The Destiny of Mankind:
The Bible Doctrine of the Resurrections, and the Millennium

PREFACE

This paper is one of a series of papers written in the interest of bringing about a Christ desired unity into the body of Christ--composed of one Spirit, one baptism, one faith, but of many members or body parts. In today's day and age the apostle Paul, understanding the terms of the new covenant and just what it takes to be a Christian, would have recognized that these body parts are today composed of the differing denominations of Christianity instead of the various congregations of the apostolic Church of God of the sixties A.D. Just what is the unity Jesus Christ desires to see in his body? Paul explained in Ephesians 4:11-16 "It was He who gave some to be Apostles, some to be Prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching [K.Js "doctrine"] and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From Him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does it's work."

As we can see, it appears that Jesus Christ wants a unity in both the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God. "The faith" refers to a set of beliefs--accurate Biblical doctrinal understanding. "The knowledge of the Son of God" should be obvious to us--saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and the gospel of Jesus Christ. This paper is designed to honestly make clear one particular Bible doctrine, the Bible doctrine of major resurrections--as two or three Christian fellowships see it--the old Worldwide Church of God while Herbert Armstrong was alive, and the subsequent splinter churches that broke off from the Worldwide Church of God sometime later. The following is approximately what they believe about the "unsaved dead". It can be a very interesting thing to be able to sit down and read a good description of what others believe without having to visit their churches. If you ever wanted to be able to do that with this group of churches, here's your chance. And before you pass judgment, read this through. The Bible says it's a shame for a man to judge a matter before hearing it.

These topical studies are merely intended to place on the Christian table certain subjects that we Christians tend to disagree on so that they may be viewed and discussed in an open and non-divisive manner. It is NOT my intention for these studies to be used to force Christians to change their beliefs on these subjects, but to merely encourage Christians of all fellowships to open-mindedly view the beliefs of others, which may just be more accurate Biblically. Right doctrine is merely a more clear understanding of God's Word. It is my firm belief that God has blessed some Christian fellowships with a better understanding of certain areas of Scripture than he has others. When we can sit back and unemotionally and rationally view each other's beliefs in an open and honest manner, then true and powerful unity will start to spread throughout the body of believers which compose the body of Christ.

These beliefs are a composite of what four related denominations who hail from the Sabbatarian side of the body of Christ believe. Please do not feel obligated to believe anything you read here, if you find it goes against what your Christian conscience dictates. These beliefs all fall strictly into the area of secondary knowledge of salvation--not affecting a Christian's being saved or not saved one single bit. On the other hand, if you should find yourself believing what's written here and the church or denomination you belong to doesn't believe what's written here--KEEP YOUR BELIEFS TO YOURSELF--DON'T BE DIVISIVE. Be a mature Christian with a mature attitude. Romans 14 states that when you disagree in secondary matters of Scripture "have faith unto yourself in what you allow" (or allow yourself to believe). For example, if you should find yourself in church, and a few others share these beliefs with you, discussion of these beliefs with them is not being divisive. But say someone walks into the group that has radically different beliefs in these areas of eschatology. You'd better change the subject, if your desire is to not offend your brother in Christ. Be sensitive, is what the apostle Paul would advise. I dropped out of a church denomination I had been a member of for 30 years because the leadership was going amillennial and into "replacement theology". I am strongly pre-millennial and anti-replacement theology in my beliefs. So as to not be constantly at odds with the leadership and the changing beliefs of the congregation, I quietly dropped out and found a fellowship that believed most of what I believe in the secondary areas. Life is too short to run around offending people. Be mature. Practice sensitivity. If you're reading this and believe strongly in all the "unsaved dead" going to an ever-burning hellfire, read the following article to see what a tiny group of denominations on "other side" of the body of Christ believes and why. But do so with the understanding that you're reading "their" material, material that positively puts a new spin on some Scriptures we've been reading for many years. Don't be offended. Just agree to disagree in peace and love, and read this in the interest of finding out what some of your "other" brothers in Christ believe. Those who believe these things in the following paper aren't heretics--they believe in the same essentials of salvation in Jesus as you do, to one degree or another. I don't want anyone picking up rocks to stone anyone who holds these beliefs. Be a Christian, not a Pharisee.

INTRODUCTION

Before reading this paper I want to convey just where on the importance scale this Biblical knowledge lies.

Knowledge about the mechanics of how you will be given immortality is not as important as the knowledge about how to secure the promise of Jesus Christ--that if you are in Him and He in you--you will be granted Eternal Life. i.e. The actual method He uses to bring us to immortality is secondary to the knowledge of how we can secure His promise to grant us that immortality. So we can see that the knowledge of Salvation can be divided into two categories, Primary and Secondary.

1. Primary knowledge about salvation concerns achieving personal salvation through Jesus Christ, leading to being granted Eternal immortal life. (Many call this the gospel of Jesus Christ.)

2. Secondary knowledge about Salvation can also be subdivided into two categories:

a. The knowledge of just how we will be brought into the condition of attaining eternal life as Spirit Beings-- true immortality!

b. The knowledge of how the majority of humanity, past, present, and future, will be brought into a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and into personal Salvation through Him.

This paper addresses both of these secondary issues.

But why is this secondary knowledge about salvation so important? Some might say "If Jesus has promised to bring it all to pass and we can secure His promise for us personally, why worry over the details?" This is very true on a personal level, but when we try to pre-evangelize and evangelize to the unconverted world, understanding in this secondary area of the knowledge of salvation brings wisdom in our approach toward preaching to the unconverted world, a wisdom which can prevent a world of grief and mixed messages. An accurate understanding of God's overall Plan of Salvation for the whole of mankind can help prevent all of us from teaching differing and oftentimes opposing messages about Salvation and how we are to receive Eternal Life. With proper Scriptural knowledge about God's overall Plan of Salvation our approach toward preaching to the unconverted world can be accomplished with a clarity and wisdom that will make it more hard-hitting and more convincing than ever before.

