Sam Frost 09-05-2003
Copyright © The Last Trumpet — Post-Trib Research Center
NOTE: As of 09-01, both parties have agreed to remove the 2000 word limit for each submission in this debate.
Here is the typical way futurists attack preterists: start with the most difficult topic, use the word “clearly” a lot, and malign the view as a complete denial of God’s “clear” word. Preterism is a system. As such, it begins with a starting point, a middle, and an ending. Dispensationalism does the same thing. It, too, is a system. Once the framework is seen, then the added details can be filled in from the texts. The reason why many do not understand how Dispensationalists can do what they do with certain “clear” texts that would appear to contradict their assertions is because they are operating under the rubric of their assumed framework. If the framework is true, and one comes across a Scripture that appears to contradict it, then one must do one of two things: reject the framework, or make the Scripture “fit”. A builder starts with a blueprint, first. Then he adds the material to fit the plan. This is why the holy church has called this task systematic theology. It is never a question as to whether or not we have frameworks, but always a question of whether or not our frameworks are correct.
Dispensationalism has opted for the hermeneutical principle of what it calls literalism. That is, when the Bible says that Jesus is coming back on a white horse, then it means that Jesus is coming back on a white horse. A real life white horse. Now, maybe Tim is not that type of Dispy (he claims to be a progressive dispensationalist, which is another way of saying, “let me distance myself from Scofield and Darby just a bit”). This “distancing” is because the original tenets of classic dispensationalism are absurd. To charge me with being “mystical” because I don’t take “literally” that Jesus will be returning on a white stud, but that it is a symbol of victory and purity, is simply nonsense. White stands for purity, and a horse is a biblical symbol of power; maybe not so much in our days, since we have cars and tanks. Tim’s first line, then, is to pit “mystical” with “literal.” This is just silly. The history of God’s holy church has employed the term in a very meaningful manner. The Reformed and Presbyterian theologians teach a doctrine known as the ‘mystical union of Christ and the believer.’ Robert L. Reymond’s celebrated A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith (Thomas Nelson, 1998 - pp.738,739) discusses this thoroughly. Reymond subscribes to the Westminster Confession of Faith (1647), hailed as a landmark work of Christian theology. In that Confession one would find Question 66: ‘What is that union which the elect have with Christ? Answer: …they are spiritually and mystically, yet really and inseparably, joined to Christ as their head and husband.’ It is clear from its theological usage that “mystical” means “unseen” and “invisible” but nonetheless real. Let me put this in the clearest terms possible: I cannot “see” God, nor can I “touch” Christ. “Blessed are those who do not see me, yet believe” (John 20.29). I am “in Christ” (literally or in terms of ‘mystery’?). Paul says of this union, “this is a profound mystery (Greek - musterion), but I am talking about Christ and his church” (Eph 5.32). In I Cor 10.1-11 twice uses the word “type” for interpreting the Hebrew Bible, and the term “spiritual” is used three times. There is a difference, then, between using the term “mystical” (or “spiritual”) and the religious philosophy of mysticism. Mystical is not a bad word, theologically speaking, and has a long, long positive usage.
Having said that, Tim gives the appearance that to speak in “figurative” language, or interpret the Bible in various passages in this way is somehow dangerous. But, as seen in the example above with Paul, and the entire letter of Hebrews, the biblical authors were doing just that. The tabernacle of Moses was a “type” of the true tabernacle in heaven. The holy of holies of Moses’ construction was a type of the true holy of holies we are bidden to enter. Are you really there? Are you really in the holy of holies? If you answer “yes” to this question, then welcome to “mystical” theology. That is, you can’t “see” the holy of holies with your eyeballs, but you know by faith according to the knowledge given to us by the Bible that you, as a believer, are truly there in the presence of God through Christ. This is your covenant status as far as God is concerned. And if that is the case, then it is certainly true that where He is (Christ), there you are, also. This brings me to consider what it was that being raised from the dead. Basically, I will not deal point by point with Tim’s first response, but will deal with it in my closing statement. Here is the problem, and I want you to read this carefully: The TIMING of the resurrection of the dead determines the NATURE of the resurrection of the dead. Tim has first assumed the NATURE of the resurrection (individual, physical, reanimation of DNA), and must, therefore, define the TIMING passages as irrelevant in some way. Preterism, as I will show, determines the TIMING of the resurrection and then infers the NATURE. Thus, Tim, in all good scholarship, I cannot answer your objections without FIRST determining the TIMING. Since the Bible does not lie, nor can it contradict itself, if it says something is going to happen, then it is going to happen, and if it does not happen, then the Bible is false.
