Heaven , Hell, and Politics

Heaven, Hell, Politics, and Personal Stories plus any topic of interest that creates news and heightens intelligent dialogue between readers – this blog is for you!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

1 - Book Info - 2006 - Q and A

Questions and Answers:

In this Section, feel free to post questions to me about my book or anything you like. For example, here is a question I received from a reader:

Why did you title the book – A Land Unknown: Hell’s Dominion?

Answer - B. W. Melvin:

The reason I titled the book is because the doctrine of Hell has become watered down and has become in essence – a land unknown to many. The doctrine of Hell and eternal punishment is fading in today’s modern culture. The relevance of both doctrines are often misunderstood and oft misquoted into obscurity. It is truly a land unknown.

Next, the title ‘Hell’s Dominion’ was chosen as a play on words and refers to Revelations 20:13-15 final outcome of Hell as a double entrée. What I mean by this is simple, Hell’s dominion, authority, power, and territory is temporary. It has an end that is just a beginning where it is stripped of its dominion, authority, power, and an eternal territory established for it. It is real. I wish none to end up in that terrible place.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


If you would like to read from a chapter from my Book - A Land Unknown: Hell's Dominion

Please follow this link to Google Books - Link Here

Here you can read a description about what part of Hell looks like in vivid detail.

B. W. Melvin

16 Comments:

Anonymous Rick from Tenn said...

I have two questions:

One: How do you define your phrase: "sin is whatever makes life ugly?"


Two: Can you help explian the riddle used in book refering too "making life, live?"

Thursday, 27 April, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

One: How do you define your phrase: "sin is whatever makes life ugly?"

Answer: Sin is the transgressing of the moral laws of God. When these laws are transgressed, they make life truly ugly for us and those affected by us. In today’s modern vernacular, very, very few people have any idea they transgress the moral laws of God. In fact, they’ll spend hours in endless debate justifying transgression. However, when you define sin as ‘what makes life ugly’ they can relate to this fact without contest. After all, who has not made life ugly?

Two: Can you help explain the riddle used in book referring too "making life, live?"

Answer: Yes, all you need to do is to translate live into alive and you’ll understand the riddle. You see, we are to be alive toward God and dead to sin. We have a responsibility to make life come alive in a Godly manner, where we live, towards those around us, as well as for ourselves [in a Christian sense]. We are creatures of Life so why do we still sow darkness where and how we live? This can only come about by dying to self so you may truly live. God’s true love slays in order to rebuild, shape, and fashion us in newness of life – hence: live--alive

Thursday, 27 April, 2006  
Anonymous Tom from Iowa said...

The concept of making live alive - can you explain this more?

Sunday, 30 April, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

The concept of making live alive - can you explain this more?

Yes Tom, The riddle states –make life, live. When reading this phrase, think of making life better for those around you and as well as perk up yourself. Many Christian’s think that they should become another Billy Graham, or join foreign missions, or do great news worthy things for Christ, in order to live for God. Fact is, God wants you and me to shine where we are at, now, and cause healthy good growth where ever our light so shines. [Matthew 5:16]

This comes about in the simple things that concern everyday living right now, where we are at in this here and now.

For example, coming home after a horrible day at work to your wife and family, the kids are screaming, the wife is upset because someone did not like her shoes. What do you do? Throw fuel on the fire and yell and tell all to shut up, I had a rotten day too – leave me alone?

Or die to this selfishness by taking that deep proverbial breath, and ask Jesus to help you shine life live, where you are at now. Instead of acting out, getting angry, drinking beer, toss fuel on a blazing fire – shine life by taking care of the kids, talk and play with them, read them a story, listen to your wife and calm her worries, etc. [Colossians 3:12-25]

One manner, you will produce strife, and the other, life as I hint at with my book by use of the word - live. This is what we are to do – shine light on darkness, and make others better off by our conduct, behavior, manner, and our Christianity. This can take on so many varied forms: A kind word, a gentle look, a compassionate listener, a helping hand. He who is faithful in least is also faithful with much. How faithful are we towards Christ and God’s work to mold in us good godlily Christ like character? [Galatians 4:19, Ephesians 2:22, Ephesians 4:17, Ephesians 5:8-17]

That is, my friend, is true Christianity – live it - live.

Monday, 01 May, 2006  
Anonymous Dan the Man said...

Yes,I have a question. I read your book and it shook me up reading about the place called hell.

