How many times have you heard the statement, “I was this many years old when I found out…?” Most of the time, when we hear or say this, we are referring to a tip or trick that someone shares with us. I shared a tip the other day on how I cut up an onion, and someone said that statement to me when they watched the video. I also uttered those words about a month ago when talking to my sister, so I thought that I would share a little bit of our conversation.
When I think of religious figures in the Bible, images of Peter, Paul, and Mary Magdalene come to my mind. The disciples who were lucky enough to have known and followed Jesus were true believers. They believed, trusted, and spread the Good News of Jesus, even after His death on the cross.
But, there were many other religious people in the Bible who came before Jesus, such as Abraham, Moses, and David. These people all believed in the Messiah, but they never got the opportunity to meet Him in person. They never witnessed His healings or His miracles, but they still believed in Him.
We know that Jesus was sent to Earth by His Father and our Lord God to be a living sacrifice. His ultimate sacrifice of dying on the cross for OUR sins is how we now have the ability to reach Heaven. There has never been, nor will ever be, anyone that was without sin other than Jesus.
Jesus’ death on the cross covered our sins, but what about the people who died before Jesus’ arrival? What happened to them?
I had never considered this before my conversation with my sister. These people were devoted believers, so I just assumed that they would be in Heaven with the Lord, but until Jesus died, that wasn’t possible.
19 “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. 20 But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, 21 desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
24 “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. 26 And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’
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 had read this passage many times, but I had not thought of Abraham’s bosom part. Abraham’s bosom was in Hell, but it was not a place of torment. There was a great gulf between Abraham’s bosom and Hell, and the two places could not be reached by the other. Before Jesus died on the cross for our sins, the true believers couldn’t get to Heaven, so they were sent to wait in comfort to Abraham’s bosom.
This is the part that really blew my mind. After Jesus died, He went down to Abraham’s bosom to take those who were believers and died before Him to Heaven with Him.
8 Therefore He says:
“When He ascended on high,
He led captivity captive,
And gave gifts to men.”
9 (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.)
Honestly, if Biblical Scholars who are way smarter than me didn’t tell me what this verse said, I wouldn’t have a clue. But, according to what I have read, Jesus descended to the portion of Hell called Abraham’s bosom and took those who were waiting for Him to Heaven.
Can you imagine being in Heaven one day and hearing firsthand all of the wonderful stories that Abraham, Moses, and David have to tell. Won’t it be wonderful there???
Were you this many years old, or am I the only one who wasn’t aware of how the Old Testament believers reached Heaven?
The faithful looked forward to the day when the Messiah would come. Not only do we get to look back and see that He came, but we can also look forward to when He comes again. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait!
To God Goes The Glory!
Have A Blessed Day!
Have questions? Here’s an article about Abraham’s Bosom.