I will finish my study of Job later this week. It has been a fascinating and frustrating time. This study has brought with it more introspection and deep thought than any other study I’ve done.
One of the things I’ve realized is just how little we really know about the afterlife. Christians fall into at least a dozen different categories in terms of what they imagine happens when we die. These ideas range from a Hellenistic blissful disembodied state existence in the heavens to a continuation of our earthly life after the resurrection. And I suppose there are some Christians who believe that life is over when it is over.
What camp do I fall in? I fall in the camp of those who admit they have no idea of what happens after death.
We are given an extremely measly amount of information in the Bible. Most of our ideas are philosophical constructs built on tiny little pieces of conversations in the Bible. Indeed, whole systems are built on “I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Or is it “I say to you today, you will be with me in paradise.”? Anyway, what is paradise? It is only mentioned a couple times.
I expect to be surprised when I die. That’s about all I can say about it.
My hope is that I will have an enjoyable life with my loved ones in the direct presence of God himself. In my thought, this will be on a renewed earth without the problems that plague us now. I hope we will still have work to do and things to learn.
But this hope is built on my interpretation of the Bible and others see it significantly differently. I guess, in a way, it’s all folk theology, since we don’t have much in the Bible to teach us. I don’t know how anyone could feel bold enough to pontificate.
So, I will wait and see. And it won’t be long.