Your book caused me to think on my own. So many Christian books out there - tell you what to think, how to think, but your book, on the other hand, caused me to think for my self and that was refreshing. Thank You...

The question I have is in regards to Predestination and God's Sovereignity. Can you clarify the Master Potter riddle you recorded near your book's end?

Friday, 12 May, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Question from Dan:

The question I have is in regards to Predestination and God's Sovereignty. Can you clarify the Master Potter riddle you recorded near your book's end?

Answer: I answered this elsewhere on blog in more detail in the Mach and April 2006 archives. God molds us according to how he designed us. Psalms 33:14-15 reveals how God designed us.

Psalms 33:14-15, “14 From the place of His dwelling He looks on all the inhabitants of the earth; 15 He fashions their hearts individually; He considers all their works.” NKJV

Psalms 33:14-15, “14 From his throne he observes all who live on the earth. 15 He made their hearts, so he understands everything they do.” NLT

The Hebrew word translated Fashion is directly related to ordain, predestination, fashion. What did God fashion? Answer: The human heart. What is the bible definition of the human heart used in this verse? The Heart was the ruling seat [throne] of the inner man, it is the will, soul, understanding, mind, knowledge, thinking, reflection, memory, inclination, resolution, determination (of will), conscience, heart (of moral character). All the issues of life spring forth from it. In other words, it is the production room of the soul, it is how we think, reason, etc.

Therefore, God predestined the human heart to be able to reason and think, reflect, to have memory, understanding, knowledge, resolution, determination (of will), conscience, heart (of moral character) freely and independently. He made us, molds clay into what he wills by these means. [Note Galatians 4:19]

How? He considers all our works, deeds, reasons, etc. God understands everything we do before we have done anything. He foresees all our actions, deeds, intents, plans, purposes before we were ever born. Does this mean God is a slave to human choices foreseen in the future? Absolutely NOT!

You see, this is where the predestination debate leads, either God is master puppeteer or a slave to man’s choices. What both sides of this debate neglect to explore is why God designed humanity to freely think and reason; and next, how God engages this ability of the heart to reason and think independently.

God designed the heart this way and this design absolves God of creating sin and malevolent evil. God is not the author of sin. The bible proclaims this. The wisdom of God, the fairness [equity] of God, the righteousness of God, the perfect justice of God, the mercy and love of God is beyond our mortal comprehension. We can note glimpses of these and record these in writing but what can be written in words is too limited to adequately explain the deepness and vastness of God. Pray for a glimpse.

God designed the heart to freely exercise independent thought. Again let me stress that God is NOT a slave to the whimsical choices of our hearts foreseen in the future of time. One reason for this design is to engage ones heart with a challenge – a call. He designed the heart to be engaged. This is God’s own equity, fairness, displayed.

The heart responds to God’s personal initiative to ‘call’ out too. An example of this is found in Genesis chapter three. What happened in the Garden of Eden? God called out to Adam and Eve. What would have occurred if He remained silent? Humanity would be lost in sin, forever doomed. God engages the human heart by His calling out and calling forth which engages our ability to reason on what course of action one should take in response to God’s call.

God knows everything. He foreknew the need to call as well as how one will freely respond to this call before anyone does good or evil, and before one is ever born. With this superior knowledge, God can place us all in our era of time, where we live, etc, as He see best. He knows before hand who will be the best for whatever job He wants done; thus, God can make it so without any violation to the design of the heart.

The word used in Psalms 33:15 translated ‘understands’ is a word used in Hebrew that is used to denote, in this case, God’s superior knowledge and expertise over everything with a superior understanding and consideration of everything possible.

You see, God knows all before all happens. He knows who will accept His call and who will reject it. Therefore, as a master potter, He can fashion those who accept into whatever He desires and can shape those that reject into whatever He desires, whenever and where ever in the history of time without any violation of how He designed the independence of the heart.

After all, it is His call of salvation, call of purpose, call of destiny, call of life. We all, saint, sinner, unbeliever, believer, still must accept or reject that call. God is not enslaved to our choices: Not at all. He calls, we respond. It is that simple.

He already foreknows our answer. God is sovereign. He can also unstop the ears of those who reject so that they can accept His call. Let us pray that God will unstop the ears of those unsaved so that they can hear and understand and in turn, turn toward God to be healed. [Matthew 13:18-23]

You have a purpose, pray.

Saturday, 20 May, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Here is a question I received by email. It is a great question that may help others pondering the same thing regarding other NDE accounts that I thought it should be posted for others to read.

