

      “So, while we would normally not give Enoch much thought or weight, Peter deemed it fit in this instance through inspiration and so in this instance we can gain insight from Enoch and Peter on these matters.”

      If Peter didn’t have a problem referencing Enoch (which is what it appears he is doing here) then I also don’t have a problem referencing Enoch but only to the extent inspired writers (of canonical books) were led to reference them. Peter is not alone in this, as Ken mentions in the second comment on this post. Paul also referred to uninspired, even pagan, writers on several occasions. He was certainly not wrong to do so.

      So my answer to your question is I am only willing to give those books any credence as the New Testament writers did. I wouldn’t put much stock in very much of the rest of what books like Enoch have to say.

  5. I agree with Focha. While both Peter and Jude quote from the book of Enoch, I wouldn’t quote anything other than what is already included in the canonical scriptures. Yes it’s true that Paul also quoted from others in order to connect with his audience. When I preach, I sometimes quote from a wide variety of sources that are certainly not Christian, but I always preface those quotes with “I don’t agree with everything ________ says…”
    Anyway, I largely agreed with everything else you had to say and I think it could be done without quoting from 1 Enoch or anything else other than the 66 books found in the Word of God.

  6. If you use known books of the Bible to valid an unknown and not widely read like the Bible why not just stick to the Bible? If we would just follow what was already given to us. Trust me you wont have time to find another book to add to the list. Read acts 2:38 and Revelations the last chapter. I pray for your salvation. Salvation according to Acts 2:38 will help

  7. TM…thanks for your concern. I should mention that I could have just left Enoch out of this and made the same point from 2 Peter 2:4-5 & Jude 6 and made the same point. I will eventually edit this post to reflect that. So the point is not valid because of what Enoch said. The point is valid because of what we read in 1 Peter, 2 Peter and Jude. Hope that helps.

  8. I appreciate your explanation on the subject matter I would aslo do some studies and probably give my response later however it is Interesting to see the arguments about the book of Enoch here. I have read the book of Enoch more than 3 times and I am yet to see what contradicts the bible in that book. Paul quoting a pagan book is not synonymous to Peter or Jude quoting the book of Enoch. If you understand the use of languages Paul quoted pagan books to confront the pagans that some writings in their books also support his points. However Peter and Jude quoted the book of Enoch just as Paul or Peter would quote the Psalms.

    I have been researching on Eschatology for some months now and I would say I haven’t found a book that explains better what happens to the soul of man when he dies than the book of Enoch. What most Christians claim about those who die are not only wrong but misleading. Saying people go to heaven when they die is not true because when you ask those who say this about Resurrection of the saints they look very foolish. How can I be in heaven and then come out of the grave on the last day? Is heaven in the grave?

    In line with Jesus’ parable of Lazarus and the rich man, the book of Enoch explained what happens to men when they die It talked about the separation between the souls of the righteous and the wicked, it talked about the rest the souls of the righteous experience and the torment of the souls of the wicked. These were the exact description of what Jesus said about Lazarus and the rich man.

    It sounds hypocritical to me when Christians reject the book of Enoch which as far as I know is inspired and accept books such as “left behind” that teaches the rapture of the saints away from tribulation. And when you read the bible and the “controversial” book of Enoch you would see that nobody is getting raptured away from tribulation just as Jesus also taught.

    1. As far as preaching to the fallen spirits, (demons) I doubt Jesus wasted time preaching to them for they already know of their impending punishment. Remember the demoniac who was possessed by the legion of demons. They recognized Jesus immediately and ran to Him and fell at His feet saying, “what have we to do with the Jesus, Son of the Most High God, have you come to torment us before the time?” They were and are fully aware of their impending judgement, and also of who Jesus is as God the Son. So why the need to preach to them or to those whose judgement is sealed? What I gather, from Lazarus is that when we die… we don’t just cease to exist… or stop existing… as some one mentioned earlier. Neither Lazarus nor the rich man ceased existing; though their bodies did. No, their souls left their bodies behind and each went to his own place according to his works while he was alive. Lazarus was comforted in Abraham’s bosom while the rich man to a flaming place of torment. Abraham was a man of faith in God. His faith was not dead but made alive and manifested through his works. Yet it was not his works that saved him but his faith, his works were just the outward manifestation of his faith. The same applies to Noah who believed God words and built the ark, and we could list many other examples just as the book of Hebrews did. If the rich man had of had faith in God, I have no doubt he would have gone to Abraham’s bosom too. Instead he realized that his brothers were living the same kind of life he had been living and begged father Abraham to send Lazarus to go and preach to his five brothers so that they would not earn the same fate. Abraham’s response was, “they have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them.”…”No, father Abraham… they will believe if one rose from the dead… “If they will not hear Moses and the prophets neither will they believe, though one rose from the dead.”

