Luke 16:22-26 ”So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. “And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ ”But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. ‘And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’(NKJ)
How do we explain to to people what happens when we die? Do we pray for the dead? Where do they go, and how do we prove it?
Living in a Latin country, it is customary that when a person dies family members and friends pray for the soul to enter heaven for nine days. After the nine days are completed, those that have prayed feel assured that the persons soul has entered heaven and are now at rest.
But this is what the Bible has to say.
The scripture above talks about the beggar Lazarus, full of sores and the rich man clothed in purple and fine linen.
When both men died, Lazarus went to hell, and the poor man went to heaven. These two men had different destinies. Both Lazarus and the rich man went to a place of departed spirits called in the Hebrew language ¨Sheol¨and in the Greek language ¨Hades.¨
The rich man was in a place of torment, and Lazarus in a place of rest. Between these two places there was a great gulf fixed that could not be crossed, in other words a gap probably larger than the grand canyon.
This gulf could not be crossed, which means that there is no hope to change the eternal destiny of the soul after death. Because of this, it is of no value to pray for the dead. The decision to accept or reject Jesus as Savior must be made during this life. It is this decision that determines the destiny of your soul.
The place of rest for departed spirits of the righteous was called Abraham’s Bosom. This meant it was a place for those who followed the same faith of Abraham by serving the one true and living God.
While we are on this earth, it is our decision to choose our destiny. We have two places to choose from; Heaven or Hell, and these two places are very real and exist.
Why not choose Jesus, and choosing Jesus means you choose life. With that you will have life more abundantly. Choose to live in a place and live the rest of your days in a place where God will wipe away every tear from your eye; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. Revelation 21:4