Question:

Hi my name is PRL, and I’m searching for answers that seem to be confusing me. Well I have read many testimonies about hell and heaven, but I have also read about other people having near death experiences were they claim that they saw God but that there was no such thing as a hell. Many of the other NDE testimonies say that there is nothing to fear about death and some of the reports contradict the scriptures. Well I was wondering if you may be able to help or give an opinion about this. Thank you

Answer:

Hello PRL,

Yes, I can help give you insight into this matter. I will speak from a Christian perspective and I hope you do not mind if I do. It should make sense to you. When my experience occurred, I did not believe in hell or God, I was an Atheist with a naturalist world view. At that time, I never heard of Near Death Experience. After the experience, I went searching for answers, Christianity held those answers. My experience lined up with what is written in the Bible. Therefore, I’ll use it to help you understand the confusion that resides over the myriad examples of NDE’s.

Jesus reveals that Satan, Lucifer, the Devil is the father of lies, a deceiver, one who delights in slaying men, which has several connotations: slaying ideas, slaying dreams, slaying hope, slaying faith, slaying love, slaying as in murder, slays God’s words, and the list goes on. Examples of this are found in Jesus’ discussion with religious leaders of his day [John 8: 44]. Elsewhere, this entity tempts, seeks power, and is diabolically intelligent [Ezekiel 28: 12-19, Isaiah 14: 12-19 reveals more on this matter].

With this is mind, remember the chapter in my book, Dear Pudding. That woman first thought she arrived in paradise but later discovered it was not so. Likewise, myself, when I first arrived thought I was in paradise, heaven, but a sudden uneasiness swept over me as I awoke to the reality of that terrible place.

This should reveal something about NDE’s that ignore Hell, and tell that all will go to Heaven; plus, that there is no lasting hell, etc. These devilish host are all liars, and man slayers, they desire to slay faith in the one true God, they seek to deceive, and mislead many as they can in order to slay, and that in and of itself should reveal something to you concerning the lengths they’ll take to deceive.

Next, the bible reveals that there are degrees of recompense in hell, this would indicate that a person may not experience the fury of hell till later while others would immediately experience this, all based on what a person sows, that they also reap. Therefore, many NDE’s may be reporting a deception at first encounter because they were not there long enough to awake to their personal surroundings.

I have noticed in researching NDE’s that the duration of the event reveals much, as well as age of the person. A person who had an NDE as a child reports seeing heaven and never says anything about hell and grows into an adult with that mindset – this would make sense in the light of Matthew 18: 2-5 and Luke 18: 16-17.

Little children do not end up in hell. Their minds have not developed into an adult. I have not yet read an account of a little child seeing hell in an NDE, if there is one, please let me know. When the person grows into an adult, his or her interpretation of their NDE would be focused on the perspective of a child. They may tell people there is no hell - more out of a lack of knowledge than anything else.

Others, report short NDE’s, they may have seen Jesus or may have not. Note this; they never went beyond the veil but still go on to explain a sense of consuming love. Here, it is important also to note what type of love they encountered. Is it a syrupy sweet type of sugar coated love? Or is it a love that is beyond human words to describe?

You can describe a syrupy sweet type of sugar coated love. Many accounts go to great lengths explaining this type of love. Their accounts reveal that an entity told them to tell others about this great love. Usually, it is a sugary, non-threatening, remain as you are, everyone will make it to heaven and play forever in heaven type. Problem with this type of love, it cannot keep sin out of heaven, but rather welcomes it. Interesting in light of Proverbs 6:16-19.

However, God’s love is way beyond syrupy. It is not sugary sweet. There is a firmness and fairness too it as well a rest that is way too difficult to describe in human language of words. You can say that it is a love that purifies and changes one in a lasting manner, so deep and vast is it that it needs to be personally experienced. Those who have encounter God’s love are at loss for words to describe it adequately and admit it [Ephesians 3:17-19] and pray that you can experience it for yourselves.

Beware of those that do not admit this fact and describe God’s love it great details of flattery that exalt human worth to be loved rather than the fact that God loves because He is. He loves for no other reason than He exists.

Next, God’s love has a tendency to cause a person to become overwhelmed and fall on the ground [Revelations 1:17]. Therefore, pay attention to the type of love being describe emanating from an entity reported in any NDE. This reveals much and acts as good discernment of the source.