      In Abraham’s last phrase, Jesus refers to himself as he tells this story. One example of this is also realized when Jesus hung on the cross. The pharisees mocked Him saying, “if you are really the son of God, come down off that cross and we will believe.” But they were lying hypocrites! Which is the greater miracle? To come down off the cross in that moment; or to allow them to kill Him, take away the sin of the world, and raise from the dead three days later? The pharisees who said this were speaking in the same spirit as Satan who said when He was hungry, “If you really are the Son of God make these stones bread…”

      My point is this, the death of the body is not the end all be all of the soul housed inside. This body in which we now live is a tent compared to the immortal body we will inherit at the Resurrection. A tent is temporary compared to a temple; and different in many ways. And though the temple built with hands did not last, the new temple (new bodies made without hands) we will inherit will last forever and we will be like Him. Yet in the mean time, between the death of the body and the receiving of our new body at the Resurrection, we must look carefully at Jesus’ words about Lazarus and the rich man. We must carefully evaluate the weight of authority of the One who spoke them and soberly inspect where we place our faith and ask, “does my faith manifest itself?” or do I just say I believe… and live how ever I want?

      When Jesus told the thief on the cross, “..Today you will be with me in paradise.” Was he referring to heaven; or was He referring to Abraham’s bosom? We know he told Mary not to touch Him when she saw him outside thee tomb… “for I have not yet ascended.”

      I have not read the book of Enoch though I believe after reading this forum it would be interesting to do so. My assumption has been that, Jesus preached the good news to those men and women in Abraham’s bosom and to those in torment.. (for He came to set the captives free). Yet, like many I have as many questions as I do answers, such as; what about the mount of transfiguration? Did Moses and Elijah come from heaven or Abraham’s bosom? Is there a difference/ or are they the same? Perhaps, I won’t know until they day I am with Jesus. I believe in that Day He will perfect my knowledge in all things. I believe that I will be glad to know the answers to the questions I have but all of those answers won’t hold a candle to the Joy I will have in kissing my Savior’s hands and feet. To hug Him and smell His fragrance as one does when they hug and kiss those they love. I long for that D
      ay and the joy that will be mine to live and reign with Him forever.

    2. I think you missed the point. People assume preaching would be to be evangelistic. There is a word in Greek for preaching the good news. That is not the word used here. Here it is about proclamation. Of what? Victory over them. That make more sense now?

    3. Hi Matt,
      Still busy? I hope things are well with you…

      Here is a translation of ISAIAH 8:19-20 (New Century Version)

      IS 8:19,20
      Some people say, “Ask the mediums and fortune-tellers, who whisper and mutter, what to do.” But I tell you that people should ask their God for help.

      Why should people who are still alive ask something from the dead? You should follow the teachings and the agreement with the Lord.

      The mediums and fortune-tellers do not speak the word of the Lord, so their words are worth nothing.

      This is worth reading and considering that the DEAD are DEAD and Not ALIVE?

    4. why would he preach or proclaim to them since they already know who He is and know about the torment that is to come as seen earlier with the demoniac? Wouldn’t it make more sense, that He went to proclaim the good news to those who had fallen asleep prior to His death and Resurrection? Like Samuel. You referenced only 1 Peter 3:18-20 in your original post, but what about the rest of the surrounding verses? You mentioned exegesis, which would require the whole context. Peter had been expounding on suffering for doing what is right.

      “17 For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil. 18 For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit. 19 After being made alive,[d] he went and made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits— 20 to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, 21 and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also—not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a clear conscience toward God.[e] It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and is at God’s right hand—with angels, authorities and powers in submission to him.”

      Now when we come to verses 19b-12a we read “He…made proclamation to the imprisoned spirits- to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water, 21 and this water symbolizes baptism that now saves you also…”

      Peter is talking about the wicked people who died in the flood. God waited patiently (100 years) while Noah built the ark, but those people wouldn’t listen to God’s warning and they ALL died. Wouldn’t it make more sense that Jesus Christ went down to “make proclamation” to the spirits of those people instead of to demons? For hell was not made for man but for Satan and his demons. Yet people do go to hell as we saw with the rich man and Lazarus. This is unfortunate, but its true.

      You also mentioned 1 Peter 2:4-5, “4 For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell,[a] putting them in chains of darkness[b] to be held for judgment; 5 if he did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah, a preacher of righteousness, and seven others;”

      Again Peter is talking about the flood destroying ungodly people.Did Jesus not die for sinners? Why then would He waste time making proclamation to devils who already full realize their punishment and its due? The only reason Peter even mentions these fallen angels is to prove his point from the beginning of the chapter which says,

      “2 But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves. 2 Many will follow their depraved conduct and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. 3 In their greed these teachers will exploit you with fabricated stories. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping. 4 For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell,[a] putting them in chains of darkness[b] to be held for judgment; 5….

      I would warn you to pay more attention to the first 3 verses than the 4th one. Your exegesis makes no sense and as a believing brother I encourage you to read further and seek the Holy Spirit’s help in understanding all this. For He is our promised Helper who seals us til the day of redemption. He will teach you all things. Lastly, I charge you, as a fellow brother, to be careful not to take God’s word and draw points and conclusions; forcing them to fit so that your theology makes sense or to prove points that really don’t matter. Fallacy is sure to prove itself when you do, and render you foolish and your credibility before men shattered. It is my sincere prayer that you are not teaching this to others, for as you know teachers will be judged more severely than others. If you have though, there is hope. Repent. Confess, and be forgiven. For if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

  9. Did Jesus equally preached to the departed souls that were in Hades?If yes, What happened to them that heard his preaching.

