Shedding the Tent
Sabbath School Lesson 2017 Quarter 2 Lesson 9 Wednesday
Read memory text and first paragraph,
“Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you, knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me” (2 Pet. 1:13, 14, NKJV).
In 1956, Oscar Cullmann wrote a short study called Immortality of the Soul or Resurrection of the Dead?: The Witness of the New Testament. He argued that the concept of the resurrection is quite incompatible with the concept of the immortal soul. Furthermore, he said that the New Testament lies squarely on the side of the resurrection of the dead.
“No other publication of mine,” he later wrote, “has provoked such enthusiasm or such violent hostility.”
What are the problems with the doctrine of immortality of the soul? It is based on premises that are not supported by evidence—i.e. that God, in Eden when He first created Adam and Eve gave them immortality at that point. What is wrong with this teaching?
~ Denies Biblical evidence of human mortality
- After he drove the man out, he placed on the east side of the Garden of Eden cherubim and a flaming sword flashing back and forth to guard the way to the tree of life. Genesis 3:24
- God, the blessed and only Ruler, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone is immortal and who lives in unapproachable light, whom no one has seen or can see. To him be honor and might forever. Amen. 1st Timothy 6:15,16
- For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
~ What does the idea that God gave humankind immortality in Eden say about God?
- If God has foreknowledge and knew they would sin and yet gave them immortality foreknowing millions would live just a few years, maybe a teen who sinned and never accepted Jesus, but then suffer in hell for all eternity, that would make God out to be a sadistic being, not a God of love
- If God didn’t know the future, didn’t know they would sin and gave them immortality then it make God out to not be omniscient—He doesn’t have foreknowledge, and even worse, He doesn’t even have wisdom and can’t even anticipate potential negative outcomes
- This doctrine of immortal soul ultimately makes God to be either sadistic, or incompetent and both views result in a god who is completely untrustworthy.
Read third paragraph,
“A study of what the New Testament says about death and resurrection has convinced most New Testament scholars that Cullman was correct. The New Testament indeed assumes the concept of resurrection, not the concept of an immortal soul that survives the death of the body.”
Did you notice the lesson authors have done, what SDA theologians almost always do, they skip part of this text? We cannot skip it; we must include it and understand it.
So lets read the 1st Thessalonians 4, starting in verse 13 instead of 16:
Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14 We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15 According to the Lord’s own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage each other with these words.
What is going on here? First, did you notice that the concern the NT Christians had, to which Paul was addressing, is that those living on earth would go to heaven BEFORE those who have died? This is the complete opposite of what is commonly believed today.
And today SDAs often find themselves arguing with non SDA Christians over what happens at death—do our loved ones sleep in the grave awaiting resurrection, or do they go to heaven to be with Jesus?
Our modern understanding of computers help us: We are tripartite:
- Body – Soma – Hardware
- Soul – Psyche – Software/Mind/Individuality
- Spirit – Pneuma – Energy/Breath of life
When Our Computers Run Out of Power What State Do They Go Into? (They “sleep”)
- How does the Bible describe those who “die”?
- They “sleep” but, as Jesus said, those who believe in Him will never die!
- When your computer “sleeps” it is not destroyed
- If your computer backs up on a “cloud” what happens if someone destroys your machine?
Do not be afraid of those who kill the body (hardware) but cannot kill the soul (Psyche/Software). Matthew 10:28
What happens when we die?
- The Body (soma) hardware, disintegrates to dust
- The Spirit (pneuma) energy, returns to God
- The Soul (psyche) software/individuality, is safe with Christ in Heaven, stored securely in the Lamb’s book of life – the heavenly “servers”
- The person “sleeps” waiting to be “downloaded” into new hardware (bodies)
What makes most sense and harmonizes all Scripture with science and experience?
Paul’s description of bringing the saved back from heaven and also raising them from the grave—their individualities (souls) software come back with Christ, while their hardware, bodies (soma) come up out of the grave, and God breathes in them the breath of life (spirit/pneuma) and they live again.
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Sabbath School Lesson 2017 Quarter 1 Lesson 9 Wednesday
- Sabbath School Lesson 2018 Quarter 1 Lesson 3 Wednesday
- Sabbath School Lesson 2018 Quarter 1 Lesson 3 Tuesday
- Sabbath School Lesson 2018 Quarter 1 Lesson 3 Monday
- Sabbath School Lesson 2018 Quarter 1 Lesson 3 Sunday
- Sabbath School Lesson 2018 Quarter 1 Lesson 3 Sabbath Afternoon