|Question||What benefits do believers receive from Christ at their death?|
|Answer||The souls of believers are at their death made perfect in holiness,1 and do immediately pass into glory;2 and their bodies being still united to Christ,3 do rest in their graves4 till the resurrection.5|
The Baptist Catechism Set to Music
Benjamin Beddome’s Exposition
Do believers die as well as others?
Your fathers where are they, and the prophets do they live for ever?
Must they die as well as others?
Knowing that shortly I must put off this tabernacle,
2 Peter 1:14
Would they not live if they could?
I would not live always,
But is there a manifest difference between their death and that of others?
For precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints,
Is death an advantage to the saints?
To die is gain,
Doth the soul die with the body?
For men may kill the body, but they are not able to kill the soul,
Doth it sleep with the body?
For it returns to God who gave it,
Does it immediately enter upon a separate state?
For when we are absent from the body, we are present with the Lord,
2 Corinthians 5:8
Doth death release the saints from all their sorrows?
They shall no more say, I am sick,
And free them from all their remaining corruptions?
For they are without fault before the throne of God,
And set them at an eternal distance from all their spiritual enemies?
For the accuser of the brethren is cast down,
And put an end to all their trials and labours?
They rest from their labours,
And introduce them into a state of absolute perfection?
For the spirits of just men are made perfect,
Do believers at death enter upon a state of perfect knowledge?
For here we see through a glass darkly, but then face to face,
1 Corinthians 13:12
And of perfect holiness?
For they have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb,
And of complete glory?
Thou shalt guide me by thy counsel and afterward receive me to glory,
Are they received into a glorious place?
For it is enlightened with the glory of God, and the Lamb is the light thereof,
Are they joined with glorious company?
They are come to an innumerable company of angels, to God the Judge of all, and to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant,
Do they wear a glorious image?
I shall be satisfied when I awake in thy likeness,
Are they employed in glorious works?
They serve God day and night, in his temple,
And do they receive a glorious reward?
Ye shall receive a crown of glory, that fadeth not away,
1 Peter 5:4
Are the bodies of believers committed to the grave?
Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was,
Is the grave the common receptacle of mankind?
Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was,
Hath a decent interment been sometimes denied to wicked men?
He shall be buried with the burial of an ass,
But is it promised to the saint?
Thou shalt go to thy Father in peace, thou shalt be buried in a good old age,
Is the grave a resting place to such?
They shall rest in their beds,
And do they sometimes long for that resting place?
O that thou wouldst hide me in the grave,
And provide for it?
Give me a possession of a burying place,
Doth death separate the saints from the love of God?
Neither death nor life can separate us from the love of God,
Or dissolve their union with Christ?
For they sleep in Jesus,
1 Thessalonians 4:14
May they therefore meet it without fear?
O death, where is thy sting, 0 grave where is thy victory,
1 Corinthians 15:55
The Westminster Larger Catechism
|Question||What is the communion in glory which the members of the invisible church have with Christ?|
|Answer||The communion in glory which the members of the invisible church have with Christ, is in this life,1 immediately after death,2 and at last perfected at the resurrection and day of judgment.3|
|Question||What is the communion in glory with Christ which the members of the invisible church enjoy in this life?|
|Answer||The members of the invisible church have communicated to them in this life the firstfruits of glory with Christ, as they are members of him their head, and so in him are interested in that glory which he is fully possessed of;1 and, as an earnest thereof, enjoy the sense of God's love,2 peace of conscience, joy in the Holy Ghost, and hope of glory;3 as, on the contrary, sense of God's revenging wrath, horror of conscience, and a fearful expectation of judgment, are to the wicked the beginning of their torments which they shall endure after death.4|
|Question||What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death?|
|Answer||The communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death, is, in that their souls are then made perfect in holiness,1 and received into the highest heavens,2 where they behold the face of God in light and glory,3 waiting for the full redemption of their bodies,4 which even in death continue united to Christ,5 and rest in their graves as in their beds,6 till at the last day they be again united to their souls.7 Whereas the souls of the wicked are at their death cast into hell, where they remain in torments and utter darkness, and their bodies kept in their graves, as in their prisons, till the resurrection and judgment of the great day.8|