  10. I really enjoyed the conversation. Thanks for opening your hearts to critical study from the Word of God.

  11. i think there is no point of argument here we are all SAVE BY CHRIST NO MATTER WHAT so why argue it is pride a sin of that put two of you into quarrel BE SIMPLE AND OBEY GODS COMMANDMENT for GOD IS LOVE peace be with you …..

  12. Yow, this in a long running thread.

    … touching on that question of “the spirit of Samuel” that came up, would it interest anyone to know that the idea that “it really was Samuel” is a relatively new (recent) interpretation? King James, John Calvin, and Martin Luther all concurred (although with different stated reasons) that the familiar spirit that was raised most certainly was *not* Samuel, but a demonic imposter.

    I could show the king’s reasoning with an excerpt from his “Daemonologie” (available upon request) and the other parts can be found with the typical commentaries that are included with E-sword (also available upon request).

    1. Hi Andrew, I think you are “mistaken” BUT on the right tract..

      The idea is NOT new, it is as OLD as the first COMMAND God gave to Adam and Eve..

      Genesis 2:16,17
      And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

      The IDEA is as OLD as the FIRST great Lie ever told to Eve:

      Genesis 3:4
      And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

      The same lie is being told by Satan and his associates today that when a man dies he “really” isnt dead; he is some how (or somewhere) still alive..

      Psalms speaks clearly about the state and nature of death:

      Ps 146:4
      His breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day his thoughts perish.

      pat, I suggest you not quote and read the fleeting thoughts of great men in the past unless they written about in the scripture.

      2 Timothy 3:16,17
      All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable
      doctrine, [how to believe rightly]
      reproof, ([reprove you when you are not believing rightly
      correction, [how to get back to right believing

      for[which is] instruction in righteousness:

      That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

    2. You might want to double check what it was that King James, Martin Luther, and John Calvin agreed upon…

      From one of the characters in Daemonologie (by King James):

      EPI: Yet if ye will mark the words of the text, ye will find clearly, that Saul saw the apparition: for giving you that Saul was in an other Chamber, at the making of the circles and conjurations, needful for that purpose (as none of that craft will permit any others to behold at that time) yet it is evident by the text, that how some that once that unclean spirit was fully risen, she called in upon Saul.

      For it is said in the text, that Saul knew him to be Samuel, which could not have been, by the hearing tell only of an old man with an mantle since there was many more old men dead in Israel nor Samuel: and the common wear of that whole Country was mantles. As to the next, that it was not the spirit of Samuel, I grant, In the proving whereof ye nee not to insist, since all Christians of whatsoever Religion agrees upon that: and none but either mere ignorants, or Necromancers or Witches doubt thereof.

      And that the Devil is permitted at sometimes to put himself in the likeness of the Saints, it is plain in the Scriptures, where it is said, that (2) Satan can transform himself into an Angel of light.

      … all of those people I mentioned agreed that it could not have been the actual Samuel. That is, the “it was really Samuel” concept hadn’t yet gained strength by the 17th century.

      Of those three, Martin Luther is on the record (condemned by Sir Thomas Moore himself) that the dead soul lies senseless ’till judgment day, and John Calvin choose the opposing side, attacking the Anabaptists with his Psychopannacia against soul sleep. I cannot find a definitive statement from King James one way or another, but portions like this from his book gives one reason to consider why it is wise not to be hasty to jump to conclusions:

      PHI: … And yet there is no comparison when this is done, betwixt the power of God, and of the Devil. As to the form of ecstasy and spiritual transporting, it is certain the souls going out of the body, is the only definition of natural death: and who are once dead, God forbid we should think that it should lie in the power of all the Devils in Hell, to restore them to their life again: Although he can put his own spirit in a dead body, which the Necromancers commonly practice, as ye have heard. For that is the office properly belonging to God; and besides that, the soul once parting from the body, cannot wander any longer in the world, but to the own resting place must it go immediately, abiding the conjunction of the body again, at the latter day. And what CHRIST or the Prophets did miraculously in this case, it cannot in no Christian mans opinion be made common with the Devil.”

      Did you notice that his characters agree that the soul lies in a resting place until the day of resurrection? A resting place… you could agree with that, could you not? John Calvin could not: he argued “no rest for the wicked” (quoting Isaiah 57:20) while neglecting passages like “there the wicked cease from troubling…” (see Job 3:17).

      As to whether or not I am using the right tract… I improvise when it seems appropriate. Paul quoted the Greek poets, Justin Martyr made references to mythology, Jude made an allusion to the book of Enoch, and the Old Testament even makes note of the book of Jasher … twice…

      … and in parting, are you sure you’re properly estimating where I stand on this matter? Maybe you are being a little hasty in your conclusion? What is it that you were implying that I am mistaken about?

