QUESTION: Hi Sister T, I have been told that the Bible says that the soul dies with the body.
How can that be, it doesn't make sense that we are born, we gain knowledge and experience , we grow old and we die. What a waste of a life. What for? Do we have an ethereal body that can live in the spirit dimension and we would be conscious in the non physical world? Wasn't reincarnation part of the Bible but Emperor Constantine removed it?..
ANSWER: Hello and thank you for writing!
The Bible helps us to see that we are souls, and not that we were given souls or have souls. The scriptures show soul to be a person, an animal, or the life that a person or animal enjoys.
Gen. 2:7 KJV "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul."
Here the Bible clearly says, man BECAME a living soul, not he was given a soul. We are souls, and when the breath of life is active in our souls, we are living souls. When the breath of life is not active in a soul, then it's a dead soul or person.
This scripture also helps us to see that man was formed from the dust of the ground. So we do not have an ethereal body.
Ezekiel 18:4 KJV "Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die."
The Bible doesn't say that the soul dies with the body, but that the soul, which is the person, or animal dies.
Ecc 3:19,20 KJV "For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast: for all is vanity. 20 All go unto one place; all are of the dust, and all turn to dust again."
The belief that man has a soul that does not die stems from Greek philosophy, actually pagan religion beliefs, And is not taught in Scripture. As we can see from the above scriptures.
The Bible helps us to understand that when God created man (Gen. 2:7) he was made to live on the earth forever, Adam would have never died if he had obeyed the one command that God gave him, which was not to eat from one tree (Gen 2:17) because if he ate from that tree, God told him he would die.
So we can reason if Adam would have never ate of the tree, he'd still be alive today on the earth. God made the earth for humans. Humans were originally never meant to be in heaven. But to continue on earth forever. So we can ask, if we were not made to live on earth but in heaven then what was the point in making the earth at all? The Bible says the earth was created to be inhabited. There were angels in heaven already before God made the earth and man, (Job 38:4,7) so what was the point in putting man on earth if they were really supposed to be in heaven? Let's read some scriptures:
Gen. 1:28 KJV "And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth."
Psalms 115:16 KJV "The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord's: but the earth hath he given to the children of men."
Isaiah 45:18 KJV "For thus saith the Lord that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the Lord; and there is none else."
So we can see that God intended for man to live on the earth forever. And even put eternity into their hearts. (Ecc. 3:11).
But something happened that caused people to grow old and die, the Bible helps us to see that it was Adam's disobedience that caused this, and as his offspring, people inherited sin and death from Adam. When Adam disobeyed, God did not say, his soul would would live on, no he said he would return to the same state he was in before he was formed. That means before God created Adam he did not exist. So when he died he would cease to exist. Let's read:
Gen. 3:19 KJV "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return."
Ecc. 9:5, 10 KJV For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not any thing, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten. 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."
Romans 5:12 KJV "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:"
But as soon as Adam sinned and basically messed it up for everyone else, God immediately put into place a means of salvation for Adam's offspring, which is us. Throughout the entire Bible, we see that means of salvation spoken about. So Emperor Constantine could not have removed reincarnation from the Bible as it was never there to begin with. He would have had to rewrite the entire Bible in order for that to happen, but the Bible writings of the Apostles and prophets had been well established before Constantine. Also there have been thousands of scrolls of Bible scriptures found that date before Constantine as to it not having reincarnation in it.
What was that means of Salvation that God put into place? It was the ransom sacrifice of his only begotten son Jesus Christ. By means of Jesus the sin we inherited from Adam can be forgiven, by means of Jesus, the death that Adam brought upon us by his disobedience so that we grow old and die, will be done away with and ones who died will be resurrected back on earth to enjoy life forever as God originally purposed when he created Adam and Eve. God purposed man to live on earth and fill it, this purpose will be realized as God cannot lie and what he says he will do, he will do (Isaiah 55:11; Titus 1:2) If we left our bodies when we died, thus never really dying, or returning as something or someone else, what would be the point in Jesus going through such an agonizing death for us to be resurrected from the dead? It would make no sense to have Jesus die so that we can be resurrected from the dead if we never really die. Let's read:
John 3:16 KJV "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
Romans 6:23 KJV "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."
