Unmasked: The Dead Know Nothing

Have you ever wondered where people go when they die? Upon dying, do their souls drift about in purgatory? Do they die and come back as some as sort of spirit that lurks among you? Or as others believe, are they reincarnated into animals? Could your dead grandmother actually be your pet dog? Or is she looking down on you from Heaven?

I don’t know about you, but knowing that my grandma was watching from above, would trouble me a bit. I mean… would she be able to see my every move? Plus, that doesn’t seem like a fair deal to me – She in paradise, while I am  stuck here on earth, amid all this pain and suffering.

The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 9, verses 5 and 6, that “the living know that they shall die; but the dead know not anything…their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished, neither have they have any more a portion forever in anything that is done under the sun…”

That means that your grandmother’s spirit is not hovering over you in Heaven, nor will she came back as some lowly animal creature. If that were the case, that would attribute to her immortal qualities. Death for us would then just mean another life in Heaven with God, where we would become fully cognizant of everything our loved ones would be going through here on earth. But then, would it really be paradise for us to know all of the pain and suffering of our loved ones, while we ourselves were separated from them and enjoying true bliss?

The Bible makes it clear that we are mortal beings. It is only God Himself that is immortal. (1 Timothy 6:15, 16).

In Genesis 2:7, it states that God “breathed into [man’s] nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul.” You see, the soul and the body are not recognized as separate entities. We are a soul, so that when we die, it is not that our spirit is still hanging out, while our body is in the grave. It is that our bodies remain in the grave, and our spirits (which basically just means our breath of life) returns to God who gave it.

In Job 7, verses 9 and 10, speaking of the dead, Job writes: “As the cloud is consumed and vanishes away, so he that goes down to the grave shall come up no more. He shall return no more to his house, neither shall his place know him anymore.”

The belief that the soul is immortal, stems from Roman mythology, and this very belief is widely taught among various Christian denominations today. But this is not supported anywhere in the Bible.

In Psalm 103:14, it says: “For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust.”

In Job 7:21, this further confirms our natural state, and the fact that we are mortal beings. “Now shall I sleep in the dust; and thou shall seek me in the morning, but I shall not be.”

And in Psalm 146:4, we are told that when a man dies, “His spirit departs, he returns to his earth, in that very day his plans perish.” This further emphasizes the idea that we are not fully conscious beings aside from our bodies; there is no consciousness after death.

On Halloween, you will see people dressed in all sorts of costumes that portray many gloomy, horrid fantastical creatures. They will take part in this make-believe game that our society has so often deemed as harmless, enjoyable fun. But did you know that Halloween originates from an ancient Celtic festival called Samhain, when the dead were celebrated? The Celts believed that the night of October 31 was when the ghosts of the dead returned to earth, and there was no boundary between the two worlds of the living and the dead.[1]  On this day, because it was widely believed that ghosts returned to earth, people were afraid of being recognized by them, so they would wear masks so that the ghosts would mistake them for their fellow spirits.[2]

Over time, the holiday has come to be what we know today, filled with fearless fashion and succulent sweets, on what is considered to be a “harmless” night out with friends. Although it has been “prettied up”, with little girls dressing up as princesses and angels, we cannot ignore its dark past. Allowing ourselves in any way, shape or form to become mixed up in these activities, can never come to any good. This celebration of the make-believe and glamorization of the dead is deception, by one who likes to play a lot of tricks…and he plays dress-up too.

In the Bible, we are told that there exists a devil known as Satan that masquerades as an angel of light. (2 Corinthians 11:4). And he is not so harmless. He deceives many, so that they may be ultimately lost in the sea of darkness – the darkness of despair, doubt, and ultimate doom.

But there is One named Jesus Christ, who presents Himself to us just as He is – No pretending. He came to earth and lived among us in the garb of humanity, yet was truly divine. He died a cruel death on the cross to save us from the bondage of our sins.  Then, He was resurrected… He is a living God.

When the women came to the tomb looking for Him three days after He was crucified, the angels said to them: “Why seek ye the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen…” (Luke 24:5, 6). You see, Jesus is alive and well, and wants to be your personal Saviour.

He is deeply offended when we turn to the dead that cannot help us, when He is available to help us in our time of need.

Instead of getting caught up in the fantasies of this life that can never satisfy, why not turn to Him? Don’t cling to that which is lifeless, but cling to the ultimate Life-Giver, who has promised you everlasting life (John 3:16).

Choose Him today.

“And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? For the living to the dead?” (Isaiah 8:19)

[1]  History of Halloween. 2009. <http://www.history.com/topics/halloween/history-of-halloween>.

[2] History of Halloween. 2009. <http://www.history.com/topics/halloween/history-of-halloween>.

Photo Courtesy: kzenon / 123RF Stock Photo

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Speak the Words Communications is a faith-based media and communications platform with a desire to tell stories with purpose. Our aim is to inform, equip and inspire through our media.

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