It is certain that Israel under the old covenant did not truly “enter” the holy of holies. Hebrews 11.39,40 makes this plain: ‘These (Old Testament saints) were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God planned something better for us (first century generation) so that TOGETHER with us, THEY would be made PERFECT.’ This is eschatology in the Bible in a nutshell. What Israel (“they”) was waiting for was the promise of perfection, or eternal life with God, reconciled completely, having their sins forgiven. Christ’s blood effects this promise. He “became a minister to the circumcision (the Israelites) in order to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs” (Rom. 15.8). Did Jesus confirm these promises? What, then, would have been the result to those old testament Israelites cited in Hebrews 11 who had “faith” but did not “receive that which was promised?” Would they now be able to “receive it”? Would ‘the dead ones’ now be able to receive what had been promised to them? Not only them, but “us” in Paul’s own time were “receiving” it as well. What was it that they were “receiving?” Hebrews 12, the very next chapter, answers: “Therefore, since we are (present tense) receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken¸ let us be thankful’ (12.28). Okay, let’s get this straight: the first generation of Christian Jews claimed that they were “receiving the kingdom” (paralambano is the Greek word for ‘receiving’). Why would they make this claim at that time shortly before A.D. 70? Jesus came and preached “Repent! For the kingdom of God has drawn near. The time has come” (Mk 1.14,15). The “time” has come, the “kingdom” was near, and the first century believers stated that they were “receiving” the kingdom, that “together with us (first century believers), they (old testament believing saints who were long, long dead) would be made perfect.” The “promise” was “confirmed” by Christ which was “made to the patriarchs.” This “promise” was being realized in the first century. It was the promise of perfection, the promise of entering boldly into the holy of holies, the promise of being in God’s presence, the promise that he would be their God, and they would be his people, and he would dwell with them in peace forever; something Israel never, never had under the “administration of the death engraved on stones” (II Cor 3.7). The law made them “slaves” but Christ “sets them free” and makes them “sons.” Keep your thoughts on that contrast.
Do the prophets of Israel give them any reason for thinking that their time was the time for “receiving the kingdom?” Certainly. Daniel 7 specifically states our case. Daniel sees four beasts/kingdoms. The first is Babylon, the second is the Medes/Persian empire, the third is the Grecian empire under Alexander, and the fourth is Rome. Daniel does not identify Rome (the others are identified), but one is under great pains to prove that it is not Rome when all the other kingdoms followed in sequential order. Most commentaries, most of those in church history, agree that the fourth empire is Rome. This certainly comports with Revelation 13, where one of the “heads” was then ruling in John’s day (Rev.17.10). John lived during the reign of the “fourth beast.”
But, what does Daniel “see” during this reign? First off, in Dan. 2.44 we find, “in the days of those kings (of the fourth empire), the God of heaven will establish his kingdom.” There’s the word “kingdom.” In Daniel 7, following the same pattern of 4 world empires, Daniel sees the saints “receiving (paralambano) the kingdom.” 7.18 states, “but the saints of the Most High will receive (future tense) the kingdom and will possess it forever.” Further, “..until the Ancient of Days came and pronounced judgment in favor of the saints of the Most High, and the time came when they possessed the kingdom” (7.22). The “time” had “drawn near” and the “kingdom of God” was “at hand” when Jesus preached during “the days of those kings” of the fourth Roman Empire. The saints during those days were promised to “receive the kingdom.” The author of Hebrews wrote that they WERE receiving the kingdom that cannot be shaken! When? “During the days of THOSE KINGS.” Daniel calls this time the “time of the end” and the “times, time and half a time” (7.25), the same figure used in Revelation, were John wrote that “the time was at hand” during the “days of those kings,” one of whom “is now” (Rev 17.10). All the elements are there: the son of man on the “clouds of heaven” (Da 7.13); the “ancient of days” (Da 7.13) and his description (Da 7.9-10 compared to the exact same description of Jesus “on the Lord’s Day” in Rev. 1.13-16). The “books were opened” and here we find the same imagery in Revelation 20.11-15, which brings us to the “resurrection of the dead.” When would the saints “receive the kingdom”? “During the days of those kings.” Were the first century believers “receiving the kingdom”? According to the author of Hebrews, yes they were. Were they living in the “days of those kings”? Any other answer other than “yes” would be in direct contradiction to God’s word.