    3. Andrew,
      WOW, Yes, I certainly saw your point from the beginning! However, consider for a moment that when Jesus was confronted with error during the 6 recorded temptation accounts in the Gospels he replied with, “It is written…” and not once supported his answer by quoting the local theologians and their opinions…. Whether we agree or disagree on anything is not as big an issue compared to our responsibility as “workmen” who need not be ashamed of our workmanship as we diligently endevour to “rightly divide” the scripture..

      I only point this out because SO MANY of our contemporary bible students AND BIBLE TEACHERS of our day place their trust in the fleeting words of the commentaries and NOT the scriptures. I have great respect for Martin Luther (and others) and what those men accomplished coming out of the dark ages but if you take a look at the reformation teachings it was greatly based on their own studies of the scriptures. The dark ages were DARK and although these men made great steps forward they never made it back to the purity of the revelation of the great MYSTERY (Eph 3 & Col 1:25-28) given to Paul.

      best regards,

    4. Jesus did answer the devil with “it is written” and he did speak to the Sadducees quoting from the books of Moses, but how did he address the Samaritan woman at the well? Didn’t he get her attention beginning with “Go call thy husband” knowing that she had no husband, thinking several steps ahead? In that case Jesus didn’t use scripture, but instead chose to establish himself as a prophet.

      I think this next example may have been cited already in the thread (above):

      Act 17:22-23, 28 KJV
      (22) Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.
      (23) For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

      (28) For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.

      The Athenian poets were not exactly scripture, but Paul chose them as a reference because it would be appropriate for his audience. Different audiences are affected differently, so any preacher may find it worthwhile to consider multiple approaches.

      . When among Saduccees, use the first five books of the Bible,
      . When among Jews, use the Old Testament,
      . When among Greeks, use reason and contrast against their mythology,
      . … and so forth…

      I have a friend whom I had talked with about life and death over a prolonged period of time (years), even once about the apparition of Endor, but what seemed to get through to him was a casual comment I had made concerning Martin Luther, “… that all souls sleep ’till doomsday.” Afterwards he started to consider the rest of the scriptures more seriously, but I hadn’t anticipated that it would have that type of effect. But if it works then I’m thankful for it just the same.

      If I am to summarize my point, I am suggesting that effective preaching does not always make obvious use of scripture. We must consider our audience, put ourselves in their shoes, and think carefully what matters to them.

    5. Andrew,
      Did you read the preaching from Paul from acts 17? it is all stuff from the old testament that was previously written..

      You missed my point_ That quoting commentaries or bible teachers is not proof of anything but an opinion .. perhaps you should re read the entire post and follow the logic..

      best regards,

    6. Hello Bob,

      I did reread a lot of what was written, and although I cannot respond to all of it, there is something that came to my attention. Specifically, you said that Adam died the day he took of the fruit from that tree… and then based upon this you said that only the spirit of Adam died (so this suggests that he was walking about without a spirit?)

      … and then based upon this you are teaching this to a captive audience of real prisoners. Considering that you were concerned that others might be using preconceived ideas without allowing the Bible to define its own terms, I think that you might want to look at that passage again.

      Where does it say that Adam died that day? My scripture says that Adam died when he was nine hundred and thirty years old (Genesis 5:5) and only after he had sons and daughters. I have no scripture saying Adam died that day, nor any scripture predicting such. Are you sure you are reading the verse correctly?

      Gen 2:17 KJV
      (17) But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

      It does not say, “for in the day thou eatest thereof thou wilt surely die” … but that seems to be the way you are reading the passage. There are several other locations in the scripture that also use that same grammatical construction, where the “shalt” happens that day, but the fulfillment of that “shalt” happens at a future time. Is there a reason why Genesis 2:17 would not follow these same rules?

      Besides the biblical examples (feel free to ask me if you cannot find them yourself) this would also be consistent with the rules of English grammar, i.e. “shall” vs. “will” which can be referenced in any decent printed English dictionary, or even Wikipedia.

      This particular issue of grammar also answers another question I saw Jack raise concerning:

      When Jesus told the thief on the cross, “..Today you will be with me in paradise.” Was he referring to heaven; or was He referring to Abraham’s bosom? We know he told Mary not to touch Him when she saw him outside thee tomb… “for I have not yet ascended.”

      Jack, the simple answer is that Jesus never said “Today you will be with me in paradise.” Some bibles do carry that translation, but it would be an incorrect translation that would conflict with what we knew from both old and new testaments. Here is a good translation of that passage:

      Luk 23:42-43 KJV
      (42) And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.
      (43) And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.

      There is a world of difference (quite literally, a world) between:

      “today wilt thou be with me in paradise” … where the fulfillment of “be with me in paradise” occurs that very day, and …

      “today shalt thou be with me in paradise” … where the promising of “be with me in paradise” occurs that very day.

      Will is not the same as shall, which is why we have two different words for it in English. However, the Greek word in the passage can be translated as either “shall” or “will” depending upon the skill and application of the translators. In this case, “shall” is the correct translation, for the following reasons:

      1) The context of the question concerned “when you come into your kingdom” … and Jesus has not yet come into his kingdom.