This paper may show us that while God's calling is open to all that desire it right now, most at this point and most in the past have not desired to answer God's call. Are these people lost--consigned to some ever-burning hellfire--as many theologians would have us believe? This topic about Those who aren't saved are "lost," they've gone to hell, or they're going to hell...came up in a conversation I was having with some other Christians (not of my denomination), and I became acutely aware of a very large misconception many Christians have about God's overall plan to save almost everyone who was ever born. Think about it. In today's world maybe seven hundred million call themselves Christians (15 percent!). Out of this number a much fewer percentage probably actually possess the Holy Spirit and are indeed Christians (Matthew 7:21-22 addresses nominal Christians). So significantly fewer than seven hundred million are actually born-again Christians in a world of over 6+ billion people. The rest are either Muslim, Hindu, atheist or some other non-Christian religion (5 billion people are not Christians even in name!). What about everyone in this same category who lived in the past? What about potentially billions of babies and children who died never having the opportunity to become Christians, let alone live a normal lifetime? Is an all-merciful God going to cast all these people into some ever-burning hell-fire?!? God's very answer in principle to this question is found in II Peter 3:9 which states, "For the Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but for everyone to come to repentance." God, if he was being truthful through Peter (and we know God doesn't lie), must have some kind of master-plan to accomplish the intent of II Peter 3:9. Remember, this is Satan's world right now, and it has been for almost six thousand years. Until Jesus returns and locks Satan away (read Revelation 20:1-3) this will continue to be Satan's world (I John 5:19; Rev. 12:9). What is God's answer in the Bible to this perplexing question? These are the questions I hope to give some satisfying answers to in this paper. Understand, when we look at Bible prophecies, God knows exactly what each prophecy means. All prophecies will ultimately come true because they are God's predictions for the future. But our human understanding of Bible prophecy is not always 100 percent on the mark. Paul's saying about looking through a darkened glass fits perfectly when applied to trying to understand Bible prophecy. So realize that what follows is a Biblical view of one similar Scripture tied to another the way God tells us in the Bible to properly interpret prophecy or doctrine. Isaiah 28:9-10,13 states, "Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little...But the word of the Lord was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared and taken." This basically describes God's Biblical code which you may be amazed to discover was designed to hide the true meaning of the Scriptures. Why? Because God has decided whom He wishes to call and when He wishes to call them--each in their proper time order. But now back to the proper accurate interpretation of Bible prophecies. Even when we properly follow God's formula of adding similar Scripture to similar Scripture, the spin we as humans put on these prophecies, the interpretation, could be off. Know these prophetic events will happen for sure, but our understanding of precisely how they will happen, or when, is not going to be totally accurate. Even Jesus stated that no man, not even the angels in heaven would know the day or hour of his coming (the 2nd coming). So even though the prophecies may be precise predictions by God of coming events, our understanding of them is definitely not precise. This is what Paul called looking through a darkened glass. For Christians, Jesus Christ is the hope that lies within them--the hope of the resurrection to immortality. But the Bible shows that most of mankind--past and present--has not and is not being presently called to a saving knowledge of Salvation. This fact has confused and confounded many very sincere ministers of Jesus Christ in all the Christian denominations. Here is a survey of related Scriptures that may show that for all those others Jesus Christ will also become the hope that lies within them--the hope of a resurrection or change to immortality, and how. These Scriptures show what that Master-plan of God may just be. These Scriptures in no way abrogate or change the essential gospel of salvation. This paper titled "Bible doctrine of the major Resurrections" may just reveal what the growing and ever expanding Plan of Salvation for all--for now and in the future--really is.

"titanic"

I just watched the graphically realistic and popular new movie "Titanic", the true story of the tragic loss of 1500 lives when a large ocean liner on her maiden voyage hits an iceberg at night. Well over 1000 people, men women and children, died of exposure while floating with lifejackets on in the icy waters of the north Atlantic. They died while floating and waiting for a rescue that would be too late in coming. Most of the people weren't bad people, but then again, most didn't have a saving relationship with Jesus Christ either. Are they lost? Did they go into some kind of limbo spiritual world of torment--wandering souls or spirits--or did they go into some ever-burning hellfire? Watch the movie if you haven't. Then try to decide whether or not you'd do that to these people who were dying…as their loving God would you, could you, pass such a judgment on these helpless souls??? Then again hasn't most of this world been helpless souls held under the deception of Satan the devil? Read Revelation 12:9. Read the accompanying papers and see for yourself that neither does our loving Father or his Son Jesus Christ pass such a harsh judgment on the "unsaved dead."

At the very end of the movie Hollywood appears to have gotten it correct for a change (if the accompanying doctrinal paper is indeed correct.) All those who died found themselves alive in the Grand Domed Hallway of the Titanic. But then I'm getting ahead of the story--and this story involves more than just the dead of Titanic--it involves about six thousand years worth of "unsaved dead."

If you haven't seen the movie "Titanic" I highly recommend seeing. Then sit down and read this paper. You'll be relieved to read about their fate--their happy ending--the beginning of their new lives!

If this doctrinal interpretation is correct (and that's all it is, is a particular interpretation of the Scriptures on this subject), it shows that God is orchestrating the entire history of mankind to achieve the greatest number of conversions possible. Keep an open mind as you read this. It’s not wrong to hope this interpretation is true, even if you're not sure or have doubts based on your specific doctrinal upbringing.