Briefly, then, Daniel was told to “close up and seal the words of the scroll until the time of the end” (12.4). This “time of the end” is linked with Daniel 12.1,2 and the resurrection from the dead. John, on the other hand, is told by the angel to “Do not seal up the words of the prophecy of this book, because the time is near” (Rev.22.10)! Why was Daniel told to seal it up? Because the “time was afar off” (Dan. 10.14). The book was to remain “sealed” until when? “The time of the end.” Was it “unsealed” by the “lamb of God” in Rev. 7? Yes sir, definitely. Was John told not to seal it up? Yes. Why? “Because the TIME is AT HAND.” Daniel lived 500 years before John. John was living in the “days of those kings” when God would “establish his kingdom” and the saints would “receive the kingdom” and God would “dwell with them and be their God, and they will be his people” (Rev. 21.3). They would be his “sons” (21.7). They would “inherit” the New Jerusalem (21.7), the kingdom would be THIERS, and brothers and sisters, it is now OURS through Jesus Christ.
In keeping with the biblical pattern of thought, locating the “time of the end” and noting that John wrote during that time, then what connection is their between Jerusalem’s fall in A.D. 70 and the “time for judging the dead”? The preterist interpretation sees Rev. 11 as a prophecy that echoes Jesus’ Olivet Discourse (Mt. 24) concerning what “that generation” would live to see. The city of Jerusalem in Rev. 11 is likened to “Sodom and Gomorrah and Egypt” (11.8). The “Great City” as it is called (11.8) is “where our Lord was crucified.” Where was Jesus crucified? Jerusalem. Does John identify this city again? Yes. In Rev. 17.18: ‘The woman that you saw is THE GREAT CITY that rules over the kings of the land.” The Harlot is Jerusalem, riding on the power of Rome (the beast), until Rome turns against her and “burns her with fire” (Rev.17.16). If anyone has a problem with the Harlot/Jerusalem sitting over “multitudes, peoples, nations and languages” (17.15) then he need only read Acts 2.5-12 and like passages.
Now, the Great City of where the Lord was crucified had become a Great Whore (Ezekiel 22-24 and like passages, a common name the prophets called Adulterous Israel), and it’s “time was at hand” when God would “cast out the bondwoman with her children” and the saints would be “manifested” as “sons of God” in contrast to those who “claimed to be Jews” and who “claimed to be sons” but were “wolves in sheep’s clothing.” A.D. 70 made CLEAR who were the people of God and who were the hypocrites. The Great City was destroyed in Rev. 11.13, and as a result, the seventh angel sounded the “last trumpet” and “the TIME HAD COME for judging the DEAD, and for REWARDING the saints” (11.18). The resurrection of the dead occurred, then, when “the great city” was destroyed, when the “administration of the DEATH engraved in stones” (II Cor 3.7) finally “vanished” (Heb. 8.13) and the new “administration of the Spirit” (II Cor. 3.9) brought “righteousness.” The “crown of righteousness” was given to those “living” as well as those saints who had died from Adam to Christ, and those who had fallen asleep in Christ before His “coming again” in A.D. 70.
What I have shown is the unequivocal testimony of Scripture as to WHEN the resurrection would occur, along with the receiving of the kingdom, along with being made perfect, along with the promised being confirmed, along with the status of sonship, the reconciled dwelling of God with man and man with God, the era of “righteousness” by faith, and the like. What I have done is this: since the Bible is quite “clear” as to WHEN the resurrection of the dead was to occur, then the general traditional opinion is in error on this matter. Rather than BEND the statements of the framework of the WHEN to fit the false notions of the TRADITION, I accuse the TRADITION of making a mistake, but must conform to the word of God. God’s word never errs.
Now, before continuing, I must thank Tim Warner for graciously allowing me the space it takes to deal with the his opening arguments. I am gaining a respect for Tim as a brother in the Lord the more that I correspond with him. I do not say this to make friends. We are adamantly opposed to each other on this view. However, after a series of e-mails, I gather that Tim is a forthright, honest man that is deeply concerned for biblical truth.