      2) Paradise is defined elsewhere in scripture as heaven. Heaven is the adode of God our Father, yet three days after this event Jesus told Mary that he had not yet ascended to the Father. Therefore, if Jesus had not yet ascended to Paradise three days later, he most certainly had not ascended to heaven with a thief on the day he died.

      3) We are told positively elsewhere (through Jesus, Paul, and Peter) where Jesus was during those three days, and it was not Paradise. It was the grave, the belly of the earth, hell, and beneath. None of those are “Paradise.”

      4) The consistent biblical revelation requires literal resurrection for one to “be” anywhere, including having thought, being, love, hatred, envy, or the ability to praise God. Scriptures omitted for brevity, but shall be provided upon request.

      Although I asked Bob to try to look for these himself, I should probably provide a demonstration here to illustrate that the Bible also knows the difference between “shall” and “will” …

      1Sa 18:21 KJV
      (21) And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. Wherefore Saul said to David, Thou shalt this day be my son in law in the one of the twain.

      … but David was not his son in law that particular day, was he? Read the account, and you will see that he had a rather large and lengthy prerequisite task to fulfill before he could be acknowledged as a son in law. The promising (the shalt) was performed that day, not the fulfillment.

      And for another example that stands out with definitive language:

      1Ki 2:42 KJV
      (42) And the king sent and called for Shimei, and said unto him, Did I not make thee to swear by the LORD, and protested unto thee, saying, Know for a certain, on the day thou goest out, and walkest abroad any whither, that thou shalt surely die? and thou saidst unto me, The word that I have heard is good.

      … but if one minds the account, this was repeated after the man has come back from traversing in a foreign country, certainly not on the same day it was first pronounced. A long period of time passed between when this was “shalted” that “very day” and when Shimei was actually executed. The law was made sure that very day, but the law was not fulfilled until a later day.

      And the English dictionary would confirm these rules as well. That translation you were using of Luke 23:43 of “this day you will be with me in paradise” didn’t exist until a little more than 100 years ago. Every English translation prior to this, including Wycliffe, Tyndale, Geneva, King James, the Catholic Douay Rheims, the Revised Version, and the American Standard Version of 1901 properly translated this passage as “shall” – because the promise was being made that day.

      One final example to demonstrate that “shall” is not the same as “will” which can make the difference between a divine pronouncement or a simple prediction can be easily be seen in Moses:

      Exo 20:4 KJV
      (4) Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:

      “Thou wilt not make unto thee any graven image” would not have been a commandment, but rather a failed prediction. There is a difference.

      Just like a handwritten check (or any legal document) bears a date of the authorized signature that makes the promise sure, regardless of when the check is actually cashed (or when the contract is actually fulfilled) kings command “shalt” statements every day, passed into law that very day, regardless of when the promise is actually fulfilled.

      Joh 11:24-26 KJV
      (24) Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.
      (25) Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
      (26) And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

      Doesn’t this make more sense when the nuances of grammar are properly understood? Jesus did not say that those who believed in him will never die, but that they shall never die. And he did not tell Martha that Lazarus was in heaven or paradise, or that he was anything but dead, did he?

      So in both cases here, replying to both Bob and Jack, I believe that you are misreading the grammar of these verses, and arriving at very different conclusions than would be otherwise warranted.

      For Bob, this means that it would seem that you would lack support for this body soul spirit division that would have Adam wandering about like a spiritless zombie for almost 900 years before when scripture actually does tell us he died. Does not James say that the body without the spirit is dead, James 2:26? “For the as the body without the spirit is dead…. ?”

      For Jack, allowing the verse to be translated more faithfully from the Greek without an insertion of an unwarranted “will” does tend to remove most of your evidence for people being alive (active, aware, in heaven or otherwise) whilst they are dead. Per Acts 2:34, “For David is not ascended into the heavens…” and was not David a man after God’s own heart?

      This wound up being a little longer than I intended, but so much can go wrong when a verse is misread, even hinging on a single word of grammar. Look what happened in the gospel accounts when someone changed one word and possibly created the story of the Wandering Jew…

      Joh 21:22-23 KJV
      (22) Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me.
      (23) Then went this saying abroad among the brethren, that that disciple should not die: yet Jesus said not unto him, He shall not die; but, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee?

      This could happen to the best of us, if we are not careful… so let’s be very careful.


      P.S. Bob, I did find a location where Jesus did consult the local commentaries, and did use the opinions of the theological experts of his day. Are you interested?

      Mar 11:29-30 KJV
      (29) And Jesus answered and said unto them, I will also ask of you one question, and answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things.
      (30) The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? answer me.

      So if they had said, “of heaven” then would he not have replied, “Why then did ye not believe him?” And what would that be but using the opinions of the established theological experts when it served him to advantage? He didn’t say that they should be accepted always, but he could use their own answers against them. Thus, John Calvin becomes extremely useful when addressing “the spirit of Samuel” question.