The devil can appear as an angel of light. Many have seen this angel. Their personal message is sugar sweet about the after life, so beware. You now know what measures the devil will take in order to slay.

Next, if NDE reports contradict the scriptures, then you know for certain they are from another source designed and crafted to slay in some manner or form. Lastly, other NDE’s accounts maybe of God but again, measure and discern them with the bible while keeping in mind how the devil seeks to slay. Many NDE’s slay the need for belief and fidelity to Jesus Christ. Salvation is mocked. This alone reveals the real source.

Hope this helps, God Bless!

B. W. Melvin

Monday, 29 May, 2006  
Blogger Crystal Lake said...

Hi Mr. Melvin:

This is going to sound aggressively skeptical, but I am very concerned over the church. I used to go to a congregation where everyone was so quick to believe every 'move of the Spirit' that they failed to test the spirits. It came to a point when a relative of mine uttered a 'prophecy' that if they did not change their ways, the church would..well..die. Most of the people did not listen to her, and now the church no longer exists. They were so hyped for 'revival' that they failed to practice discernment.

One of the major things that is wrong with Christians in general - and it's not just among charismatics - is that we are so quick to go wherever our itching ears are willing to take us.

Benny Hinn, for example, is a false prophet, but so many people will excuse it because he seems to speak the Word of God. I am concerned about how much compromise there is out there.

Well, sorry - I'm going off on a tangent. I just hope you understand where I'm coming from.

Here are the questions:

1. a) First of all, if the events that you describe really has taken place, how are we supposed to verify it? Other than the scripture references - of course.

b) How do we know that you aren't still an atheist/agnostic trying to make a buck off of 'gullible' Christians? Is this just a risk that we are supposed to take?

2. Why are you selling your story? Why not give it to us for free?

3. I've read excerpts of your book, and I have noticed how detailed it is. Do you think God helped you to remember or is your memory this excellent naturally?

4. Luke 16:19-31

Exc: "27 Then he said, 'I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father's house, 28 for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.' 29 Abraham said to him, 'They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.' 30 And he said, 'No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.' 31 But he said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.' "

I came to your site through hearing a call-in show in Canada, and then went web surfing from there. Bill Wiese claims to have suffered 23 minutes of hell. The purpose for this suffering was to provide a testimony for us because our culture - and even many believers - does not believe in hell. Well, indeed, Wiese was correct in saying that, and yet, that scripture above seems to imply that such trips to hell are worthless in bringing people to salvation. If so, that calls into question his whole experience, as it quite possibly calls into question yours. It is one of the major reasons why I'm skeptical of such stories.

In this world, God has provided for us everything that we need to come to Him. His Word, His Spirit, and the witness of the Creation.

So, forgive me if this has already been answered elsewhere, but what do you think is the purpose of your experience?

I did not need somebody's testimony of hell to come to salvation. In my days pre-Christ, such stories would have confused me further for the very simple reason that I can not possibly know whether your story (which conflicts with so many others) is true or not.

Sunday, 04 June, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Crystal Lakes,

I am so glad you asked what you did, I can’t answer for Benny Hinn. From my experience, I learned that it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. Anyone who preaches the gospel must answer to the Lord as to why and how and stand before him to be judged.

In my book, I ask the reader to judge my own experience as well as all others. Discern the spirits behind things. Now let me answer your questions:

+++Question - First of all, if the events that you describe really has taken place, how are we supposed to verify it? - Other than the scripture references - of course.

---Answer – I left that up to the reader to decide on his or her own. I wrote in a manner that postulates questions for the reader to research on his or her own. I avoided the thus sayeth the Lord style of writing and I hope this difference causes readers to dig into their own bibles. I want people to find Jesus and explore the nature and character of God.

I hope you and others will see this difference in style as it exposes something about the nature of the person writing. The thus sayeth the Lord style says look at the writer and just believe what they say. The other style says, check it out for yourself with what is in the bible, think for yourself, do not let others think for you.

As for concert evidence, you’ll have to take my word for it and judge for yourself. I did contract the disease Cholera and thus you can research the symptoms of it. I still suffer from some of the effects of it, damage to my heart and intestines. This serves as a personal mark to me that reminds me that we are to serve God in our infirmities sent to keep one humble. As for releasing personal medical records, maybe I will at a later date but for now – no. Look toward Jesus and not me. Judge based on the merit of the message. How fair can one be?

