Creed or Bible?

Posted: December 28, 2011 in Thoughts from the Elders

On Christmas day, my wife Moriah’s Grandmother sat the whole family down. She insisted she had some things that she had to share with them. You see Gloria is readying those around her for her life here to come to an end; she is ready to go spend time with her Creator and the family she so misses that have already departed this earth. She is an amazing Christian woman who desires to see everyone she ever meets; with her in eternal glory singing praises to our King. She has many great scriptures locked in her heart and shared many of them with the family. The thing that she shared that really struck me personally was her pointing to Jesus descending into Hell after his crucifixion.

Whoa hold on there, Christ descended to Hell? Where did that come from? Pull out the bible, where does it say Christ spent three days in hell? I found plenty of places that God is given power over hell. Christ himself declares his power in Revelation 1:17-18 “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last.  I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.”

So where do we get the idea that he descended to hell? Take a look at the Apostles Creed:

I believe in God,

the Father almighty,

Creator of heaven and earth,

and in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,

who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,

born of the Virgin Mary,

suffered under Pontius Pilate,

was crucified, died and was buried;

he descended into hell;

on the third day he rose again from the dead;

he ascended into heaven,

and is seated at the right hand of God the Father almighty;

from there he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,

the holy catholic Church,

the communion of saints,

the forgiveness of sins,

the resurrection of the body,

and life everlasting. Amen.

There it is, but the Apostles Creed is NOT the bible? So did Christ spend three days in Hell? The best description I can find is in the Old Testament description of the grave, or Sheol. Sheol was the common destination of both the righteous and the unrighteous flesh. So Jesus would have passed into what the Jews understood to be death. He was not tormented in Hell, which is the name given to the place some will spend eternity after the great judgment.

However Jesus promised the criminal crucified beside him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43) That is the love of our God, “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)

That’s all I have for ramblings on that topic. Merry Christmas to all!

I’d like to leave you with Hebrews 11:6 “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

 

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