I have already dealt with some issues in Tim’s opening remarks concerning “mystical” language and Daniel 12.1,2. The timing determines the nature. With that in mind I will briefly tackle the various references he gave from the Bible. My sources, rather than bore the reader with tedious Hebrew and Greek exegesis, will be George Bush and N.T. Wright. Bush, professor of Hebrew, New York City University, wrote a book in 1845 called Anastasis. Or The Doctrine of the Resurrection of the Body: Rationally and Scripturally Considered (Wiley and Putnam). Bush was not a preterist and held to a future resurrection and second coming of Christ. By his monograph, he is quite conservative. N.T. Wright, Canon Theologian at Westminster Abbey, and taught at Oxford, Cambridge and McGill Universities, wrote The Resurrection of the Son of God (Fortress Press, 2003). I deliberately chose Bush and Wright to span over a hundred years of conservative, non-preterist scholarship (though Wright could be called a “partial-preterist”). Wright is conservative, affirms the resurrection of Christ, bodily, and affirms the resurrection of the physical body of the believer and eventual renewal of the universe at the Second Coming of Christ. Neither of these men take the passages Tim uses from the OT in the way he does. What I will show is that Tim prooftexts these passages from their context and makes them appear in such a way that only a fool would deny his interpretation.
First, Job 19.25-27. For sake of space, I will not quote it. Look it up yourself. Tim simply quotes the NKJV. Wright quotes the AV, NEB, NJB, NRSV to reveal the problematic nature of the verse. Bush added to the problem by quoting the LXX (Septuagint) and the Latin Vulgate renderings. After a staggering analysis, both men come to the conclusion: this is not a prooftext for bodily, individual reanimation as Tim says. They are not preterists. They are futurists. They affirm a Second Coming in the future in which the redeem will be rewarded, against my preterism. The most common interpretation is that Job was restored, his flesh was renewed, he did “see” God, and God did reward him in the end. The point of the book: Job’s redeemer does indeed live, and he redeems not by Job’s law-observance, but by His grace (see Job 33.23-30). The great Albert Barnes, whose commentaries still maintain a worth after over 100 years of their being rendered, and who maintained the bodily resurrection of the believer denied that this passage teaches such a thing.
Second, Isaiah 26.19-21. A quick glance from my NIV Study Bible notes that this verse is a “reference to the restoration of Israel (see Eze 37.11-12)-perhaps including the resurrection of the body (italics mine).” Now, the NIV Study Bible is hardly preteristic. But, the little word “perhaps” lets me know that this passage as well has been sharply debated among conservative, futurist Evangelicals. Why? Isn’t is “clear” like Tim says? Well, no. The context is the problem as Bush and Wright, both fully familiar with what has been said on this passage, point out, and the NIV Study Bible alludes to (note, it says see Eze 37.11-12, another passage Tim uses). Isaiah 26.14 states that “they (the wicked) are now dead, they live no more; those departed spirits do not rise. You punished them and brought them to ruin.” Albert Barnes, as Bush noted, states that this is in reference to their Babylonian captors (though Barnes does state that this may possibly be in reference to a literal resurrection, Bush states that such cannot be the case. Barnes argued that the illustration of a dead corpse coming from the grave is meant here, the illustration nonetheless could have its referent in something that will indeed happen. To argue like this, states Barnes, is to say that Jesus will one day literally give each a “morning star”! A real actual star! Imagine, one day we will each have our own star.). Isaiah sees this doom coming upon Israel from the hand of Babylon, and he sees their exile, but, like Jeremiah, also sees their restoration. Babylon will not be restored, but Israel “will live again.” They did, under Nehemiah, Ezra, Haggai, and Zechariah. The language of “exile” is seen in Isaiah 5.13,14 as a “going down to the grave.” Therefore, to be “raised from the grave” is to be “regathered to the Land.” The language, it is generally agreed today, is metaphorical in nature and is not a prooftext for a reanimation of the body after thousands of years of decay. Note that when I say “in general” that the “general” church is not preteristic.