+++Question: How do we know that you aren't still an atheist/agnostic trying to make a buck off of 'gullible' Christians? Is this just a risk that we are supposed to take?

---Answer: A house divided against itself cannot stand. How can an atheist lead someone to Christ in the closing chapter of book? I am a born again Christian.

Also, I suggest going to this forum - http://discussions.godandscience.org/ - and looking up what B. W. writes there. B. W. is me.

+++Question: Why are you selling your story? Why not give it to us for free?

---Answer: As a matter of fact, I am currently in the process of making a CD available for free that contains my testimony. However, when one writes a book, a publisher will not publish it for free and that is why I cannot offer the book for free at this time. The Publisher owns right to sell it. Authors do not make money on books unless the publisher/distributors make sales. In the publishing world, they sell to make money. I am not rich. Do you know the salary of a Social Worker is in the USA ? If I was a millionaire the books would be free. I am not and needed a publisher instead. However, The CD recording will be for free.

+++Question: I've read excerpts of your book, and I have noticed how detailed it is. Do you think God helped you to remember or is your memory this excellent naturally?

---Answer: After it happened, I wrote notes, handwritten, when it was fresh. Many of the things did not make sense to me until I became born again. As I was writing the first manuscript from the handwritten notes, it was too painful to remember so I buried it a box for many years. In the meantime, I told a few friends my account and the word got around. I was asked to speak in churches to give my testimony. I volunteered with a Prison Ministry for 10 years and was asked to give my testimony there too. I did not go around boasting about it. I tried to hide the facts, more out of fear of being misunderstood. Giving my testimony, reluctantly, and writing things down helped to form the current book. Also, while writing the book manuscript, a flood of memories came back, from these God helped me remember.

As for - Luke 16:19-31 - "But he said to him, 'If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead.”

I find this to be true. Remember Jesus did raise people from the dead as recorded in the bible. From this, were they listened too? I do not know as no record exist concerning what they did. We do have record of Jesus Christ being raised from the dead and people, even now, refuse to listen to him. A servant is not above his master – that is something else Jesus said.

+++Question: I came to your site through hearing a call-in show in Canada, and then went web surfing from there. Bill Wiese claims to have suffered 23 minutes of hell. The purpose for this suffering was to provide a testimony for us because our culture - and even many believers - does not believe in hell. Well, indeed, Wiese was correct in saying that, and yet, that scripture above seems to imply that such trips to hell are worthless in bringing people to salvation. If so, that calls into question his whole experience, as it quite possibly calls into question yours. It is one of the major reasons why I'm skeptical of such stories.

In this world, God has provided for us everything that we need to come to Him. His Word, His Spirit, and the witness of the Creation.

So, forgive me if this has already been answered elsewhere, but what do you think is the purpose of your experience?

I did not need somebody's testimony of hell to come to salvation. In my days pre-Christ, such stories would have confused me further for the very simple reason that I can not possibly know whether your story (which conflicts with so many others) is true or not.

---Answer: No, you do not need to be threaten with Hell to be born again. Goodness of God leads one to repent. In my book, the message was to warn about hell. Its primary import was to reveal something about God’s nature and Character concerning God’s Foreknowing and Predestination in a manner that causes the reader to seek these truth out on there own by seeking God’s wisdom on these matters.

From my experience – it was seeing a small glimpse of God’s Glory, revealing His nature and character that made the most impact on me. This in and of itself displays why there is eternity for the just and unjust. It is my prayer that people can find rest in seeking after the Lord Jesus Christ in these matters and to know the love of Christ that is so deep and vast. Hell is real and so is Heaven there is a reason for both.

I hope this helps you understand a bit more about me and why I wrote my testimony. You see, I felt a strong compelling to write it as a testimony to God’s Glory. What God so chooses to do with it, is up to Him. We stand or fall according to God’s will. Our God and savior Jesus Christ, who came in the flesh, destroyed all the works of the evil one, can do with me as He wills.

As for now, I am a simple overworked, underpaid, social worker currently working with troubled and neglected youth knowing that God assigned me for a time and place to shine on earth, His glory. I am getting older now. Self seeking has no meaning to me; the only thing I care about is showing a glimpse of God’s eternal Glory and salvation. In time, I will pass way, as we all will. I will stand before the Lord and give an account. So will we all.

Monday, 05 June, 2006  
Anonymous Henry from Ohio said...

I read and enjoyed your book. However, I heard this guy on radio say that NDEs cannot happen because when you die you return to dust in a state of death sleep.

