I am little bit confused about the following:
- Christ’s decent to Hades on Holy Saturday
- What happens to people who die now?
- What happens at the Second Coming of Christ?
All dead people prior to Chirst, were in a state of the dead, known as Sheol in Hebrew and Hades in Greek. Hades is further sub-divided into ‘Hades proper’ and ‘Bosom of Abraham’. Prior to Christ, the Old Testament righteous dead were in the Bosom of Abraham and the unrighteous were in Hades proper. This is what we see in the Parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus. This Parable is set in the time prior to the crucifixion of Christ.
So far am I right?
Now, my questions:
1) On Holy Saturday, when we say Christ descended to Hades, did he descend to Hades-Proper (the place where the Rich Man was) or to the Bosom of Abraham (the place where Lazarus was) ? Did Christ destroy Hades? If he did destroy Hades, how can people who die now go to Hades?
2) I know Paradise and Heaven are not the same reality. Heaven happens only at the second coming of Christ right? So is Paradise and the Bosom of Abraham the same reality?
3) So when Christ set the captive in Hades (Hades Proper and the Bosom of Abraham) free, where did they go to? What was the state of those souls? They can’t be in Heaven, as it does not happen till the Second coming of Christ. So when we say Christ set the captives free in Hades, do we mean that the souls in Hades-proper were also promoted to the Bosom of Abraham? If so, did nothing really change for who were already in the Bosom of Abraham (for example Lazarus)?
4) When Christ said to the thief on the right hand that he will be in Paradise; did Christ mean the Bosom of Abraham?
5) Where do people who die in the present time go? Do they go to 'Hades' and 'Bosom of Abraham' the same way as before the resurrection of Christ, waiting for the Second Coming of Christ? If so what really changed with Christ's descend to Hades?
6) At the Second Coming of Christ, the divine energy of Christ is going to be felt by everybody, with the good enjoying it as light (Heaven) and the evil suffering from it as fire (Gehenna). Is this right?
Please give me positive confirmation for things that I got right, feedback and correction on where I have understood incorrectly and answer my questions.
Mathew G M