    7. Yes,
      I believe that Adams and Eve’s body and soul lived on for years and years but the spirit conferred upon them on a condition DIED that day and I am teaching that very thing to many others.. It was Christ’s work on earth that bought back for us the spirit which was first shed forth on the day of Pentecost shortly after Jesus assertion into heaven

      The misunderstanding of BODY SOUL and SPIRIT as a “complete man” has caused great confusion in the Christian teachings for centuries…

      you may be among them…

      all the other stuff you wrote about is so “all over the place with” and it wasnt worth commenting on or taking my time to straighten it all out for you…

      I would dare not compare John Calvin to John the Baptist!

      I seek the right dividing of the word and not to justify my thinking as many others desire to do. Once I have worked the Word in confidence then I stand on my conviction.

      Just ask your self,,


      I have read and heard many of the commentaries and traditions also and can see them living and breathing in your writings.


      My rewards and salvation for eternity has naught to to with yours or MEN’S opinions OF ME OR MY WORKS i ACCEPT THAT MY REWARDS is based souly on my decisions and believing.. and I am GOOD with that!!!!

      best regards,


    8. Hello Bob,

      I fear I have just reason to question your reading comprehension:

      You replied (today, March 4th, 2013),
      “I would dare not compare John Calvin to John the Baptist!”

      Considering that my theme was being careful in ones reading, this is most ironic. I compared John Calvin to the Pharisees whom Jesus addressed, not John the Baptist. Wasn’t I just talking about how important it was to read the actual words instead of phrases that we would invent?

      You also asked (even shouted):

      Just ask your self,,


      I have read and heard many of the commentaries and traditions also and can see them living and breathing in your writings.

      OK Bob, please show me where my writings are “living and breathing” the commentaries and traditions. Of all people for you to say this of, I must be one of the “most least likely” for that to stick. I would prefer if you would use my actual statements in this forum, but I will allow you to use anything I have ever written that you could find on the entire world wide web.

      … or even my website. Just quote me exactly and say where you took it from.

      -Andrew Patrick

      P.S. If you are teaching what is not in scripture, then you might take care to heed your own warning, that the judgment will be more strict with teachers. When someone establishes something from scripture, and your reply is “I don’t care, I am teaching this anyway, I don’t have time to show you how you are wrong” then how are you any different from others you have condemned? Isn’t that simply furthering your own tradition?

  13. Hello Matt,

    I saw a lot of questions fly back and forth earlier… would you be willing to assemble a few of those factors of why you might think that the dead had any consciousness or awareness at all, and present them to me, that I might have a chance to answer? I don’t think there are stupid questions, and I understand if something might be brought forth just so it could be discussed.

    In the meantime, I have a couple questions for you about Revelation:

    1. Do you believe that Revelation was an actual live happening, or a vision?
    2. Of the first four seals, where are the horsemen of Revelation 6? Are these literal horsemen, and literal horses? Is it possible that they were played by actors?
    3. Of the fifth seal, under which we see the souls of them slain for the word of God, where is this altar actually located? What altar is being referenced? Could this possibly be a symbolic altar, in reference to a known existing altar?
    4. If those souls under that altar were real and actual saints, and if they had been raised specifically so they could say their lines for John in Revelation, what were they told to do next? (see Revelation 6:11)…
    5. Is it possible that God could have used “special effects” instead of “live actors” for these parts?

    I also have an oblique answer for something you were asking above. I was watching this movie, where Abraham Lincoln speaks to the Union soldiers. Oops, except… the problem is that Abraham Lincoln is dead. He died a long time ago, and this wasn’t the “spirit” of Abraham Lincoln. But you weren’t confused when I said that Abraham Lincoln was speaking in a movie, were you?

    Would you have been a bit confused (or irritated) if I continued to refer to Abraham Lincoln as “the actor that played Abraham Lincoln?” Likewise, I do not think it unusual when the inspired writer first defined his context as a seance conducted by a medium that summoned familiar spirits, and then referred to the spirit that spoke as “Samuel” instead of “the familiar spirit that played Samuel” or “the spirit that Saul chose to accept as Samuel.” The context of the passage itself should provide enough explanation.

    Could the spirit have given a true prophecy? It very well could, it often happens when people consult occult spirits that very bad results are predicted, and those very bad results do come true. If people seek out devils for their future, they may get what they asked for, for God may allow them rein to do as they will with people that defy his protection.

    But, I diverge.. would you please grant me an opportunity to answer any outstanding questions you may have, concerning whether the dead have any being, even one or two questions at a time? I would like to see this topic addressed carefully and methodically.

    1. Andrew, I have been out of town for the past week and just got back to the office. I have a lot to catch up on but will try to get back to this. I have had a lot of loose ends on the blog lately and little time to dive into it all.

  14. May God bless you all for your contributions. But I want to implore all to refrain from all these arguments because it could lead to commotion and confusion. But, instead stick to the truth and the truth is that ” Christ has died, Christ is risen and Christ will come again. In addition, let’s be praying unto God, to give us more understanding of His word because His word is a mystery and passes our understanding. May God bless you once again.

    1. Hey Ayo, (aka:: “Cant we all just get along?”)

      Did you read ALL the posts? Do you understand the main issues here?

      There appears to me to be a significant misunderstanding about the nature of the dead, evil spirits and occult mediums which have misguided Christians for centuries and caused the ruin of many Christian lives. Very few contest your points but they add nothing to this discussion topic. Healthy and thoughtful consideration of concerns (on topic) is not confusion.