He got this from these two scriptures and I quote them from E-Sword - JPS bible for you:

Dan 12:2, "And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to reproaches and everlasting abhorrence."

Ecc 9:5-6, "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. As well their love, as their hatred and their envy, is long ago perished; neither have they any more a portion for ever in any thing that is done under the sun."

Now this guy went on to say that the dead have no memory - no nothing as Ecc states and from Daniel 12:1 the dead sleep till the ressurection.

I do not believe this as in the bible - Jesus tells of the Guy Lazarus and the rich man.That rich guy was awake and aware afteer dying. Other references as well tell us that the dead awake to judgement right after kicking the ol'bucket.

To me, NDE's are possible - how would you answer someone who poseses these two verses to you?

Can you shed light on this for me?

Thursday, 13 July, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Henry from Ohio asks:

I read and enjoyed your book. However, I heard this guy on radio say that NDEs cannot happen because when you die you return to dust in a state of death sleep.

Now this guy went on to say that the dead have no memory - no nothing as Ecclesiastes 9:5-6 states and from Daniel 12:1 the dead sleep till the resurrection...

...how would you answer someone who poses these two verses to you?

Can you shed light on this for me?
Thursday, 13 July, 2006

Answer:

Henry from Ohio,,,

Yes, You are correct. The bible does proclaim that the dead do indeed think and feel and experience things in the after life. Jesus own story of the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:22-31 speaks of this and should settle the matter. Also, Ezekiel 32:31 speaks of Pharaoh currently seeing his followers in hell. This alludes that he is not soul sleeping but conscious. Ezekiel 26:20 speaks of this. Genesis 49:33, Genesis 15:15 tell us that Abraham and Jacob will be united with their kin after death. Note Psalms 55:14 states that people do go alive into the afterlife.

The Old Testament teaches two basic areas [or levels] in the afterlife where people go – Hell and a place for the righteous ancestors of Abraham. Death is given in allegory of sleep, a place of shadows, and a place where recompense is meted out justly. Ecc 9:5-6 is not speaking of soul sleep or eternal unconsciousness but rather reveals the fact that after the passage of time, all memory of the deceased will vanish. Even the famous will be forgotten in the passage of time. That is all that Ecc 9:5-6 is telling us, nothing more.

If you take this literally to mean soul sleep, death sleep, eternal unconscious, until you are awoke in the later resurrection. To say otherwise makes Jesus out to be a liar, see Luke 16:22-31. What confuses people about Daniel 12:2 is that it speaks of the final resurrection mentioned in Revelations 20:14 of death and hell being tossed into the lake of fire. Notice that both death and hell exists currently in order for them to be tossed into the lake of fire. Those in hell will awake to this truth at an appointed hour. This lines up with Jesus’ Luke 16:22-31 revelation about the state of the departed as well as what he states elsewhere about hell and judgment.

Daniel 12:2, “…and many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to reproaches and everlasting abhorrence." JPS

When it speaks of ‘sleeping in the dust of the earth shall awake’ it is using allegory and this is explained in 1 Corinthians 15:35-58, note verses 51-52. Sleep is used as allegory for death – not as a state of being. It is often associated to describe the dead human body lying in state of rest, readied for burial.

In this manner, the dead look like they are sleeping. That is how this phrase about sleep referring to death came about. Daniel is speaking about the resurrection of the human body at the last trumpet, not a current state of being for the deceased soul and spirit of the departed. These immediately return to God for judgment as the bible teaches. I suggest you study this on your own.

If it was used to suggest a state of being, then the bible is in error and contradicts itself. Also this would make Jesus a sinning liar when he spoke about the Rich man and Lazarus. All scripture themes must line up with other scripture concerning the same theme. If not, taking one or two pet scriptures at the exclusion of others concerning the same theme produce error.

2 Corinthians 12:1-4 reveals that a person, most scholars think Paul was writing about himself, went to heaven and came back: Acts 14:19-20. If this was so, then when one dies, comes judgment and after judgment, then it is determined where one will spend eternity consciously either in heaven or hell until the final judgment. Note that Jesus in Revelations 1:17-18 has the keys of hell and death. Later in Revelations 20:14 it tells of hell and death being tossed into the lake of fire. This shows clearly that Hell exists now. Where do you want to spend eternity?

I suggest two books to read on this subject, “One Minute After You Die” by Erwin W. Lutzer and “Hell Under Fire” by Morgan and Peterson. These two books clear up this matter in a scholarly and clear ease to read manner.

