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Does Immortal Soul Doctrine Deny The Gospel?

The gospel is defined as the resurrection of Jesus. Also called "the good news".

1 Now I declare to you, brothers, the Good News which I preached to you, which also you received, in which you also stand, 2 by which also you are saved, if you hold firmly the word which I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.  1 Cor. 15:1-5

So the good news was that Jesus rose from the dead. If "immortal soul" doctrine were true would not that be better news? After all one would instantly find himself in Heaven. He would be immortal apart from the resurrection.

 

Apostle Paul tells us that immortality was brought to light "revealed" through the gospel!

  8 Therefore don’t be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner; but endure hardship for the Good News according to the power of God, 9 who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given to us in Christ Jesus before times eternal, 10 but has now been revealed by the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who abolished death, and brought life and immortality to light through the Good News. 2 Tim.1:8-10

This says to me that immortality was not yet revealed before the gospel. There are a few places in the OT where the resurrection was mentioned like Daniel chapter 12:1-3 but according to Paul it must have largely still been a mystery up until Jesus rose from the dead.

If immortality was not revealed until the gospel how could the people living before and at the time of Christ been believing men could have been dying and then granted immortality/eternal life based on the Jewish scriptures?

I realize immortality was taught "instant Heaven" in other religons of the day. Apparently some Jewish groups borrowed such teaching from them.

But let us focus for a minute on the meaning of "the good news". Where was the improvment of the resurrection over the doctrine of dying and immediately having etenal life if such were true?

It seems the good news was the fact that men who die are able to live again by means of the resurrection , Jesus being its firstfruits. After all if everyone who had ever died to that point in time was already alive in the paradise of "Abrahams Bosom" how would it really be good news to them? Supposedly they all then went with Jesus back to Heaven.

Now they teach when a Christian dies he goes directly there into the bliss of eternal life. So the resurrection or good news that Jesus revealed seems irrelevant for them does it not?

Which news seems better to you? That when men die they go straight to Heaven into eternal life or that at the coming of Jesus you will rise again and then inherit eternal life?

Which one of these is the "good news" according to the apostles doctrine?

 

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Couldn't the gospel have been considered good news in the sense that for those who obeyed it, their "immortal soul" would go immediately to be with Jesus instead of going immediately into a place of torment? Wouldn't that have been good news, irrespective of some furture resurrection?

 

But what would have made that "good news" or the "gospel"? If they already were believing they went to Paradise when they died they were probably happy with that. What would have made the "good news" of Jesus resurrection better news than what they already believed IF INDEED thats really what they DID believe?

 

It seems Paul who said the gospel found its climax in the fact that Jesus (not just his body) rose again on the third day. This he calls the gospel. The good news that Jesus overcame death and that through him we could have a like experience.

Then the whole chapter of 1 Cor. 15 he is building more and more info toward the ultimate hope of the Christian. To be made immortal at Christs coming.

51Behold , I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep , but we shall all be changed , 52In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound , and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed . 53For this corruptible must  put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.54So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass  the saying that is written , Death is swallowed up in victory.55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?   1 Cor. 15:51-55

Now to Paul THAT was the good news! Note that not once in that very long chapter does he mention anyone having eternal life or immortality until the second coming. If such were true THAT would have been the "good news".

I think that chapter 15 of 1st Corinthians defines the good news/gospel. Its relevance to us then is fully expanded by pointing to the truth of the resurrection!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 
David Huston said:

Couldn't the gospel have been considered good news in the sense that for those who obeyed it, their "immortal soul" would go immediately to be with Jesus instead of going immediately into a place of torment? Wouldn't that have been good news, irrespective of some furture resurrection?

I agree with you that the good news has primarily to do with the resurrection. But for those who believe in the "immortal soul," they would say that each soul will spend eternity in either heaven or hell. So the good news is that a soul can escape an eternity hell through the gospel and instead spend eternity in heaven. I can see why people who believe this would consider the gospel really good news. What I'm asking is, how do we respond to that argument? I realize we can refute it from the Scriptures, but I don't see how we can claim that their position negates the idea of good news. We may have better news, but if they are correct (which I don't believe), then they would have good news too. Do you see what I'm saying, Bro. Mike? 

To me its the same thing as Trinitarianism. They say very strongly they not not believe in 3 Gods. They just believe there are 3 co equal persons who are the one God. Likewise immortal soul teachers say they are not denying the gospel because THEY SAY the gospel is a two fold thing. First you die and go Heaven. Your spirit and soul are in bliss and happiness. Then later they get to be reunited with the body they used to have.

Now in both instances Trinitarianism and Immortal Soul doctrine they claim they are teaching the truth. They both have some truth in their teaching. Should we assume God will give them a break on the errors? They were sincere but wrong? I mean if he does thats fine with me. I seek no ones harm.

Yet if he judges the beliefs we hold and teach others is it possible for people to be lost because of it? If so then we should love the truth and treat it as it were the truth shouldnt we?

I don't think you're getting my point, Bro. Mike. I'm not suggesting that the immortal soul people are right any more than I would suggest a Trinitarian is right. I believe a person is saved by the "sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth" (2 Thessalonians 2:14). All I'm suggesting is that they do have a logical basis for calling the gospel "good news," since they believe that each immortal soul will go to hell unless it is saved through the gospel. At least some believe that. I'm not talking about those who think that everyone, in the end, goes to heaven.

Where Im coming from is if indeed the righteous were already going to eternal happiness in Paradise how was the resurrection of Jesus body better news than what they were already believing? I mean the belief already was (among the teachers of the day) that righteous people went to Heaven.

Even today people really say they look forward to the day of their death because they are going straight to Heaven. They dont seem to have any expectation of joy or happiness at the teaching of the resurrection when Jesus comes. So to them the good news is their immortal soul goes straight to Heaven apart from the resurrection at the last day.

So to me it seems immortal soul is a different "good news" than the resurrection of the dead.

Right, that was the point I was trying to make.

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