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Purgatory is Unbiblical
I. The concept of Purgatory is basically that of a halfway house between heaven and hell where some children of God go to suffer a while for their sins on earth that were not completely atoned for.
1. Purgatory n. - 1. a. A condition or place of spiritual purging and purification; spec. in Roman Catholic belief, a state ‘in which souls who depart this life in the grace of God suffer for a time, because they still need to be cleansed from venial sins, or have still to pay the temporal punishment due to mortal sins, the guilt and the eternal punishment of which have been remitted’ (Cath. Dict.).
2. Catholics attempt to justify their teaching of Purgatory by using 1Co 3:12-15.
A. 1Co 3:12 - Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble;
B. 1Co 3:13 - Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is.
C. 1Co 3:14 - If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward.
D. 1Co 3:15 - If any man's work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.
3. This is an example of how unlearned and ignorant men wrest the scriptures (2Pe 3:16).
4. These verses are not teaching that men will be purified by fire after death, but that their work will be tried by fire while they live on earth.
5. The work in the context of the passage is the work of the ministry in converting souls and building churches (1Co 3:4-11).
II. The concept of Purgatory is entirely unbiblical for the following reasons.
1. Purgatory, or the concept under a different name, is not mentioned even once in the Bible.
2. Jesus Christ made complete atonement for all of the sins of His elect, and therefore they have no sin remaining to be punished for.
A. Rom 5:9 - Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
B. Isa 53:5 - But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
C. 1Jn 2:2 - And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
D. Heb 1:3 - Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;
E. Heb 10:14 - For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
F. 1Pe 3:18 - For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
G. Rom 8:1 - There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
H. Joh 5:24 - Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.
3. There are only one of two places that all men will go to after death: heaven or hell.
A. Luk 16:22-23 - And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; 23 And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.
B. Heb 9:27 - And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:
C. 2Co 5:8 - We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.
D. Ecc 12:7 - Then shall the dust return to the earth as it was: and the spirit shall return unto God who gave it.
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