Friday, 21 July, 2006  
Anonymous Jane said...

I just read your book and it is still in my mind as I go through my normal daily routine. It answered a lot of questions for me.

While reading it I wondered if the knowledge of what you saw and experienced could change the way I am living as a Christian in this world and would like to ask your opinion on a couple of things:

Even though I am a Christian I find it hard to stop myself from criticizing people and being judgemental now and then. I also find it hard to be really loving (not just pretend to be) towards people that I don't like much in my family.

Is there something from what you learned in your NDE which I could use to help me be a kinder more loving person every day? Is the answer to just die to self and live for God? I don't seem to be going too well with trying to be loving to people sometimes under my own strength.

I try to keep remembering how much I have been forgiven and loved by God and to do the same to others but then I catch myself being unloving - (eg being emotionally hurt by a relative and wanting to avoid them forever or being critical/judgemental/angry towards people). Do you have any thoughts on how I can really overcome these unwanted behaviour/attitudes? I keep being afraid that I am so ugly towards people that God might not let me into heaven.

And one more question if you don't mind... I have been "seeking" for years now what my purpose in life is and what I should do for a "career". I finally went back to school and ended up with a job working with (fixing) computers. I find this to be a reasonable job and occasionally I get to help someone with a computer problem. But I wonder if I should be doing something more helpful to people such as being a counsellor or a social worker or something. I don't know that I have what it takes to be a social worker but I wondered if you became a social worker yourself after your NDE and if you did was it because of that experience and why you picked social work? Could you have just as easily chosen a different 'non-people-helping' career and been ok with that choice? I keep telling myself I can help people with computer problems but it doesn't seem very "people helping / eternal" if you know what I mean.
I have noticed a lot of people who have NDEs end up becoming counsellors or social workers and suchlike. I wonder if I should be pursuing that kind of career myself so that I am doing something to really help people every day. What would your opinion on this be please?

Thanks for writing your book. I want to buy some extra copies soon to give to friends. And thanks for reading my long post :)

Monday, 18 September, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Dear Jane, You asked several questions I will answers these in 4 parts…

Part One - Jane Asked: Is there something from what your learned in your NDE which I could use to help me be a kinder more loving person every day? Is the answer to just die to self and live for God? I don't seem to be going too well with trying to be loving to people sometimes under my own strength.

B. W. Melvin – Reply: In regards to you question – concerning to learn how to be a kinder and more loving person every day; I will share a few insights that I have learned over the years from my experience that may help you. First, the concept of dying to self and live for God for many has become a self-work. When it becomes self effort, a person will tire of it easily. Yes, dying to self means more than just self denial and living for God means more than busy activities of good deeds, cheery oh attitudes of self works to please God.

First off, you stated a widespread dilemma that Christians face – do I love, live for God, deny self under my own strength or not? This has been taught as self effort as the norm in many churches. The way to please God is taught or alluded too as serving various church causes and needs by self effort. While this is only a small part of the program of serving God it is not the whole. Thus many Christians become discouraged and weary of all this busyness and thus as with any self work – you tire.

Ask the marathon runner – they have to stop running and rest. Why cannot we Christians do the same? Instead, if we do rest, this is considered sin or laziness and thus many feel condemned by not loving more, denying self more, or working harder for God. This produces burn out. Sounds like you may be feeling its effects?

What is the answer? How do you find that rest? What does it really mean to love as Christ, deny self, and live for God? Can it be so simple or so hard?

Proverbs 25:2 states this in the NKJV, “It is the Glory of God to conceal a matter, But it is the glory of kings to search out a matter.”

Bible tells Christians that we are kings and priests of God. God conceals so we will seek and find. What is His Glory? There is where you’ll discover your answer – God’s Glory. God’s glory is who he is, his nature, character, and wisdom. We were designed to be a reflection of God as it tells us in Genesis 1:26-31. We are not duplicates of God but are to reflect Him – reflect His nature, character, and wisdom where ever we are at. Shine it – that’s life.

This how you can love – how does God love? Seek this out – would God love as I do? Or as He would? Would Jesus act like me? How does God love? Search out this matter and you will do well.

God shows justice, that is part of his character. Justice is not confined to mean punishment – it is how one collects all data before acting out and making a judgment. It looks at why this person acted this way – what factors caused behavior – was I at fault for it – was it selfish motivated?