1 Cor. 15:20-22 KJV "But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive."
Acts 24:14 KJV "And have hope toward God, which they themselves also allow, that there shall be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and unjust."
Psalms 37:9-11 KJV "For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth. 10 For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. 11 But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace."
Psalms 37:29 KJV "The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever."
Rev. 21:4 KJV "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."
To recap, the Bible helps us to see that when Adam disobeyed God he became imperfect and sinful. Thus passing his imperfection on to us, this is why we grow old and die. But Jehovah didn't just leave us to die out. He sent his Son as a means of salvation for us, and is why Jesus' name means "Jehovah is Salvation" We were bought with a price, the precious blood of Jesus, (1 Cor. 6:20; Eph. 1:7; 1 Peter 1:18,19) and the teaching of we never die but live on as reincarnation and/or having souls that don't die dishonors God's gift of his son to us. It dishonors all that Jesus went through for us, it voids the resurrection, and it's not taught in the Bible.
Follow up if needed,
Have a good day
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Sister T, how can billions of people who have died since the Earth was made, be able to come out of their Graves and live again, when all that is left in the ground is their skeletons? It makes more sense that when people die, they have a non physical body that is conscious and lives on and at the resurrection, they take on new bodies being born from a woman.
I understand that the Bible doesn't say that, but I think that there is more to all this than what we read and are being told.
It doesn't make sense and is not logical, even though we could blindly believe every word literally .
ANSWER: Hi and thanks for following up....
Yes, that's right, the Bible does not say that. And you are correct the billions of people who have died since the earth was made are dust now. So they will not be resurrected in the same body they died in. Some people died and there were just pieces left of them, some were tortured and their bodies mangled. So this helps us to see that God is going to resurrect the "person" who died. Every single person was created with a blueprint, Scientist have learned that this blueprint, or DNA, is unique to each individual.
God, who is Almighty in power, has the capacity to remember every single DNA of anyone he wants to, and put that blueprint in a newly formed body, just as he formed Adam's body. It's not too much for him to remember. That's why we have scriptures such as these to help us humans understand:
Mal. 3:16 "At that time those who fear Jehovah spoke with one another, each one with his companion, and Jehovah kept paying attention and listening. And a book of remembrance was written before him for those fearing Jehovah and for those meditating on his name."
Phil 4:3 "Yes, I request you also, as a true fellow worker, to keep assisting these women who have striven side by side with me for the good news, along with Clement as well as the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life."
Rev. 3:5 "The one who conquers will thus be dressed in white garments, and I will by no means blot out his name from the book of life,
but I will acknowledge his name before my Father and before his angels."
So this helps us to see that God is keeping an account of the ones he is going to resurrect, the number of how many is unimportant because he has no problem remembering them all.
The Bible says that when a person dies they are not conscious of anything, there is no wisdom or knowledge after death.
Ecc 9:5,6,10 "For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing at all, nor do they have any more reward, because all memory of them is forgotten. 6 Also, their love and their hate and their jealousy have already perished, and they no longer have any share in what is done under the sun. 10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do with all your might, for there is no work nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom in the Grave, where you are going."
Psalms 146:4 "His spirit goes out, he returns to the ground; On that very day his thoughts perish."
His spirit is his breath of life, as we read in Gen. 2:7. Once you breathe your last breath, that's it. When a person dies, they don't take a breath in, no the last breath of anything that dies blows or goes out. I know this for a fact and doctors can tell you this as well, and it harmonizes with what the Bible says there in Psalms 146:4.