      Matt has assured me he is going to address my early questions and concerns about his original post and I am patiently waiting to hear from him. Others have piped up here along the way with little to add (biblical) to my original concerns. Wandering off topic helps no one but only adds to confusion.

      I hear your opinion and happen to agree with your position but you are on off topic; perhaps. if you were to focus on your opinions on a new thread you can get the help you need and help those who want to read about your opinion. I suggest your judgmental injection of your feelings here are not helpful to solving the misunderstandings of the original post and carries little weight for profitable guidance for obtaining a solution regarding the state of the dead, the influence of evil spirit and occult mediums.

      If you feel I am a bit “rough” or “un-loving” here perhaps if you were to read the book of Jeremiah you might understand why I am so persistent and straight up. . He was quite bold and direct with his words.

      Jer 1:10
      I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms,
      to root out,
      and to pull down,
      and to destroy,
      and to throw down,
      to build, and to plant.

      best regards,

    2. Along those lines, Bob, I think I’m still waiting for you to show evidence of my alleged “REGURGITATION OF TRADITION AND COMMENTARIES” (caps in original) that you see “living and breathing in [my] writings…”

      Seeing that it is getting closer to two weeks since you declared that initial judgment, then how shall I (or anyone else) interpret that silence? Consider the mote in thine own eye…

    3. … the only obvious assumption would be that although you insist that others provide answers, that you yourself are unwilling to provide answers when asked. In this particular case there is an additional irony, seeing that you said that I was a slave to tradition and commentary (me?)

      So maybe you could heed your own advice and actually read the material of whomever it is you seek to critique. If your basic assessments are so off base, it tends to detract from the validity of anything else you might have to say.

      So putting this plainly, you need to prove your statements. Until then your credibility is lacking, and you really shouldn’t be criticizing others for questioning whether these threads are truly profitable, or simply a platform for unnecessary contention.

      I am trying to be nice about this, but your hand is being called. If you have something to say, you need to be ready to support it on its merits when it is called into question. That’s not merely a standard for everyone else, it applies equally.

    4. AP, I hope you feel better

      There are only 2 reasons people ask questions..

      1) Because they want to learn,
      someone who wants to learn is always worthy the of time and effort needed to help them seek the truth

      2) because they want to argue
      these types are stuck on stupid and do not want to learn. I ignore them…

    5. So, Bob, answer me this:

      Mar 11:29-30 KJV
      (29) And Jesus answered and said unto them, I will also ask of you one question, and answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things.
      (30) The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? answer me.

      … so which of those categories would that put Jesus in? Was he sincerely trying to learn from the Pharisees, or was he stupid and only wanting to argue, fit to be ignored? Your category one, or your category two?

    6. Jesus was the standard of truth. Anyone can clearly see that Jesus was exposing the truth by asking the question. Jesus’ wisdom surpassed all that of the chief priests, the scribes and elders. By asking them a simple question he exposed their wickedness, their deception to all that they looked good on the outside but their heart was damaged. In so doing his brilliance of truth shown forth. The scribes, et all, on the other hand, asked questions because they were “stuck on stupid” and they did not want to come meekly to a true answer. Jesus wanted an answer to his question the “stuck on stupid” group wanted a hateful argument.

      Ap, are you looking for a truthful answer to your question you addressed in your post or are you wanting to continue with your pithy persistence?

      Got an answer??

    7. So Bob, which group did you place Jesus in? Cutting past some of that dodging about you did, it seems that you placed him in group one, that is, Jesus was “someone who wants to learn is always worthy the of time and effort needed to help them seek the truth…” and those scribes and Pharisees were refusing to help him seek the truth, it seems.

      Or, if you were not placing him in that category, you must have invented another (third) category, but you already said that there were only two possible categories of people that asked questions. So it seems that you have contradicted yourself.

      There is a follow-up question I had for this as well. Considering that you had only allowed for two categories of people who asked questions, when you were asking questions of Matt, which category did that place you in?

      1) Were you sincerely seeking an answer and willing to be taught by Matt to seek the truth?
      2) Or did you have no intention of learning from Matt, and were only seeking an argument?

      3) Or is this where that third category of “being God” that you allowed for Jesus also apply to you?

      (… and yes, I am wondering how you would answer that, that is a real non-rhetorical question.)

      So besides that question (of identifying your own question category) I am still waiting for you to provide proof of your prior accusation of almost two weeks ago that alleged …

      (you wrote)


      I have read and heard many of the commentaries and traditions also and can see them living and breathing in your writings.

      Even setting aside that the first part of that shouting was actually a question (which group does that put you in again?) the second portion is an accusation, of the like that I have never heard applied to me before by anyone. I have been accused of not “honoring the brothers that have gone before” and of disregard for tradition, commentaries, and so-called scholars, but I have never ever been accused of “living and breathing … commentary and tradition” in my writings.

      You are in the position of a witness (or an accuser) that is being cross-examined. Yes, I still desire an answer to my question. Alternatively, if you come to realize that you were mistaken, an apology would be accepted…

      …and then perhaps consider a more gentle approach to the other forum members as well.