God is even handed, fair, loving, kind, merciful, righteous, just, exercises true justice, exercises correct and displays judgments at the appropriate time, God is not a push over, He is firm and fair.

Here is your answer – shine these where ever you have been assigned. Just rest – do not try so hard. It comes easy as you seek how God is studying his nature, character and wisdom from your own bible study, quiet time, prayer time, and just simply asking our Lord and savior Jesus Christ to help. His yoke is easy and burden is light. This is a new lifestyle – measuring your actions, thoughts, works if they are truly a reflection of God’s Glory or you.

Learn to practice the 1 John 1:4-10 and 1 John 2:1-6 lifestyle. Confess you failures and sins daily regarding this matter and you will find that rest I speak of. Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, his rule, reign, dominion meaning how God governs, rules, according His nature, character, and wisdom, and all these things shall be added unto you. Look neither here nor there but look within – for there is God’s kingdom within you. Who rules within, shines without, and affects others by the light so shining. Matthew 6:33, Matthew 7:7-11, Luke 17:21, and Romans 14:17-19.

Monday, 18 September, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Part Two - Jane asked: I try to keep remembering how much I have been forgiven and loved by God and to do the same to others but then I catch myself being unloving - (eg being emotionally hurt by a relative and wanting to avoid them forever or being critical/judgmental/angry towards people). Do you have any thoughts on how I can really overcome these unwanted behavior/attitudes? I keep being afraid that I am so ugly towards people that God might not let me into heaven.

B. W. Melvin – Reply: Again, do not try so hard. We all have been hurt by others. It takes time to release those that hurt us. Let the Lord deal with them. All I can say is too learn what it means to seek out God’s Glory on the issues you face. It is not that hard – ask if the Lord would think and act in the manner we would or not. When the answer is no – rest and confess the 1 John 1: 4-10, and 1 John 2:6 lifestyle. This is best learned by periods of practice and times of refreshing rest.

As for fearing not entering Heaven – read John 10:27-29. No one is able to snatch you away from God’s Hands. Jesus said this. Others debate that this cannot be true. However stick with what Jesus says and not man’s ideas: those that come to Jesus will not be cast away. Also, read Matthew 13:23 those who hear the word of God’s Kingdom and Understand it will bear good fruit in due time. Understand God’s kingdom is how God acts and governs according to his nature, character, and wisdom. Understand we are to learn to reflect this – shine. It takes time to grow. Hardship, toils, temptations, suffering, pain, joy, happiness, etc teach us what 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 reveals about shining…

Monday, 18 September, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Part Three - Jane Asked: And one more question if you don't mind... I have been "seeking" for years now what my purpose in life is and what I should do for a "career". I finally went back to school and ended up with a job working with (fixing) computers. I find this to be a reasonable job and occasionally I get to help someone with a computer problem.

But I wonder if I should be doing something more helpful to people such as being a counselor or a social worker or something. I don't know that I have what it takes to be a social worker but I wondered if you became a social worker yourself after your NDE and if you did was it because of that experience and why you picked social work? Could you have just as easily chosen a different 'non-people-helping' career and been ok with that choice? I keep telling myself I can help people with computer problems but it doesn't seem very "people helping / eternal" if you know what I mean.

B. W. Melvin – Reply: This is a hard question for me to answer for you. God gives us each talents and from these we learn not to envy anothers gift. Use what you have now for your family’s needs and loved ones needs. Provide for them with that paycheck honestly earned. Uplift those closest to you first and forget trying to save the entire world now.

God placed you where ever you are at – shine there. The rest comes in due time. Faith is like the smallest of seeds that slowly grows in all kinds of weather into a large tree that provides shade and rest for the weary. It takes time to grow. Begin where you are at.

Monday, 18 September, 2006  
Blogger B. W. Melvin said...

Part Four - Jane Asked: I have noticed a lot of people who have NDEs end up becoming counselors or social workers and suchlike. I wonder if I should be pursuing that kind of career myself so that I am doing something to really help people every day. What would your opinion on this be please?

Thanks for writing your book. I want to buy some extra copies soon to give to friends. And thanks for reading my long post :)

B. W. Melvin – Reply: This seems to be a common theme with NDE survivors and I am not sure why this is. Maybe a touch from the beyond shows us that what we once thought was important was not and from this we see what is. For a Christian it is shining Christ.

God Bless and any more questions - just ask!

Thank you for you kind words!

Monday, 18 September, 2006  

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