Third, Ezekiel 37.12-14. This passage explicitly states that it is a spiritual metaphor for the “regathering of Israel” and “making the two, one.” In that day, David would be “king” over them. Jesus is David, and ascended to David’s throne as Peter SPECIFICALLY said in Acts 2.29-33. The “fleshly” throne on earth was merely a “type” of the “spiritual throne” in heaven upon which Jesus sat. Jerusalem below was now transferred to Jerusalem above. Tim is still waiting for Jesus to sit on a slab of cement in Jerusalem below. Paul quotes from this very chapter of Ezekiel (37.27 to be exact) in II Corinthians 6.16. In Paul’s usage, the day of Ezekiel had ALREADY ARRIVED and WAS ARRIVING through the Church, the Body of Christ, through which God dwelled with his people in peace through Christ’s reconciling work at Calvery. This is what Ezekiel SAW. Tim sees this as a “mystical” application of Ezekiel. Paul saw it as a “spiritual” application of Ezekiel, for he was living when the “spiritual man” discerned “spiritual things” against “carnal” interpretations, and in the time of “the Spirit” when the Father’s followers would worship “in Spirit and in truth” not in “Jerusalem” nor in “Samaria” but in “Spirit and in truth.” Tim does not like this, but the Bible is replete with it. The “natural” came “first” and “then the spiritual.” It is clear that Tim’s scheme is “natural ->spiritual->natural again” whereas for Paul it is “natural->spiritual” period. We are in the “spiritual blessings of Israel” and have “every spiritual blessings in the heavenlies.” What Tim has to do here in this passage is deny that Jesus has not yet fulfilled his role as Davidic king and lord (37.24), that God has not made “the two one” (37.17 compared to John 11.52; Ephesians 2.15), that the “Spirit” has not been poured out (37.14) when Peter said that “all the prophets” foretold the days of the Spirit’s outpouring, and that his days were the days of that fulfillment! (Acts 2.17; 3.24). Even here, the NIV Study Bible, a mainstream, Evangelical Bible that is hardly preteristic, states “”These words make it clear that the Lord is not speaking here of a resurrection from the dead but of the national restoration of Israel” (37.14, note)! It’s a symbolic representation, and hardly a prooftext for Tim’s beliefs.
Finally, he made a reference to Daniel 12.1,2 which I have already commented on above. Timing determines the nature, and the “time of the end” for Daniel 12.9 was closed to Daniel, but made open to John because in John “the time was at hand.” The burden of proof is on the person to demonstrate that actual “time” here is not the “normal sense” of the passage. But, let’s look at this verse further and apply Tim’s “literal” reasoning. “Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will be awakened.” Does Tim believe in “soul-sleep”? Am I, at death, merely trapped “in the dust of the earth” until I “awake” from my sleep in the casket? Is that where Christians “go” when they die? To the dust of the earth? Is that where they remain until the resurrection? If you deny any of these questions, then YOU CANNOT TAKE THIS PASSAGE LITERALLY. Jehovah’s Witnesses and Seventh Day Adventists do take it literally. It SAYS “sleep”! Therefore, we SLEEP in the casket, in the “dust of the earth” until we AWAKE. I am sure that Tim will reject such a doctrine, but he can only do so by comparing OTHER SCRIPTURES to this verse to DETERMINE THE NATURE of what “sleep” means here. Taken BY ITSELF this passage could very well argue soul sleep and that I, when I die, literally stay asleep in the casket until I awake at the sound of a loud trumpet.
I don’t want to take much more time of the reader, but none of the verses Tim gives here indicates proof-positive a “reanimation of the dead corpse” as he stated. Warner goes on to consider Jesus’ “view” of the resurrection in Mat. 22.23-ff. He does not refer to the parallel passage in Luke 20.27-40. None the less, he argues that the Sadducees are assuming that “resurrection was merely a restoring to life, and the natural order under the Law of Moses” and that if “resurrection did occur, would merely restore the former order”. But, Tim argues that resurrection is not to the former life and not a life “bound by the Law, or marriage, or….procreation”. Tim, that’s the whole point of the narrative. In Luke’s parallel account Jesus contrasts the “age” with the “age to come” and that in the “age to come” God’s “sons” will be produced not through “marriage” but through “the power of God” which they denied. In effect, John 1.12,13 makes the point: “to all who believed in his name he gave the right to becomes SONS, sons born not of BLOODS, nor of HUMAN DECISION nor of a HUSBAND’S WILL, but BORN OF GOD.” How will “sons” be raised up in the “age to come” was the question. Jesus answered, “they will be SONS OF GOD.” Under the old covenant sons were “raised up” (the Greek word in the Septuagint is connected to “anastasis”, the Greek word for resurrection, for “raising up seed”) to keep the name alive of the father. If the husband dies with “no seed”, then the brother must marry her to “raise up his seed”, that is, in the text of Deut. 25.5-10, a “son” was to be born to the wife for the protection of the “name” of the husband. Would this continue under the “age to come”? Jesus says “no.” That is not how God will “raise up sons”, not by marriage, nor through procreation, but by God’s power. Nothing is said here at all about “the reanimation of the dead corpse”, which is Tim’s view. Interestingly enough, Tim is a dispensationalist that believes in the “restoration of Israel” in the Millennium and that the “law” will be in full operation in order to be “literal” when it comes to interpreting Ezekiel 40-48. Here he says the “law” will not apply! He has shot himself in his own foot without realizing it! Will only “part” of the Law apply, Tim? I digress.