      P.S. This method of judgment is also biblical and we are given its example by Jesus, i.e. “Out of thine own mouth will I judge thee” … (Luke 19:22) You set your own definitions, and so is it not also fair if you are judged by those definitions as well?

    8. Bob… I didn’t answer your question? I thought I was being pretty direct, yes, your answer was required because your accusation was being cross examined. But since you bring it up…

      Do you remember saying this?

      There are only 2 reasons people ask questions..

      So, that question you were asking… were you asking me in a sincere desire to learn, or because you wanted to argue?

      (You’ve been offered an honorable way out, why don’t you take it?)

  15. Bob, I can think of another couple reasons that people ask questions:

    3) As a gentle way of teaching, to illustrate a point in a way that becomes obvious when it is attempted to be answered

    4) As a method of exposing false teachers, when they can not and will not answer the question. This same reason is also used when exposing false witnesses or unraveling false accusations.

  16. I have leaned a lot from just reading all the post , and they were outstanding only thing I would disagree with is how you talk to one another it’s about reading to understand and piggy back off information that we find which is helpful to move the ministry of our Lord. I have really learned a lot from every one and will be using all the tools you have supplied me with, Ministry is hard then I thought with that said I’m again learning a lot from you all just keep up the great work and bless one another with God is giving to everyone in his minister. Thank yo ,Thank you for help me see Christ.

  17. I had forgotten that you had written about this. This past Saturday was “Holy Saturday,” when Jesus went to the underworld or the “harrowing of hell”, which this is typically called in liturgical church tradition, is remembered. It is also the origin of the “descended into hell” or “descended to the dead” in the Apostles Creed. Now you have to split hell into Hades/Sheol, the realm of the dead, and Gehenna, the realm for punishment of the wicked. At that point, you get that Jesus went to dead, perhaps to meet with the Patriarchs and the Prophets and to go in and subsequently leave showing that death could be beaten. Isaiah alluded to this in 24:21-22. Though apocalypitc, Revelation 20:13-14 says that death and Hades gave their dead and then were thrown into the lake of fire.

  18. Hi Matt, the written compendium of 1 Enoch may date from 300 BC, but the narrative content is a lot more ancient (and very modern). Given Matthew 16: 19, how could it be otherwise.

  19. Apologies Matt, it looks like I started a blog, and got called off onto something else. By and large, I agree with what you said if your position hasn’t changed in the interim – the safe Christian position is to accept what Simon Peter and Jude wrote as that is canonical Scripture and there does seem to be continuing disagreement amongst Biblical scholars on the authenticity and the antiquity of the various sub-books of 1 Enoch. However, I think a couple of points need a mention.

    First, it’s clear from the readership addressed by Peter’s letters that he assumed that the wide-spread churches of the Dispersal shared a commonly held knowledge of the events witnessed by the patriarch Enoch, possibly as a result of the Classical Jewish religious education of that day. Jude seems to further narrow the field as to the source by exactly quoting the Great Judgement prophecy of 1 Enoch 1: 9. The Book of Enoch, in some form, was obviously part of the studied Jewish scriptures of that day. Moreover, without reference to this book, there is no contextual information about who the prophecy was specifically aimed at, and how to recognize when the prophecy is about to be accomplished. 1 Enoch 1 says it has relevance for believers in the far-distant future re Enoch’s time, and at that point (not before), what he wrote of would be understood. Being admitted canonical Scripture (Jude vv 14-16), the Holy Spirit Himself granted it as being important for latter-day believers on Earth, and the loss of access to the book until fairly recently may mean that it was not a crucial issue before the time when it re-surfaced. A brief dip into a couple of English translations of the book convinces me that the prophecy could not have completed before the last decades of the 20th century AD. It describes scenarios in the heavens that match unforeseen discoveries made in radio astronomy after the 1970s, and which are understandable in terms of General Relativity, an invention of the 20th century. Should we be surprised if natural science sometimes gets it right, given that God created both the material world of nature and the immaterial spiritual world? It does raise boundary questions, that I think we need to be careful of, especially, if we are sure we know…

    Second point – God is not a source of confusion. If His appointed leader of the First Church, Simon Peter [Matthew 16: 18-19] drew people’s attention to the witness of Enoch, then given that Peter lived several hundred years after the era of the Second Temple, the knowledge of Enoch current then must be adequately accurate – that’s regardless of whether some scribe penned it down from (say) a miraculous vision, or, more likely, by copying from an older manuscript. There is a growing body of scholarly opinion that sections of the book pre-date the Second Temple and maybe even the First. Now, if Peter, living closer to the decisions on the way in which knowledge of Enoch was disseminated, found 1 Enoch adequate – the fact that Jude did, argues for the likelihood of this – surely, given what was granted to Simon Peter by Jesus [Matthew 16: 19], as Christians we need to put our faith there, rather than on even learned opinions of disputing scholars. Again, we are asked to decide between faith in Christ, or faith in the opinions of people. I was taught at the outset by our preachers that the first was the only acceptable choice for a Christian.

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