So if the Bible helps us to see that the dead know nothing at all because when our brain dies thoughts perish, how can they live on? Everything a person does comes from their brain. In order to be conscious ones would have to have use of their brain capacity. But the Bible tells us that when people die they do not have that.
The Bible makes perfect sense and is logical, as the Author who is God is perfect and Almighty. Since he created us, and not we ourselves, then God should know what happens to us at death. The Bible tells us specifically what happens, we cease to exist.
Blind faith is not what God wants from his people and his people do not have blind faith. That's why we have the Bible. Now if we had nothing at all from God, then one could speak of blind faith. God has proved his existence, God has proved that He cannot lie and that his prophecies foretold in the Bible have all come true at the time He said it would. History attests to many Bible prophecies and their accuracy. So having faith in God should never be blind.
Just because God is invisible, doesn't mean he isn't there. The wind is invisible, but you know it's there. Gravity is invisible but you know it's there.
God has shown and proved that he can be trusted in all things, including the Bible that he gave to man in order for them to get to know the things such as you are asking. It's up to each person to find out those things before they make accusations otherwise.
Blind faith would be believing man made doctrines that are from imperfect men who do not base their beliefs on the Bible. Any man made doctrine that presume to know more than God can't be trusted and would call for blind faith of things that make no sense.
Psalms 118:8 "It is better to take refuge in Jehovah Than to trust in humans."
Jeremiah 17:5 "This is what Jehovah says: “Cursed is the man who puts his trust in mere humans,
Who relies on human power, And whose heart turns away from Jehovah."
But when you have logic and reason that the Bible supplies, and it all makes sense, along with undeniable proof, then there is no blind faith.
So a question would be, do you believe the Bible is from God? Or would you rather settle for what imperfect people tell you who may or may not be correct because you have no way of knowing. A person can say anything, but that doesn't make it so. A person can theorize on many things, but without proof it's just a theory. Some people take theory as fact. That's blind faith. Here's a few scriptures to consider, seeing that there was no blind faith then either: Prov. 14:15; Luke 1:1-4; 1 Cor. 15:3-8; 2 Tim. 2:2; 1 Tim. 1:4; 2 Tim. 3:14-17.
For example, people believed all the way up until the 1400's that the world was flat. They also believed that the earth was supported by something. But all they had to do is read the Bible and they would have known it was round and was not supported by anything. Now that man has gone up to space, they can see for themselves what was right there in the Bible all along.
Isaiah 40:22 "There is One who dwells above the circle of the earth......"
Job 26:7 "He stretches out the northern sky over empty space, Suspending the earth upon nothing;"
Today we see that man invented DVD's and people can watch movies of other people who have died years and years ago. But yet you doubt that God who is Almighty and unlimited in power can't remember billions of people's DNA?
Just think, why there are more stars in the sky then there are people who died over the short period of 6000 years or so of man's existence and yet the Bible says that God has a name for each one.
Isaiah 40:26 "Lift up your eyes to heaven and see. Who has created these things? It is the One who brings out their army by number; He calls them all by name. Because of his vast dynamic energy and his awe-inspiring power, Not one of them is missing."
Man's brain and memory is limited, God's is not. Can a mere human put a limit on what God can do?
Mark 10:27 "Looking straight at them, Jesus said: “With men it is impossible but not so with God, for all things are possible with God.”
Job 42:1,2 "Then Job said in reply to Jehovah: 2 “Now I know that you are able to do all things
And that nothing you have in mind to do is impossible for you."
Jeremiah 32:17 "Alas, O Sovereign Lord Jehovah! Look! You made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm. Nothing is too wonderful for you,"
Rev. 4:11 "“You are worthy, Jehovah our God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, because you created all things, and because of your will they came into existence and were created.”
