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<< In Touch with Dr. Charles Stanley

In Touch - Jan. 19, 2010

  • 2010 Jan 19
  • COMMENTS

January 19
A Word About Purgatory 

2 Corinthians 5

A great many people believe falsely in purgatory—a miserable place where people supposedly go after death. In order to advance to heaven, a person supposedly must either suffer long enough to make restitution for his or her sins or be prayed out by loved ones still living. The doctrine is an unbiblical lie, because purgatory is a thinly veiled second chance for people to get into heaven.

There is not a single verse with which to defend the false theology of purgatory. In fact, the very idea of a second route to heaven runs counter to God's redemptive plan. Jesus Christ was the substitute for you and me, and His death paid our sin-debt. He obtained our eternal redemption with His blood (Heb. 9:12). If there is a place where people can go to suffer for their own sins—in other words, pay their own penalty—then God sending His Son to die makes no sense.

In John 14:2, Jesus told the disciples that He was going away to prepare a place for His followers. Nowhere in Scripture do we find any mention of a detour into misery where we "earn" a pass into heaven. The Bible says that believers are either at home in the body, or absent from it and present with the Lord. There is simply no in-between stopover.

I respect the right to believe as one chooses. However, I have a responsibility to present biblical truth. Those who reject Christ get no second chance after death. They are eternally separated from God. But whoever receives salvation is completely forgiven of all sin and guaranteed an eternity with Him.

For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.

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Used with permission from In Touch Ministries, Inc. © 2009 All Rights Reserved.

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