Tim quotes John 5.28-29, but again leaves out the PREVIOUS verses of 5.25: “for I tell you the time is coming and NOW HAS COME when THE DEAD will hear the voice of the son of God, and those who hear will LIVE.” That was ALREADY taking place in connection with the resurrection of the “rest of the dead” (5.28,29; compared to Rev. 20.5). Notice again, “all who are in their graves.” Is that where we hang out, Tim, when we die? The “grave”? Jesus said “all who come out of their GRAVES” including the righteous, therefore, until the resurrection, the righteous remain “in the graves” (plural), in the casket, until he comes again! The literalism produces absurdity, but that’s my point.
In dealing, finally, with I Corinthians 15, for the sake of space, I refer to reader to Dave Green’s website <http://www.strato.net/~dagreen/pretcosmos.html> for Question Number 93. Tim can interact with that response in his next paper.
Tim’s comparison of Jesus’ resurrection to ours is an inference he makes, and does not cite any direct Scripture stating that “in the same way Jesus was raised, corpse and all, so shall we be raised.” No Scripture like this exists. If one did exist this explicitly, then preterism falls immediately apart. Rather, “the one who raised up Jesus will also quicken your dead body” (Romans 8.11). Paul’s emphasis is one the fact that the same “power” that “quickens” will be the same “power” that quickens believers. But, what “dead body” is he talking about here? In Romans 8.10, just a verse above, he said, “but your BODY IS DEAD because of sin”. What? The Roman readers’ bodies were “dead”? Was he writing to corpses? What’s going on here? Paul, before, had talked about “this body of the Death” (7.24) and “who will rescue me from this body of the death?” And before that, “For we know that our old self WAS CRUCIFIED with him so that the BODY OF SIN might be rendered powerless” (6.6). Really? The believer “died” with Christ? Was the believer “raised” and “made alive” (“quickened”)? “..in order that JUST AS HE WAS RAISED FROM THE DEAD THROUGH THE GLORY OF THE FATHER, we too MAY LIVE A NEW LIFE” (6.4). Now, here’s a comparison for sure! But, it is clearly a SPIRITUAL UNION that has taken place, and not a “reanimation of the dead corpse.” Christ was the FIRST to be “raised from the dead” (I thought Lazarus beat him to it!), and raises up the church “with him” as Paul states. My “body of sin” is “put to death” so that I might “live a new life” in his “spiritual body.” What? I don’t have to physically die in order to be raised in newness of life in Christ? YES! PRAISE THE LORD! Paul uses the same word in Colossians 2.13, “God made you alive”. Since the “the law” was the “power of the sin” and “the sin” was the “sting of the death” (I Corinthians 15.56), then it follows that if “the law” is fulfilled, and the old covenant, the “administration of THE DEATH” (II Corinthians 3.7) was to “soon” vanish (Hebrews 8.13, which Tim admits is referring to A.D. 70), then when it in fact completely vanished, the “power of the sin” would be gone, and with it, the “power of the sin.” And, if the “power of the sin” is gone, then so is the “STING OF THE DEATH”. Jesus was the first to be raised from “the death” that occurred and reigned “through the sin” of Adam (Romans 5.12). He was raised from this death and has raised the church from this death so that those who believe in him “will never ever see death”. I conclude this paper with Paul: “Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ who has given us the victory over the death!”