No, no man can over ride God and no man should try, but yet they do, why? Well there is an adversary of God who influences people to think the very opposite of what God says. That is an angel that turned wicked (John 8:44) and since we humans are loved by God and were created by God, he tries his best to turn us against God, he has been misleading people from the time of Adam and Eve until now. Satan continues to lie on God and make people think they are missing out on something more than what God gives them or tells them.
2 Corinthians 4:4 "among whom the god of this system of things has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, so that the illumination of the glorious good news about the Christ, who is the image of God, might not shine through."
It's important to learn the truth and come to know God and his son Jesus.
John 17:3 "This means everlasting life, their coming to know you, the only true God, and the one whom you sent, Jesus Christ."
---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------
QUESTION: Thank you very much Sister T. I wish I had someone like you here in Melbourne Australia to teach me.
Unfortunately, for about three years now, I have been starting Bible study with various JW's and not continued.
I think the word has got around that this is what I do and people are fed up.
I don't understand why I do this and not continue? I have at times decided to stop totally and get rid of all the books and magazines and the NWT, but someone or something is stopping me from doing this. I don't understand what is going on.
I once took some books to a second hand bookshop and after I did that I had a panic attack and I went back to the shop and took them back. I just feel embarrassed and ashamed that I have been going hot and cold with Bible Study. I was in a public Library once and this woman picked a book off the shelf titled, " Proof that Heaven Exists" and we started a conversation, she then put her hand on my shoulder and started to pray for me to accept Jesus as my redeemer and Saviour, when she finished, she said that I am now a Born Again Christian.. She was from a Pentecostal Church. After that I cancelled Bible Study. Something always happens to stop me from continuing with Bible Study. Please help me.
Hi there, thanks for writing back.
You are very welcome, I hoped I was of some help to you in your decision to resume your Bible studies with JW's, make it a matter of prayer.
I am happy to help you the best that I can.
As I mentioned at the end of my last reply, Satan is going to do all he can to keep you from studying and learning the truth about God. That includes using others to discourage you or stop you. He is as the Bible says, misleading the entire inhabited earth.
Rev. 12:9 "So down the great dragon was hurled, the original serpent, the one called Devil and Satan, who is misleading the entire inhabited earth;
he was hurled down to the earth, and his angels were hurled down with him."
You want to pray to Jehovah in Jesus' name. As Jehovah is the one who draws ones to his son. (John 6:44)
It's God's will that all sorts of people learn about him and get to know him and draw close to him, (James 4:8) that can only be done if we take the time to really search for truth. The only truth lies in the pages of the Bible.
1 Timothy 2:3-5 "This is fine and acceptable in the sight of our Savior, God, 4 whose will is that all sorts of people should be saved and come to an accurate knowledge of truth. 5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, a man, Christ Jesus,"
Having faith in God is very important, but the Bible tells us that in order for a person to be saved, it's not just from saying a prayer or by only faith, more is involved. We have to live our lives in harmony with God's will laid out in the Bible, which calls for endurance on our part.
Hebrews 10:36 "For you need endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the fulfillment of the promise."
Matthew 24:13 "But the one who has endured to the end will be saved."
James 2:18-20 "Nevertheless, someone will say: “You have faith, and I have works. Show me your faith without the works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” 19 You believe that there is one God, do you? You are doing quite well. And yet the demons believe and shudder. 20 But do you care to know, O empty man, that faith without works is useless?"
Jesus gave us a model prayer and the first thing he said we should pray for was his Father's name to be sanctified.
Matthew 6:9 "You must pray, then, this way: “‘Our Father in the heavens, let your name be sanctified."
Jesus felt that it was so important for his Father's name to be sanctified or made holy, that he made that the very first thing we should pray for. This shows that Jehovah's name should be used when addressing God in prayer or otherwise, to not use God's name Jehovah would not be showing respect or honor.
It's good to ask questions and to reason on the scriptures, and let scripture interpret scripture along with context in order to get the correct understanding, along with prayer to Jehovah.
Feel free to write anytime and I will do my best to answer any questions you may have from the Bible.